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UM News
September 20, 2013

MISSOULA – University of Montana Professor and Director of the UM Paleontology Center George Stanley will conduct research at Kumamoto University in Japan during October and November as part of the Japanese Society for the Promotion and Science BRIDGE Fellowship program.

While in Japan, Stanley will continue work on a collaborative research project which will involve field work in Kyushu, the country’s mountainous, southernmost island. He will work with his faculty host at Kumamoto, Tetsuji Onoue, who also is a faculty affiliate with the UM Department of Geosciences and has traveled to Montana for research.

Stanley and Onoue will study ancient limestone rocks that are more than 200 million years old. The limestone makes up a large part of Kyushu and other Japanese islands and contains fossilized remains of ancient sea life.

“We’re trying to figure out where Japan was 200 million years ago,” Stanley said. “It wasn’t where it is now.”

He also will try to determine the sedimentology and ancient ecology of the reef organism.

JSPS fosters the work of scientists from around the world and a major goal of their program is to promote international collaborative research. As part of the Fellowship, Stanley will travel to universities across the country to promote the exchange of science between the U.S. and Japan.

In 1992 and ’93, Stanley was a UM International Exchange scholar at Kumamoto and he served as the JSPS Fellow to Kyushu University in 1995. The BRIDGE Program allows former JSPS Fellows to return to Japan to renew contacts and develop new areas of research.

Before his first trip to Japan, Stanley chatted with former U.S. Sen. Mike Mansfield, who also had been the longest serving U.S. ambassador to Japan. The men spoke about the country for about 30 minutes during a reception held in Mansfield’s honor, and he assured Stanley that he would enjoy visiting and working in Japan.

“He was right,” Stanley said. “I did.”

For more information call Stanley at 406-243-5693 or email






Contact: George Stanley, geosciences professor and director of the UM Paleontology Center, 406-243-5693,