Prof Emese M. Bordy



  • Clastic sedimentology (esp. fluvial deposits)
  • Stratigraphy, sedimentology and palaeo-ecosystems of the Karoo in southern Africa
  • Paleozoic and Mesozoic basin evolution in southern Africa
  • Continental ichnology
  • Sedimentology of Karoo coal-bearing strata (outside the main Karoo Basin)



Latest Publications (past 3 years only – click here for other publications)


*denotes postgraduate students or postdoctoral researchers

  1. Bordy, E.M., Lockley, M.G., Rampersadh*, A., Mukaddam*, R., Head*, H. 2022. Life and land engulfed in the late Early Jurassic Karoo lavas of southern Gondwana. Geological Magazine 1-22.  (open-access article)
  1. Head*, H., Bordy, E.M. 2022. Lake dynamics in an Early Jurassic desert: Evidence from the Clarens Formation in southern Africa. Sedimentology 1-30.   (open-access article)
  1. Lallensack JN, Bordy EM, Lockley MG, Wings O 2022. Relaunching the TY tracksite: tridactyl dinosaur footprints from the Lower Jurassic of southern Africa. Historical Biology (open-access article)
  1. Abrahams* M, Bordy EM, Knoll F, Farlow JO 2022. Theropod tridactyl tracks across the Triassic–Jurassic boundary in southern Africa: Implications for pedal morphology evolution. Frontiers in Ecology and Evolution 10: 925313.  (open-access article)
  1. Bordy, E.M.; Paiva*, F. 2021. Stratigraphic architecture of the Karoo river channels at the End-Capitanian. Frontiers in Earth Science 8: 521766.  (open-access article)
  1. Bordy, E.M. 2021. Darting towards Storm Shelter: a minute dinosaur trackway from southern Africa. South African Journal of Science 117 (5/6) (open-access article, cover page & editors’ choice)
  1. Bordy, E.M., Haupt*, T., Head*, H.V. 2021. Karoo lava-fed deltas and a petrified forest from the Lower Jurassic of southern Gondwana. Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology. p.110484.
  1. Bordy, E.M.; Sztanó, O.  2021.  Badenian (middle Miocene) continental paleoenvironment in the Nógrád-Novohrad Basin (Central Paratethys): a volcano-sedimentary record from the Páris-patak Valley in Hungary. Földtani Közlöny (Bulletin of the Hungarian Geological Society) 151: 159–178 (open-access article &  cover page)   Watch its musical version here: 
  1. Makhubele*, M.H., Bordy, E.M. 2021. Sequence stratigraphy in the Algoa and Gamtoos Basins (South Africa): a shoreline’s journey since the Middle Mesozoic. Geo-Marine Letters. 41:52 (open access article)
  1. Geel*, C.; Bordy, E.M. 2021. Palaeo-environmental and provenance reconstruction of the Lower Permian mudstones (lower Ecca Group) in the main Karoo Basin, South Africa. Journal of African Earth Sciences p.104303.
  1. Geel*, C.; Nolte, S.; Bordy, E.M. 2021. Geomechanical properties of the Permian black shales in the southern main Karoo Basin: lessons from compositional and petrophysical studies. South African Journal of Geology 124.3
  1. Radermacher, VJ; Fernandez, V; Schachner, ER; Butler, R; Bordy, EM; Naylor Hudgins, M; de Klerk, WJ; Chapelle, KEJ; Choiniere, JN. 2021. A new Heterodontosaurus specimen elucidates the unique ventilatory macroevolution of ornithischian dinosaurs. eLife.  (open-access article)
  1. Bordy E. M., Abrahams* M., Sharman G. R., Viglietti P. A., Benson R. B. J., McPhee B. W., Barrett P. M., Sciscio* L., Condon D., Mundil R., Rademan* Z., Jinnah Z., Clark J. M., Suarez C. A., Chapelle K. E. J., Choiniere J. N. 2020. A chronostratigraphic framework for the upper Stromberg Group: implications for the Triassic-Jurassic boundary in southern Africa. Earth-Science Reviews 203: 103120.
  1. Bordy, E.M., Rampersadh*, Abrahams*, M., Lockley, M.G., Head*, H. 2020. Tracking the Pliensbachian–Toarcian Karoo firewalkers: Trackways of quadruped and biped dinosaurs and mammaliaforms. PLoS ONE 15(1): e0226847. (open-access article)
  1. Bordy, E.M. 2020. Depositional style changes during the Permo-Carboniferous – Early Jurassic evolution of the Central Kalahari Karoo Sub-basin, Botswana. Geology Journal 55:5514–5539.
  1. Muir, R.*, Bordy, E.M., Mundil R., Frei, D. 2020. Recalibrating the breakup history of SW Gondwana: U-Pb radioisotopic age constraints from the southern Cape of South Africa. Gondwana Research 84:  177–193.
  1. Viglietti P.A., McPhee B.W., Bordy E.M., Sciscio* L., Barrett P.M., Benson R. B. J., Wills S., Chapelle K. E. J., Dollman K. N., Mdekazi C., Choiniere J. N. 2020. Biostratigraphy of the Massospondylus Assemblage Zone (Stormberg Group, Karoo Supergroup), South Africa. South African Journal of Geology 123 (2), 249–262.
  1. Viglietti P.A., McPhee B.W., Bordy E.M., Sciscio* L., Barrett P.M., Benson R. B. J., Wills S., Tolchard F., Choiniere J. N. 2020.Biostratigraphy of the Scalenodontoides Assemblage Zone (Stormberg Group, Karoo Supergroup), South Africa. South African Journal of Geology 123 (2), 239–248.
  1. Abrahams*, M., Sciscio*, L., Reid*, M., Haupt*, T. & Bordy, E.M. 2020. Large tridactyl dinosaur tracks from the Early Jurassic of southern Gondwana - uppermost Elliot Formation, Upper Moyeni, Lesotho. Annales Societatis Geologorum Poloniae 90, 1–26. (open-access article)
  1. Abrahams*, M., Bordy, E. M. & Knoll, F. 2020. Hidden for one hundred years: a diverse theropod ichnoassemblage and tracks preserved in cross-section from the historic Early Jurassic Tsikoane ichnosite (Clarens Formation, northern Lesotho, southern Africa). Historical Biology
  1. Sciscio*, L., Bordy, E.M., Head*, H. 2020. A Late Triassic aquatic community: Undichna-like and related swimming traces from a freshwater pond in the lower Elliot Formation of South Africa. Journal of African Earth Sciences
  1. Mukaddam*, R., Bordy, E.M., Lockley, M.G., Chapelle K.E.J. 2020. Reviving Kalosauropus, an Early Jurassic sauropodomorph track from southern Africa (Lesotho).  Historical Biology


Graduated Students

1. Dr Howard Head, PhD 2022   2. Dr Marvel Makhubele, PhD 2021  
3. Dr Claire Geel, PhD 2020;   4. Dr Miengah Abrahams, PhD 2020;  
5. Dr Robert Muir, PhD 2019;   6. Dr Kenneth Chukwuma, PhD 2017  
7. Dr Lara Sciscio, PhD 2016;   8. Dr “Spaggs” R I Spaggiari, PhD 2011;  
9.Ms T’Nielle Haupt, MSc 2019   10. Ms Megan Runds, MSc 2018  
11. Mr Yambi Dinis, MSc 2018 with distinction   12. Ms Bianca Harrison, MSc 2018 with distinction (co-supervised with Dr W Taylor)  
13. Ms Zandri Rademan, MSc 2018 (co-supervised with Dr Tucker of SU)   14. Mr Chris van der Linde, MSc 2017  
15. Ms Mhairi Reid, MSc 2017   16. Mr Francisco Paiva, MSc 2016 with distinction  
18. Mr Stuart A. Campbell, MSc 2015 (co-supervised with Prof A Goetz)   19. Mr Marvel Makhubele, MSc 2014  
20. Mr William Krummeck, MSc 2013   21. Mr Tebogo Segwabe, MSc 2008  
22. Ms Emily Hanson, MSc 2007 (co-supervised with Prof J Moore)   23. Ms Nkazi Zuma, hons (co-supervised with Dr M Abrahams), 2022  
24. Mr Riyaad Mukaddam, BSc honours 2020   25. Ms Maposholi Mokhethi, BSc honours 2017  
26. Mr Akhil Rampersadh, BSc honours 2017   27. Mr Lunga Mapekula, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr L Sciscio), 2016  
28. Ms T’Nielle Haupt, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr L Sciscio), 2016   29. Ms Mieng Abrahams, BSc honours 2015  
30. Mr Travis America, BSc honours   31. Ms Bianca Harrison, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr W Taylor) 2015  
32. Ms Jani Van Gen, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr R Tucker, Stellenbosch University) 2015   33. Mr Adrian Peter Bunge, BSc honours 2014  
34. Ms Antonia Reis De Carvalho, BSc honours   35. Mr Robert Muir, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr R Prevec) 2014  
36. Ms Buhle Donga, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr L Greyling) 2014   37. Ms Mhairi Reid, BSc honours (co-supervised with Dr W Taylor)  
38. Mr Devon Bowen, BSc honours 2013   39. Ms Chelsea Rebelo, BSc honours 2013  
40. Mr Francisco Paiva, BSc honours 2013 (co-supervised with Dr Ake Fagereng)   41. Mr Tobi Mzobe, BSc honours 2013 (co-supervised with Dr Ake Fagereng)  
42. Mr Travis Smithard, BSc honours 2013 (co-supervised with Prof David Reid)   43. Ms Megan Jean Runds, BSc honours 2012  
44. Mr Howard Head, BSc honours 2012   45. Mr William Krummeck, BSc honours 2010  
46. Ms Nelao Udjombala, BSc honours 2010   47. Ms Gwyn Buchanan, BSc honours 2009  
48. Ms Katie Baker, BSc honours 2008   49. Mr Bonno Makuke, BSc honours 2008  
50. Ms Wony Martin, BSc honours 2008   51. Ms Taleni Mbako, BSc honours 2006  
52. Mr Jonathan Robbeson, BSc honours 2005  




  • PhD, Rhodes University, South Africa, 2001
  • PGD in Higher Education (with distinction), Rhodes University, South Africa, 2006
  • MSc, Eötvös Loránd University, Hungary, 1998

Scholarships, Fellowships and Sponsorships Awarded

  • UCT Science Faculty Established Teacher Award: 2021

  • Outstanding Article Award from the South African Journal of Science: 2021

  • Merit award of the Faculty of Science: 2017
  • NRF - Competitive Program for Rated Researchers:  2012, 2015, 2018
  • NRF-DST Centre of Excellence in Palaeosciences: 2014-2021
  • NRF - African Origins Platform: 2011, 2012, 2013, 2016
  • NRF Incentive Funding for Rated Scientists: since 2009
  • University of Cape Town, Faculty of Science (various grants): 2013, 2014
  • University of Cape Town Research Council: 2011
  • Rhodes University, Deputy VC (Research and Development) and Dean of Science discretionary grants: 2010
  • NRF South African-Hungarian Science and Technology Cooperation: 2007, 2008
  • Rhodes University, Joint Research Committee: 2004, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2010, 2011
  • NRF Postdoctoral Research Fellowship: 01-01-2002 - 29-02-2004
  • De Beers Doctoral Scholarship (fully funded): 1998, 1999, 2000
  • Scholarship of the Hungarian Republic: 1995, 1996
  • TEMPUS Scholarship (visiting student at the University of Reading, Postgraduate Research  Institute for Sedimentology, UK); 1996-97
  • CEPUS Scholarship (visiting student at the Jagellonian University of Krakow, Poland); 1995