Excavations at Liang Bua, Flores, Indonesia, have yielded evidence for an endemic human species, Homo floresiensis, a population that occupied the cave between w95–17 ka. This discovery has major implications for early hominin evolution and dispersal in Africa and Asia, attracting worldwide interest. This preface describes the rationale for the excavations in historical, geographical, and wider research
contexts, as well as the methods used. It also introduces the other papers on aspects of Liang Bua
research that feature in this edition of the Journal of Human Evolution. 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.