Prof Louis Scott
Mentor (contract)
Plant Sciences
Plant Sciences
IB 62
051 4012594

Short CV

Louis Scott was born on the 12th of May 1946 in Edenville in the Free State. He matriculated in 1963 at Grey College, Bloemfontein and obtained a B.Sc. degree (Botany and Zoology) in 1967, a B.Sc. Hons in 1969 (distinction), a M.Sc. (Botany) in 1971 (distinction) and Ph. D (Botany) in 1979 at the University of the Free State. After obtaining a MSc if fossil pollen studies in 1971 at the University of the Free State, Louis Scott worked for the Southern Oil Exploration Corporation (SOEKOR) in Johannesburg between 1972 and 1973 where he studied Cretaceous fossil pollen in marine borehole cores. In 1974 he was appointed in the Institute for Environmental Sciences at the Free State University as researcher where he received a PhD in 1979. He went on a sabbatical in Tucson at the University of Arizona in 1979-80. In 1997 he was promoted to professor. As retired staff member, he is currently in a temporary academic position as researcher and mentor. His interests include fossil pollen analysis of Quaternary sediments in Africa (e.g., lake deposits, cave deposits and fossil dung layers) and long-term sequences of global environmental change. He did fieldwork in various parts of Southern Africa and also visited Marion Island (Southern Ocean), East Africa, and several overseas countries in connection with research. He is involved with about 170 scientific publications on palynology. He serves on the editorial board of Palaeoecology of Africa and Palaeontologia Africana, and acted as guest editor for volumes of Quaternary International (1996, 2004) and Review of Palaeobotany and Palynology (2019). He has a B-rating with the National Research Foundation and is member of several professional Societies, including the Southern African Society for Quaternary Research (SASQUA) (president between 1991 and 1993). He served on the National Committee for the International Union for Quaternary research (INQUA) and used to be a honorary research associate of the Sterkfontein Reserch Unit of the University of the Witwatersrand.

Publications (Short List)


  • Late Quaternary palynology and environmental change 
  • Coprolite pollen analysis and pollen taphnomy
  • Digitizing pollen reference material

Area(s) of Interest

Pollen morphology. Stratigraphic palynology (pollen analysis). Pollen analyses of archaeological sites. Long Quaternary continental records of environmental change. Palaeoenvironments of arid areas.



Faculty Manager: Velaphi Makgwahla
T: + 27 51 401 3199

Marketing Manager: Elfrieda Lötter
T: +27 51 401 2531

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