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Dr. Christian Leipe

Christian Leipe
Bildquelle: Jan Kersten

assoziierter Wissenschaftler

Currently based at Nagoya University, Institute for Space-Earth Environmental Research (ISEE), Research Institutes Building II, Furo-cho, Chikusa-ku, Nagoya 464-8601, Japan
Curriculum vitae
  • since 11/2021 Visiting Associate Professor at the Institute for Space-Earth Environmental Research, Nagoya University, Japan (Gerda Henkel Foundation Research Scholarship 05/F/21)
  • 05/2021–10/2021 Guest Scientist at the Institute of Geological Sciences (Paleontology Section), FU Berlin (DFG Research Fellowship LE 3508/4-1)
  • 05/2018–04/2021 Visiting Associate Professor at the Institute for Space-Earth Environmental Research, Nagoya University, Japan (Principal investigator DFG Research Fellowship LE 3508/2-1)
  • 10/2015–02/2018 Scientific Associate at the Institute of Geological Sciences (Paleontology Section), FU Berlin (Principal investigator DFG Research Grant LE 3508/1-1)
  • 04/2015–09/2015 Scientific Associate at the Institute of Geological Sciences (Paleontology Section), FU Berlin
  • 09/2014–03/2015 Scientific Associate at the German Archaeological Institute (DAI), Berlin
  • 03/2014–08/2014 Freelance work for the Institute of Geological Sciences (Paleontology), FU Berlin (Grant from the Research Committee and the Department of Earth Sciences of the FU Berlin for the promotion of young scientists)
  • 11/2013–02/2014 Freelance work for the German Archaeological Institute (DAI), Berlin
  • 06/2014 Defence of doctoral thesis ("Insights into late Quaternary vegetation and climate dynamics in Monsoon Asia obtained from numerical pollen-based reconstructions")
  • 11/2010–11/2013 Doctoral student at the Institute of Geological Sciences, Palaeontology, FU Berlin
  • 06/2007–12/2007 Thesis (Diplom) in Palaeoenvironmental studies: “Tracking human impact on Lake Ellesmere (Te Waihora) using Pollen and Chironomidae (Diptera)” during a term abroad at the University of Canterbury, Christchurch, New Zealand
  • 04/2007–06/2007 Intern in a Marsden Grant-funded research project at the Department of Geology, University of Auckland, New Zealand
  • 03/2006–06/2006 Student Assistant at the Department of Geology, University of Auckland, New Zealand

  • SS 2016: "Micropalaeontology and biostratigraphy" (lecture and seminar, 2 SWS, together with Prof. P.E. Tarasov)
  • WS 2016/17: "Applied Palynology" (lecture and seminar, 4 SWS, together with Prof. P.E. Tarasov)
  • WS 2016/17: "Human environment interactions" (lecture and seminar, 4 SWS, together with Prof. P.E. Tarasov)
  • WS 2016/17: "Coring and subsampling peatlands for palaeoenvironmental analyses" (excursion)

My main research focus is on

  • the evolution of late Pleistocene–Holocene climate and environments and human–environment interactions in Northern, Eastern and Southern Eurasia and
  • subsistence economies of prehistoric and early historic cultures, the shift from foraging to farming, and the development and spread of crops in Eurasia.

Current projects

  • Gerda Henkel Foundation Research Scholarship 05/F/21
    Project title: “Taiwan – a stopover or melting pot? The development and spread of agriculture in East and Southeast Asia as part of fundamental economic and social transformation”
  • DFG Research Grant TA 540/8-1 (co-PI)
    Project title: “The spread of agriculture into Far East Eurasia: Timing, pathways and environmental feedbacks”

Completed projects (own)

  • DFG Research Fellowship LE 3508/2-1
    “Flow cytometric techniques in Quaternary research: Improving radiocarbon age determination and evaluating potentials of stable isotope and aDNA analyses based on high-purity fossil pollen samples”
  • DFG Research Grant LE 3508/1-1 (with temporary position for principal investigator)
    Project title: “Postglacial climate variability at the northern limit of the East Asian monsoon and its impact on environments and humans in the Hokkaido region, northern Japan”
Research articles

* Corresponding author(s)

in press

Kobe, F., Leipe, C., Shchetnikov, A.A., Hoelzmann, P., Gliwa, J., Olschewski, P., Goslar, T., Wagner, M., Bezrukova, E.V., Tarasov, P.E.* Not herbs and forbs alone: Pollen-based evidence for the presence of boreal trees and shrubs in Cis-Baikal (Eastern Siberia) derived from the Last Glacial Maximum sediment of Lake Ochaul. Journal of Quaternary Science (in press).


Special issue: Holocene Environments, Human Subsistence and Adaptation in Northern and Eastern Eurasia
Editorial: Leipe, C.*, Long, T., Wertmann, P., Wagner, M., 2022. Holocene Environments, Human Subsistence and Adaptation in Northern and Eastern Eurasia. Quaternary International 623, 1–7.

Yamamoto, M.*, Wang, F., Irino, T., Yamada, K., Haraguchi, T., Nakamura, H., Gotanda, K., Yonenobu, H., Leipe, L., Chen, X.Y., Tarasov, P.E., 2022. Environmental evolution and fire history of Rebun Island (northern Japan) during the past 17,000 years based on biomarkers and pyrogenic compound records from Lake Kushu. Quaternary International 623, 8–18.

Endo, E.*, Leipe, C., 2022. The onset, dispersal and crop preferences of early agriculture in the Japanese archipelago as derived from seed impressions in pottery. Quaternary International 623, 35–49.

Sergusheva, E.A.*, Leipe, C., Klyuev, N.A., Batarshev, S.V., Garkovik, A.V., Dorofeeva, N.A., Kolomiets, S.A., Krutykh, E.B., Malkov, S.S., Moreva, O.L., Sleptsov, I.Y., Hosner, D., Wagner, W., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2022. Evidence of millet and millet agriculture in the Far East Region of Russia derived from archaeobotanical data and radiocarbon dating. Quaternary International 623, 50–67.

Lyashchevskaya, M.S.*, Bazarova, V.B., Dorofeeva, N.A., Leipe, C.*, 2022. Late Pleistocene–Holocene environmental and cultural changes in Primorye, southern Russian Far East: A review. Quaternary International 623, 68–82.

Leipe, C.*, Lu, J.-c., Chi, K.-a., Lee, S.-m., Yang, H.-c., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., 2022. Evidence for cultivation and selection of azuki (Vigna angularis var. angularis) in prehistoric Taiwan sheds new light on its domestication history. Quaternary International 623, 83–93.

Long, T.*, Chen, H., Leipe, C., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., 2022. Modelling the chronology and dynamics of the spread of Asian rice from ca. 8000 BCE to 1000 CE. Quaternary International 623, 101–109.

Kobe, F., Hoelzmann, P., Gliwa, J., Olschewski, P., Peskov, S.A., Shchetnikov, A.A., Danukalova, G.A., Osipova, E.M., Goslar, T., Leipe, C., Wagner, M., Bezrukova, E.V., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2022. Lateglacial–Holocene environments and human occupation in the Upper Lena region of Eastern Siberia derived from sedimentary and zooarchaeological data from Lake Ochaul. Quaternary International 623, 139–158.

Bezrukova, E.V.*, Reshetova, S.A., Tetenkin, A.V., Tarasov, P.E., Leipe, C., 2022. The Early Neolithic–Middle Bronze Age environmental history of the Mamakan archaeological area, Eastern Siberia. Quaternary International 623, 159–168.

Tarasov, P.E., Pankova, S.V.*, Long, T., Leipe, C., Kalinina, K.B., Panteleev, A.V., Brandt, L.Ø., Kyzlasov, I.L., Wagner, M.*, 2022. New results of radiocarbon dating and identification of plant and animal remains from the Oglakhty cemetery provide an insight into the life of the population of southern Siberia in the early 1st millennium CE. Quaternary International 623, 169–183.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Savelieva, L.A.*, Kobe, F., Korotkevich, B.S., Long, T., Kostromina, N.A., Leipe, C., 2022. Lateglacial and Holocene changes in vegetation and human subsistence around Lake Zhizhitskoye, East European mid-latitudes, derived from radiocarbon-dated pollen and archaeological records. Quaternary International 623, 184–197.

Wagner, M.*, Hallgren-Brekenkamp, M., Xu, D., Kang, X., Wertmann, P., James, C., Elkina, I., Hosner, D., Leipe, C., Tarasov, P.E., 2022. The invention of twill tapestry points to Central Asia: Archaeological record of multiple textile techniques used to make the woollen outfit of a ca. 3000-year-old horse rider from Turfan, China. Archaeological Research in Asia 29, 100344.

Ma, T., Tarasov, P.E., Huang, K., Leipe, C., Man, M., Zheng, Z.*, 2022. Intensified climate drying and cooling during the last glacial culmination (20.8–17.5 cal ka BP) in the south-eastern Asian monsoon domain inferred from a high-resolution pollen record. Quaternary Science Reviews 278, 107371.

Leipe, C.*, Aquaro, A.*, Tarasov, P.E., 2022. Scanning electron microscopy for differentiating charred endocarps of Rhus/Toxicodendron species and tracking the use of the lacquer tree and Asian poison ivy in Japanese prehistory. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 41, 103335.


Kasai, Y., Leipe, C.*, Saito, M., Kitagawa, H., Lauterbach, S., Brauer, A., Tarasov, P.E., Goslar, T., Arai, F., Sakuma, S.*, 2021. Breakthrough in purification of fossil pollen for dating of sediments by a new large-particle on-chip sorter. Sciences Advances 7, eabe7327.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Leipe, C., Wagner, M., 2021. Environments during the spread of anatomically modern humans across Northern Asia 50–10 cal kyr BP: What do we know and what would we like to know? Quaternary International 596, 155–170.

Leipe, C.*, Endo, E., Kuramochi, S., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., 2021. Crop cultivation of Middle Yayoi culture communities (4th century BCE–1st century CE) in the Kanto region, eastern Japan, inferred from a radiocarbon-dated archaeobotanical record. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 30(3), 409–421.

Junno, A.*, Dury, J.P.R., Leipe, C., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., Hirasawa, Y., Jordan, P.D., Kato, H., 2021. Building a high-resolution chronology for Northern Hokkaido – A case study of the Late Holocene Hamanaka 2 site on Rebun Island, Hokkaido (Japan). Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 36, 102867.


Kobe, F., Bezrukova, E.V., Leipe, C., Shchetnikov, A.A., Goslar, T., Wagner, M., Kostrova, S.S., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2020. Holocene vegetation and climate history in Baikal Siberia reconstructed from pollen records and its implications for archaeology. Archaeological Research in Asia 23, 100209.

Leipe, C.*, Kuramochi, S., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., 2020. Ritual practices and social organisation of Middle Yayoi culture communities in the Kanto region, eastern Japan, derived from archaeological and botanical data from the Maenakanishi site. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 12, 134.

Leipe, C.*, Long, T., Wagner, M., Goslar, T., Tarasov, P.E., 2020. The spread of rice to Japan: Insights from Bayesian analysis of direct radiocarbon dates and population dynamics in East Asia. Quaternary Science Reviews 244, 106507.

Schubert, A., Lauterbach, S. Leipe, C., Scholz, V., Brauer, A., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2020. Anthropogenic and climate controls on vegetation changes between 1500 BCE and 500 CE, reconstructed from a high-resolution pollen record from varved sediments of Lake Mondsee, Austria. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 599, 109976.

Taft, L.*, Wiechert, U., Albrecht, C., Leipe, C., Tsukamoto, S., Wilke, T., Zhang, H., Riedel, F., 2020. Intra-seasonal hydrological processes on the western Tibetan Plateau: Monsoonal and convective rainfall events at ~7.5 ka. Quaternary International 537, 9-23.


Kobe, F., Bittner, M.K., Leipe, C., Hoelzmann, P., Long, T., Wagner, M., Zibulski, R., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2019. Lateglacial and early Holocene environments and human occupation in Brandenburg, eastern Germany. GEOGRAPHY, ENVIRONMENT, SUSTAINABILITY 12(2), 132-147.

Leipe, C.*, Kobe, F., Müller, S., 2019. Testing the performance of sodium polytungstate and lithium heteropolytungstate as non-toxic dense media for pollen extraction from lake and peat sediment samples. Quaternary International 516, 207-214.

Leipe, C.*, Long, T., Sergusheva, E.A., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E., 2019. Discontinuous spread of millet agriculture in eastern Asia and prehistoric population dynamics. Science Advances 5, eaax6225.

Schmidt, M.*, Leipe, C., Becker, F., Goslar, T., Hoelzmann, P., Mingram, J., Müller, S., Tjallingii, R., Wagner, M., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2019. A multi-proxy palaeolimnological record of the last 16,600 years from coastal Lake Kushu in northern Japan. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 514, 613-626.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Demske, D., Leipe, C., Long, T., Müller, S., Hoelzmann, P., Wagner, M., 2019. An 8500-year palynological record of vegetation, climate change and human activity in the Bosten Lake region of Northwest China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 516, 166-178.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Ilyashuk, B.P., Leipe, C., Müller, S., Plessen, B., Hoelzmann, P., Kostrova, S. S., Bezrukova, E.V., Meyer, H., 2019. Insight into the Last Glacial Maximum climate and environments of the Baikal region. Boreas 48(2), 488-506.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Savelieva, L.A., Long, T., Leipe, C., 2019. Postglacial vegetation and climate history and traces of early human impact and agriculture in the present-day cool mixed forest zone of European Russia. Quaternary International 516, 21-41.


Leipe, C.*, Müller, S., Hille, K., Kato, H., Kobe, F., Schmidt, M., Seyffert, K., Spengler III, R., Wagner, M., Weber, A.W., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2018. Vegetation change and human impacts on Rebun Island (Northwest Pacific) over the last 6000 years. Quaternary Science Reviews 193, 129-144.

Long, T.*, Leipe, C., Jin, G., Wagner, M., Guo, R., Schröder, O., Tarasov, P.E., 2018. The early history of wheat in China from 14C dating and Bayesian chronological modelling. Nature Plants 4, 272-279.


Zhao, L., Ma, M.*, Leipe, C., Long, T., Liu, K., Lu, H., Tang, L., Zhang, Y., Tarasov, P.E., 2017. Holocene vegetation dynamics in response to climate change and human activities derived from pollen and charcoal records from southeastern China. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology 485, 644–660.

Leipe, C.*, Sergusheva, E.A., Müller, S., Spengler III, R.N., Goslar, T., Kato, H., Wagner, M., Weber, A.W., Tarasov, P.E., 2017. Barley (Hordeum vulgare) in the Okhotsk culture (5th–10th century AD) of northern Japan and the role of cultivated plants in hunter-gatherer economies. PLOS One.


Long, T.*, Wagner, M., Demske, D., Leipe, C., Tarasov, P.E., 2016. Cannabis in Eurasia: origin of human use and Bronze Age trans-continental connections. Vegetation History and Archaeobotany 26(2) 245–258.

Demske, D.,Tarasov, P.E.*, Leipe, C., Kotlia, B.S., Lalit, M.J., Long, T., 2016. Record of vegetation, climate change, human impact and retting of hemp in Garhwal Himalaya (India) during the past 4600 years. The Holocene 26(10), 1661–1675.

Müller, S., Schmidt, M., Kossler, A., Leipe, C., Irino, T., Yamamoto, M., Yonenobu, H., Goslar, T., Kato, H., Wagner, M., Weber, A.W., Tarasov, P.E.*, 2016. Palaeobotanical records from Rebun Island and their potential for improving the chronological control and understanding human–environment interactions in the Hokkaido Region, Japan. The Holocene 26(10), 1646–1660.

Abe, C., Leipe, C.*, Tarasov, P.E., Müller, S., Wagner, M., 2016. Spatio-temporal distribution of hunter–gatherer archaeological sites in the Hokkaido region (northern Japan): An overview. The Holocene 26(10), 1627–1645.

Hosner, D., Wagner, M.*, Tarasov, P.E., Chen, X., Leipe, C., 2016. Spatiotemporal distribution patterns of archaeological sites in China during the Neolithic and Bronze Age: An overview. The Holocene 26(10), 1576–1593.

Schmidt, M.*, Tarasov, P.E., Hoelzmann, P., Meyer, H., Leipe, C., 2016. Diatoms from Lake Kushu: A pilot study to test the potential of a Late Quaternary palaeoenvironmental archive from Rebun Island (Hokkaido Region, Japan). Journal of Asian Earth Sciences 122, 106–122.


Leipe, C.*, Nakagawa, T., Gotanda, K., Müller, S., Tarasov, P.E., 2015. Late Quaternary vegetation and climate dynamics at the northern limit of the East Asian summer monsoon and its regional and global-scale controls. Quaternary Science Reviews 116, 57–71.


Taft, L.*, Mischke, S., Wiechert, U., Leipe, C., Rajabov, I., Riedel, F., 2014. Oxygen and carbon isotope ratios in Radix (Gastropoda) shells indicate changes of glacial melt-water flux and temperature since 4,200 cal yr BP at Lake Karakul, eastern Pamirs (Tajikistan). Journal of Paleolimnology 52(1–2), 27–41.

Riedel, F.*, Henderson, A.C.G., Heußner, K.-U., Kaufmann, G., Kossler, A., Leipe, C., Shemang, E., Taft, L., 2014. Dynamics of a Kalahari long-lived mega-lake system: hydromorphological and limnological changes in the Makgadikgadi Basin (Botswana) during the terminal 50 ka. Hydrobiologia 739(1), 25–53.

Leipe, C.*, Demske, D., Tarasov, P.E., Wünnemann, B., Riedel, F., HIMPAC Project Members, 2014. Potential of pollen and non-pollen palynomorph records from Tso Moriri (Trans-Himalaya, NW India) for reconstructing Holocene limnology and human–environmental interactions. Quaternary International 348, 113–129.

Leipe, C.*, Demske, D., Tarasov, P.E., HIMPAC Project Members, 2014. A Holocene pollen record from the northwestern Himalayan lake Tso Moriri: Implications for palaeoclimatic and archaeological research. Quaternary International 348, 93–112.


Tarasov, P.E.*, Andreev, A.A., Anderson, P.M., Lozhkin, A.V., Leipe, C., Haltia, E., Nowaczyk, N.R., Wennrich, V., Brigham-Grette, J., Melles, M., 2013. A pollen-based biome reconstruction over the last 3.562 million years in the Far East Russian Arctic – new insights into climate-vegetation relationships at the regional scale. Climate of the Past 9(6), 2759–2775.

Leipe, C.*, Kito, N., Sakaguchi, Y., Tarasov, P.E., 2013. Vegetation and climate history of northern Japan inferred from the 5500-year pollen record from the Oshima Peninsula, SW Hokkaido. Quaternary International 290–291, 151–163.

Tarasov, P.E.*, Müller, S., Zech, M., Andreeva, D., Diekmann, D., Leipe, C., 2013. Last glacial vegetation reconstructions in the extreme-continental eastern Asia: Potentials of pollen and n-alkane biomarker analyses. Quaternary International 290–291, 253–263.

Wagner, M.*, Tarasov, P., Hosner, D., Fleck, A., Ehrich, R., Chen, X., Leipe, C., 2013. Mapping of the spatial and temporal distribution of archaeological sites of northern China during the Neolithic and Bronze Age. Quaternary International 290–291, 344–357.

Conference and meeting contributions
  • Leipe, C., Abe, C., Müller S., Kato, H., Wagner, M., Weber, A.W., Tarasov, P.E., 2017. Postglacial environmental change and prehistoric hunter-fisher-gatherer habitations in the Hokkaido region (northern Japan) inferred from pollen data and archaeological site distribution. Poster at the JpGU-AGU Joint Meeting, 20–24 May, Chiba, Japan.

  • Leipe, C., Sergusheva, E.A., Müller, S., Spengler III, R.N., Goslar, T., Kato, H., Wagner, M., Weber, A.W., Tarasov, P.E., 2017. The spread of barley (Hordeum vulgare) into northern Japan and its role in the hunter-gatherer economy of the Hokkaido Okhotsk culture (5th–10th century AD). Talk at the III International Congress of Medieval Archaeology of the Eurasian steppes "Between East and West: the movement of cultures, technologies and empires", 02–07 May, Vladivostok, Russia.

    Leipe, C., Demske, D., Tarasov, P.E., 2015. New insights into the Holocene Asian summer monsoon dynamics and the evolution of the Indus Civilisation based on a pollen record from the high-alpine lake Tso Moriri (NW Himalayas). Talk at the XIX INQUA Congress, 26 Jul–02 Aug 2015, Nagoya, Japan.
  • Leipe, C., Demske, D., Tarasov, P.E., Wünnemann, B., Riedel, F. and HIMPAC-Members, 2015. New Evidence for Climate Influence on the Evolution of the Harappan Civilisation from Palynological Records from the high-alpine Lake Tso Moriri (NW Himalayas). Talk at the conference "The Introduction and Intensification of Agriculture in Central Eurasia: The Exception to the Rule or the Exception That Proves the Rule?", 19–22 Mar 2015, Berlin, Germany.
  • Leipe, C., Kito, N., Nakagawa, T., Tarasov, P.E., 2011. Surface pollen spectra from monsoonal Asia and its application for quantitative reconstruction of Holocene vegetation and climate. Talk at the “Bridging Eurasia” 3rd International Workshop, Berlin, Germany.
Other publications