Dorothy Cheney & Robert Seyfarth

Departments of Biology and Psychology, University of Pennsylvania
Publications, Grad Students, Post-Docs


We received our PhDs from the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour at Cambridge University under the supervision of Robert Hinde. After Cambridge, we became post-doctoral fellows and then assistant professors at Rockefeller University, where we worked with Peter Marler. We moved to UCLA in 1981 and to the University of Pennsylvania in 1985. We retired in 2016.

Most of our research has focused on monkeys living under natural conditions. From 1977-88, we studied a population of vervet monkeys in Amboseli National Park, Kenya. Results of this work are summarized in our book How Monkeys See the World (Cheney & Seyfarth 1990, University of Chicago Press). In 1992, together with a terrific group of colleagues, we began a long-term study of free-ranging baboons in the Okavango Delta of Botswana. Results of this work are summarized in the book Baboon Metaphysics (Cheney & Seyfarth, 2007, University of Chicago Press) and many papers.

Honors and Awards: In 2015, Dorothy was elected to the U.S. National Academy of Sciences. Robert was elected in 2017. In 2016, we jointly received the Distinguished Primatologist Award from the American Society of Primatologists; Dorothy also received the Distinguished Animal Behaviorist Award from the Animal Behavior Society. Robert received the same award in 2020. In 2013, we both received honorary doctorates from the University of Neuchatel, Switzerland. In 2012 (Robert) and 1999 (Dorothy) was elected Fellow of the American Academy of Arts & Sciences. In 2007 Robert was elected Fellow of the Association for Psychological Science; in 1996 he was elected Fellow of the American Psychological Association. In 1997 we were both elected Fellows of the Animal Behavior Society; in 1995 we were awarded Guggenheim Fellowships.

Dorothy died in November 2018. Here is a link to her obituary:



Dorothy Cheney – CV-Cheney-1f2us2t

Robert Seyfarth –CVRMS