Zoological Research ›› 2018, Vol. 39 ›› Issue (4): 249-254.doi: 10.24272/j.issn.2095-8137.2018.033

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Extant primates and development of primatology in China: Publications, student training, and funding

Peng-Fei Fan1,*, Chi Ma1   

  1. 1 School of Life Sciences, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou Guangdong 510275, China
  • Online:2018-07-18 Published:2018-05-11
  • Contact: Peng-Fei Fan,E-mail:fanpf@mail.sysu.edu.cn E-mail:fanpf@mail.sysu.edu.cn
  • Supported by:


China supports the richest non-human primate diversity in the northern hemisphere, providing an excellent opportunity for Chinese primatologists to take a leading role in advancing the study of primatology. Primatology in China began to flourish after 1979. To date, Chinese primatologists have published more than 1000 papers in journals indexed by the Chinese Science Citation Database and the Web of Science Core Collection, and universities and academic institutions have trained 107 PhD students and 370 Masters students between 1984 and 2016. In total, the National Science Foundation of China has funded 129 primate projects (71.7 million Yuan) supporting 59 researchers from 28 organizations. However, previous research has also shown obvious species bias. Rhinopithecus roxellana, Rhinopithecus bieti, and Macaca mulatta have received much greater research attention than other species. Researchers have also tended to continue to study the same species (55.2%) they studied during their PhD training. To promote the development of primatology in China, we suggest 1) the need for a comprehensive primatology textbook written in Chinese, 2) continued training of more PhD students, and 3) encouragement to study less well-known primate species.

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