PD Dr. Rainer Schoch

Amphibians, reptiles (Palaeozoic, Mesozoic)

Born 1970.

  • Undergraduate studies at University of Tübingen


  • Diploma Thesis on the geology of a mountain range in NW-Argentina (Sierra de Ambato, Sierras Pampeanas).


  • PhD on Mastodonsaurus from the Middle Triassic of Kupferzell
  • Research trips to Moscow, Berkeley, New York, Johannesburg, London.


  • Curator at the Museum für Naturkunde Berlin and assistant professor at the Humboldt University Berlin.

Since November 2002

  • Curator at the Natural History Museum in Stuttgart.
  • Research trips to the United States (Harvard, Berkeley, Smithsonian), Qatar, China (Beijing, etc.), UK, Siberia, and Brazil.


  • Organization of a state-funded Mesozoic Reptile Exhibit at the Natural History Museum in Stuttgart. 

Since 2007

  • Excavations in the Middle and Upper Triassic of SW-Germany (e.g., Trossingen, Vellberg)

Protection of natural monuments

The protection of natural monuments is regulated by law. Certain fossil- bearing localities fall among those, as well as vertebrate fossils in general. In the State of Baden-Württemberg the collection of fossils is restricted as follows: while the collection is generally permitted, valuable finds have to be examined by the curators of the Stuttgart Natural History Museum. The region of Holzmaden, where the Posidonia Shale yields especially valuable vertebrates such as ichthyosaurs and plesiosaurs, is further protected and has been designated a special area of protection.

Fields of research

  • Permo-Triassic amphibians and reptiles
  • Evolutionary Biology and Evolution of Development
  • Vertebrate faunas and the formation of vertebrate deposits


Friedrich von Alberti Award 2010

Editorial Board 

  • Acta Zoologica (Stockholm)
  • Fossil Record (Berlin) - Co-Editor
  • Palaeodiversity (Stuttgart) - Handling Editor

    Research Group

    • Norbert Adorf and Isabell Rosin (preparators)
    • Dr. Dieter Seegis - researcher (vertebrate fossillagerstätten)
    • Dr. Gabriela Sobral (Rio de Janeiro) - postoctoral researcher (lepidosaur reptiles)
    • Dr. Eudald Mujal Grané (Barcelona) - postdoctoral researcher (vertebrate fossillagerstätten)

    Guest Researchers (Projects with research group

    • Prof. Hans-Dieter Sues (Washington): 2011-2012 - Humboldt Research Award
      • Estevan Eltink (Sao Paulo): DAAD (PhD), 2012-2013
      • Tiago Raugust (Porto Alegre): DAAD (PhD) 2012
      • Dr. Peggy Vincent (Paris): 2011-2012 - Humboldt Fellowship (Postdoc)
        • Dr. Erin Maxwell (Montreal): 2010-2011 - Humboldt Fellowship (Postdoc)
          • Prof. Jiang Da-yong (Beijing): 2008-2009 - DFG/ Chinese Science Foundation
            • Dr. Zhou Changfu (Shenyang): 2008 - Chin.-Germ. Cooperation (state level)
              • Dr. Julia Desojo (Buenos Aires): 2008 - Humboldt Fellowship (Postdoc)
                • Prof. Robert Reisz (Toronto): 2007-2008 - Humboldt Award
                  • Dr. David Gower (London): 2007, 2008 - Natural History Museum 
                    • Dr. Sophie Sanchez (Paris): 2007 - PhD 
                      • Stephanie Gastou (Paris): 200-2007 - Master 
                        • Dr. Ross J. Damiani (Melbourne): 2005-2007 - Humboldt Fellowship (Postdoc)
                          • Dr. Juan Cisneros (Rio de Janeiro): 2006
                            • Dr. Sterling Nesbitt (New York): 2005, 2006
                              • Dr. Fabien Knoll (Paris): 2004-2006 - Humboldt Fellowship (Postdoc)
                                • Prof. Andrew R. Milner (London): 2002; 2003; 2004; 2007 - Leverhulme Trust, etc.