Meet our Bone Detectives
Did you know that our teeth and bones hold many secrets?
(14 Feb 2020) » More about meet our Bone Detectives
Vital rainfall belt at risk from climate change
Our researchers have found that future climate warming could put a tropical rainfall belt relied upon by billions of people at risk
(14 Feb 2020) » More about Vital rainfall belt at risk from climate change
Learning from nature to tackle global challenges
The solutions to some of the most pressing global challenges could be right under our noses, in the trees, plants and insects around us.
(12 Feb 2020) » More about Learning from nature to tackle global challenges
Archaeologists unearth Durham’s earliest known resident
Durham is well known for its inspiring World Heritage Site, home to the 900-year-old Durham Castle and Cathedral. But our archaeologists have now found proof that people have been living in the area for at least 2,000 years.
Rare Viking-age board game piece found
Our archaeologists have helped unearth a 1,200 year old board game piece on a small island off the coast of north east England.
(11 Feb 2020) » More about Rare Viking-age board game piece found
Animal spotting project helps double children’s mammal knowledge
A citizen science project we ran in schools has dramatically increased children’s knowledge of UK wild mammals.
UK Government minister praises inspiring research and innovation at Durham
Our researchers are tackling some of the biggest challenges facing the world today, from improving soil health in Africa to working to prevent natural disasters in Southern Asia. So it was great to be able to show Chris Skidmore, the UK Government’s Universities Minister, some examples of our research and innovation in action.
Unearthing Britain’s medieval past
Our archaeologists have unearthed the secrets of Britain’s most powerful bishops to teach us more about the country’s medieval past.
(21 Jan 2020) » More about Unearthing Britain’s medieval past
Influential Durham law expert made honorary QC
A Durham law expert who has championed women in the legal profession and shaped new laws on extreme pornography and upskirting has been appointed an honorary Queen’s Counsel (QC).
(16 Jan 2020) » More about Influential Durham law expert made honorary QC
Professor recognised for contribution to dyslexia understanding
One of our leading education experts has been recognised for his work to improve our understanding of reading disability.
Baby sleep expertise leads to new bedsharing advice
Research by our baby sleep experts has led to new international guidance on bedsharing.
That’s a wrap 2019
As 2019 has now drawn to a close, we are taking the opportunity to look back and celebrate some of our highlights of the past year here at Durham, and here’s just a handful! We can’t wait to see what 2020 will bring.
(2 Jan 2020) » More about That’s a wrap 2019
Watching TV makes us prefer thinner women
Films, adverts and reality TV shows don’t always paint a realistic picture of women’s body shapes but how much influence does TV have on our preferences?
(19 Dec 2019) » More about Watching TV makes us prefer thinner women
Changing the world through collaboration
Collaboration helps our research make a difference both close to home and further afield, something we celebrated at our recent Impact and Engagement awards.
(18 Dec 2019) » More about Changing the world through collaboration
Five cool things about our Cosmology & Astronomy research
Research at Durham isn’t just confined to life here on Earth.
Sharing our 350-year-old library with the world
We’re proud to be home to the earliest public library in the North East of England, Cosin’s Library, established in 1669 by John Cosin, Bishop of Durham for the benefit of the local community.
(17 Dec 2019) » More about Sharing our 350-year-old library with the world
Enduring interest in the fate of the Scottish Soldiers
In the six years since we found a mass grave of 17th century prisoners on Durham University land, our Scottish Soldiers Archaeology Project has captivated thousands of people across the world.
Greenland ice losses rising faster than expected
Greenland is losing ice seven times faster than in the 1990s, shows a new study by an international research team including Durham University.
(10 Dec 2019) » More about Greenland ice losses rising faster than expected
Durham researchers named among world’s best
At Durham we’ve long had a global reputation for the high standard and impact of our research.
(6 Dec 2019) » More about Durham researchers named among world’s best
Universities ‘should have legal duty’ to fight sexual violence
Universities in the UK should have new legal duties to prevent and respond effectively to sexual violence and harassment on campus, according to a survey of selected higher education staff whose views were analysed in a new study.
Air pollution and the ethics of recommending facemasks
Record levels of air pollution have been measured in some parts of the world posing a danger to human health.
Supporting our technicians
Our technical staff play an important part in our ongoing success, so we’re proud to be supporting our technical community through the Technician Commitment.
(22 Nov 2019) » More about Supporting our technicians
Durham ranked in world top 100 for Physical Sciences
We’ve once again been ranked in the world top 100 for our strengths in Physical Sciences in an international league table.
(19 Nov 2019) » More about Durham ranked in world top 100 for Physical Sciences
Five thousand eyes on the sky
A cutting-edge new telescope instrument designed and built by an international team including Durham University has taken its first observations of the night sky.
(18 Nov 2019) » More about Five thousand eyes on the sky
India’s National Academy of Sciences honours Durham researcher
One of our leading researchers is to be honoured by India’s oldest science academy.
National Energy Champion award for geothermal researcher
Research into the potential of using geothermal energy as a low-carbon heat source has won a national award for one of our leading researchers.
Is social media a plague we can’t escape?
(14 Oct 2019) » More about Is social media a plague we can’t escape?
Stemettes inspire the next generation of women in tech
Anne-Marie Imafidon is Head Stemette and cofounder of Stemettes – an award-winning social enterprise inspiring the next generation of females into Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics.
Is Planet 9 really a black hole?
Is there a black hole in our solar system?
(10 Oct 2019) » More about Is Planet 9 really a black hole?
Leading social scientists awarded Fellowships of the Academy of Social Sciences
Following an extensive peer review process, five of our academic colleagues have been awarded Fellowships by the Academy of Social Sciences, the UK’s national academy of academics, learned societies and practitioners in the social sciences. They are recognised for the excellence and impact of their work through the use of social science for public benefit.
Observing the Cosmic Web
The Cosmic Web is believed to contain huge threads of gas that connect multiple galaxies across the universe.
(4 Oct 2019) » More about Observing the Cosmic Web
Should summer-born pupils be treated differently?
Evidence shows that children who are among the youngest in their year at school do less well on average than their autumn-born classmates.
(3 Oct 2019) » More about should summer-born pupils be treated differently?
Durham geothermal energy expertise at UK Conservative Party conference
Delegates at the UK Conservative Party annual conference have heard how Durham’s research could provide a long-term, sustainable source of low-carbon energy.
Why our extreme porn laws need to change
A law against possession of rape pornography, introduced in 2015, is very rarely used with few charges and prosecutions.
(1 Oct 2019) » More about Why our extreme porn laws need to change
Durham UK lead on hydrogen fuel research
We’re leading a national research project to decarbonise transport through hydrogen-fuelled vehicles and technology.
(30 Sep 2019) » More about Durham UK lead on hydrogen fuel research
Thousands of meltwater lakes mapped on East Antarctic Ice Sheet
More than 65,000 meltwater lakes have been discovered on the edge of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet by our researchers.
New enterprise zone to work with industry
From developing a mesh coating that could help clean up oil spills to finding greener energy alternatives, our research is really making a difference.
Now, we’ve been awarded over £1.4m to develop premises in the North East of England for businesses where they can collaborate with our world-leading research experts.
(20 Sep 2019) » More about New enterprise zone to work with industry
Recognition for rising stars of research
Two pioneering researchers - one who is improving telescope images of space and the other studying the environmentally damaging practice of sand mining - have received national recognition for their work.
(20 Sep 2019) » More about recognition for rising stars of research
Greenland is melting but it’s the tip of the iceberg
Rapid melting of glaciers in Greenland is causing major concern but we know from many years of research that the problem is much more widespread.
(19 Sep 2019) » More about Greenland is melting but it’s the tip of the iceberg
Why humans take so long to grow up
Why do our children take so long to grow up, compared to other animals?
(18 Sep 2019) » More about why humans take so long to grow up
The heat beneath our feet
Old coal mines could provide us with a source of low-carbon heat for many years to come, according to geothermal energy expert Dr Charlotte Adams, who is the new President of the Geology section at the British Science Association.
Here, Charlotte, who is a member of our Durham Energy Institute, explains more about her research into how water stored in flooded abandoned mines could provide cleaner energy for homes and businesses.
(17 Sep 2019) » More about The heat beneath our feet
Developing cheaper and more efficient solar power
Our scientists have helped to solve a puzzle that could lead to cheaper and more efficient solar power.
(16 Sep 2019) » More about Developing cheaper and more efficient solar power
Support for voice-hearers goes online
People who hear voices, their families and mental health professionals will benefit from a new information and support website based on research by Durham University.
(11 Sep 2019) » More about Support for voice-hearers goes online
Five cool things about our environmental research
From decarbonising heat to food security and water sustainability, we’re working to bring about improvements that will benefit nature and the well-being of the planet.
(5 Sep 2019) » More about Five cool things about our environmental research
Improving working conditions in Africa
Millions of people worldwide work in low-waged, insecure jobs that don’t provide a decent living with many also working in unsafe conditions that deny fundamental rights.
(5 Sep 2019) » More about Improving working conditions in Africa
A new home for the archive of ‘Radical Jack’
A political firebrand, a radical reformist and a leading society figure – the life and times of John George Lambton, first Earl of Durham, were truly captivating.
Durham University is now the new home to the archives of Lord Durham, as he was also known, whose energetic support for political reform earned him the nickname ‘Radical Jack’.
(30 Aug 2019) » More about A new home for the archive of ‘Radical Jack’
Smart surfaces as a solution to global challenges
Professor Jas Pal Badyal, a Fellow of the Royal Society, is widely considered a leader in the field of surface science. Here he talks about the students in his team, their inventions and tackling global challenges.
(22 Aug 2019) » More about smart surfaces as a solution to global challenges
Keeping Africa moving in a changing climate
Durham’s engineers are working with partners in Africa to find ways to use cheaper and more sustainable local materials to build all-weather, low-traffic roads and railway lines.
(21 Aug 2019) » More about Keeping Africa moving in a changing climate
Revealing quasars’ true colours
Our astronomers have identified a rare moment in the life of some of the universe’s most energetic objects.
(7 Aug 2019) » More about Revealing quasars’ true colours
Five cool things our surface scientists do
Surface science can make a big difference to our health, well-being and environment.
(5 Aug 2019) » More about Five cool things our surface scientists do
Malaysian Minister of Education visits Durham
The University has hosted a visit by the Malaysian Minister of Education to celebrate a new partnership that will see an important collection of diplomatic papers digitised for study in South East Asia.
(26 Jul 2019) » More about Malaysian Minister of Education visits Durham
Prestigious fellowships awarded to two academics
We’re celebrating after two of our academics were awarded Fellowships by the British Academy, the UK’s national academy for the humanities and social sciences.
(23 Jul 2019) » More about Prestigious fellowships awarded to two academics
Measuring the expanding universe
Our physicists will help create a 3D map of galaxies to learn more about the universe’s accelerating expansion.
(17 Jul 2019) » More about Measuring the expanding universe
Chameleon Theory could change our thoughts on gravity
Einstein’s theory of General Relativity is world famous – but it might not be the only way to explain how gravity works and how galaxies form.
How a tiny bug inspires surfaces that don’t get wet
A tiny bug is the inspiration for research that could one day provide clean water or help ships sail more efficiently.
Celebrating women who make a difference
At Durham we’re proud to be home to incredible women who are making a difference in the world.
(3 Jul 2019) » More about Celebrating women who make a difference
Giving women a voice in disaster risk reduction
Women in Nepal are having a say in how to reduce the risk of disasters like fires and landslides.
(3 Jul 2019) » More about Giving women a voice in disaster risk reduction
Big honours for two scientists who explore the very small
The research coming out of our world-leading Physics Department is changing our understanding of the world around us, from the smallest building blocks of matter to the vastness of the Universe.
So we’re very proud that two of our quantum physicists have received prestigious awards from the Institute of Physics, the UK and Ireland’s professional body for practicing physicists.
Celebrating world class arts and humanities
Performances from a poet, a playwright and a musician were part of our annual research showcase for arts and humanities at Durham, a subject area ranked in the world top 30.
(2 Jul 2019) » More about celebrating world class arts and humanities
How unwanted sexual images are shattering lives
Imagine if you had a sexual image of yourself shared online without your consent. Sadly, this happens all too often and can be absolutely devastating for the victim.
(1 Jul 2019) » More about How unwanted sexual images are shattering lives
Permanent headstone marks Scottish soldiers resting place
The headstone has been installed at the grave of the 17th Century Scottish soldiers buried in Durham City, providing a permanent marker of their resting place.
Reducing the plastic mountain
Every single minute, a truck load of plastic ends up in our oceans, killing millions of animals every year. This is only going to get worse unless we do something about it.
(26 Jun 2019) » More about Reducing the plastic mountain
Reviving the music of great composers
We’re helping to bring the forgotten music of two great classical composers back to life.
(26 Jun 2019) » More about Reviving the music of great composers
A simple mesh to clean up oil spills
Oil spills happen frequently ranging from large ones like the 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster to smaller ones on industrial sites. All have a damaging impact on the environment and wildlife.
(24 Jun 2019) » More about A simple mesh to clean up oil spills
Celebrating four great female philosophers
Is time real? Do we have free will? Philosophical questions such as these seem to have little connection with current issues like the climate crisis or Brexit.
(20 Jun 2019) » More about celebrating four great female philosophers
US military bigger polluter than most countries
Surprised by the headline? No wonder when discussions about greenhouse gas emissions tend to focus on statistics for countries, not institutions. But research from our Department of Geography, in partnership with Lancaster University, found that the US military’s carbon footprint is so big it out ranks that of most countries in the world.
(19 Jun 2019) » More about US military bigger polluter than most countries
We’re a World Top 100 university
Durham University has again been ranked as a World Top 100 university – putting us in the top eight per cent of universities worldwide in a new league table.
(19 Jun 2019) » More about We’re a World Top 100 university
Bringing no man’s land to life online
Virtual Reality and 3D modelling have been used to bring some of the world’s hidden areas to life online.
(18 Jun 2019) » More about Bringing no man’s land to life online
A city that's more afraid of tigers than earthquakes
People living in one of Nepal’s biggest cities are more worried about attacks by tigers and rhinos than a repeat of the earthquake that caused devastation a little over four years ago.
From food flavourings to biofuels, metals are key
We all know that metals like iron and calcium are essential for a healthy body - but our pioneering scientists estimate that almost half of life’s processes depend upon various metals interacting with living cells.
(17 May 2019) » More about from food flavourings to biofuels, metals are key
Universities would be £4.5m poorer without chaplains
University chaplains play an important role in the lives of students of many different faiths and are believed to contribute around £4.5 million per year of volunteer labour to the UK Higher Education sector.
Star award for dark matter research
A Durham astrophysicist has been named as a rising star of research and innovation for her work on the mysterious substance that makes up a large part of the universe.
(7 May 2019) » More about Star award for dark matter research
Students showcase research at Westminster
Our students have visited Parliament to show how technology normally used to explain the mysteries of the universe can create clearer X-ray images of humans.
(7 May 2019) » More about Students showcase research at Westminster
How to keep your bones strong
Think you should slow down as you get older? Think again!
(25 Apr 2019) » More about how to keep your bones strong
Online course brings Scottish soldiers project to the world
Durham University has launched an online archaeology course to give people around the world the chance to study one of its most captivating research projects, relating to the fate of the prisoners from the Battle of Dunbar in 1650.
Top jobs still lack diversity and equality
Privately educated, white, male graduates are more likely to be recruited to senior roles and be paid higher wages by elite multinational firms, new research shows.
(18 Apr 2019) » More about top jobs still lack diversity and equality
Why elite cyclists should talk to astronauts
It is well known that the bones of astronauts can become weak from being in space. But did you know that elite cyclists can lose a similar amount of bone density during a racing season?
(2 Apr 2019) » More about Why elite cyclists should talk to astronauts
Saving coffee using space technology
We drink two billion cups of coffee every day – 95 million cups in the UK alone.
(29 Mar 2019) » More about Saving coffee using space technology
Improved housing in Africa could prevent disease
Housing in sub-Saharan Africa has dramatically improved and could help in the fight against diseases such as malaria.
(28 Mar 2019) » More about Improved housing in Africa could prevent disease
Ancient royal charter discovered in Durham
An ancient royal charter might not be what everyone expects to find when they come to work, but for one of our visiting fellows that’s exactly what happened.
(26 Mar 2019) » More about Ancient royal charter discovered in Durham
Making water more sustainable
Water is a precious and vital resource that is under threat from climate change and growing demands.
(21 Mar 2019) » More about Making water more sustainable
Tackling risks from outer space
Space is a risky place. Our planet faces a number of potential threats from asteroids and comets to the impact of space weather on vital technologies.
(19 Mar 2019) » More about Tackling risks from outer space
Plan to grow North’s chemicals sector
Did you know that the North of England’s research strengths in chemical and process industries could help to contribute more than £20billion to the UK economy over the next 20 years?
(18 Mar 2019) » More about Plan to grow North’s chemicals sector
Training the next generation of global problem solvers
Tropical diseases, water and food security, and flooding are some of the issues being tackled by our new training centre dedicated to global challenges.
How to keep sleeping babies safe
How best to keep babies safe when they’re asleep has been a focus of research by our specialists for more than 20 years.
(11 Mar 2019) » More about How to keep sleeping babies safe
#BalanceforBetter: A royal celebration of Women, Peace and Security
Two of our leading researchers celebrated International Women’s Day at an event in Buckingham Palace to mark 20 years of Women, Peace and Security.
Durham professor appointed to UK’s Infected Blood Inquiry
A Durham University professor is giving her expertise to an Inquiry looking at how men, women and children in the UK received infected blood products.
Gambling apps encourage futile betting
Low-value bets and video game-style play may make smartphone gambling apps seem like harmless fun. But could they be encouraging people to play even when it is no longer possible to win?
(22 Feb 2019) » More about Gambling apps encourage futile betting
World top six ranking for space science
Durham University’s astrophysicists have been ranked joint sixth in the world for the quality and influence of their research in space science.
(19 Feb 2019) » More about World top six ranking for space science
Medieval thinking meets modern research
Imagine being able to step back in time and see how a great mind of the past understood our world, or experience how food and drink tasted hundreds of years ago.
Well, research led by Durham University is allowing people to do just that.
(15 Feb 2019) » More about Medieval thinking meets modern research
New Vice-Provost (Research) appointed
We are pleased to announce that Professor Colin Bain has been appointed as Vice-Provost (Research).
(14 Feb 2019) » More about the appointment of our new Vice-Provost (Research)
Should fish and chips portions be smaller?
Next time you go for your fish and chips, you might be able to choose your portion size.
(7 Feb 2019) » More about should fish and chips portions be smaller?
Does Santa need a passport?
We all know that Santa Claus lives at the North Pole. But what is his citizenship? Who collects taxes from the elves’ workshop? And how is this all being affected by climate change?
(19 Dec 2018) » More about does Santa need a passport?
Putting clean growth on the map
The Durham Energy Institute’s (DEI) work on geothermal energy has featured on an interactive map showcasing innovation across small businesses and organisations in the UK.
(17 Dec 2018) » More about Putting clean growth on the map
Bioenergy crops could damage biodiversity
Increasing the use of bioenergy is seen as one of the most important ways in which countries could help to meet climate change targets. However, researchers are warning that this could be just as damaging for global biodiversity as climate change itself.
(11 Dec 2018) » More about Bioenergy crops could damage biodiversity
Festival drug checking can reduce drug-related harm
One of the biggest dangers for people who take illegal drugs at festivals is knowing what has been supplied to them – in terms of contents, strength and contaminants.
Play with time at Oriental Museum exhibition
Visitors to the Oriental Museum can explore the physics and philosophy of time at a new interactive exhibition.
(19 Oct 2018) » More about Play with time at Oriental Museum exhibition
Avalanche – making a deadly snowstorm
Explosives, snow and a car were used to trigger an avalanche in an episode of BBC2’s Horizon Programme to reveal more about the mystery behind this natural rollercoaster. The experiment was led by avalanche expert, Professor Jim McElwaine, from Durham University’s Earth Sciences department.
(18 Oct 2018) » More about Avalanche – making a deadly snowstorm
Astronomers identify far flung galaxies
Astronomers have captured a spectacular image of a massive galaxy cluster embedded among nearly thousands of previously unseen galaxies scattered across space and time.
(13 Sep 2018) » More about Astronomers identify far flung galaxies
North-South divide in chronic pain
England has a North-South ‘pain divide’, with a clear geographical split in the prevalence and intensity of chronic pain and the use of potentially addictive opioid pain killers, shows new research.
(12 Sep 2018) » More about North-South divide in chronic pain
Protecting against volcanic ash
A first of its kind study, led by Dr Claire Horwell of the Department of Earth Sciences and Institute of Hazard, Risk and Resilience, has found that industry-certified particle masks are most effective at protecting people from volcanic ash, whilst commonly used surgical masks offer less protection.
(11 Sep 2018) » More about Protecting against volcanic ash
Funding boost for Strategy delivery
Durham University has successfully secured £225 million of borrowing through a private placement.
(30 Aug 2018) » More about Funding boost for Strategy delivery
Earthquake research could improve seismic forecasts
The timing and size of three deadly earthquakes that struck Italy in 2016 may have been pre-determined, according to new research that could improve future earthquake forecasts.
(23 Aug 2018) » More about Earthquake research could improve seismic forecasts
Physicists reveal oldest galaxies
Some of the faintest satellite galaxies orbiting our own Milky Way galaxy are amongst the very first that formed in our Universe, physicists have found.
(17 Aug 2018) » More about Physicists reveal oldest galaxies
Outstanding partnership helps reduce power outages
Power outages caused by trees falling on power lines are being reduced as a result of a research partnership involving a Durham University Research Fellow and an international company.
(17 Jul 2018) » More about Outstanding partnership helps reduce power outages
European dogs wiped out ancient American breeds
The arrival of Europeans to the Americas, beginning in the 15th Century, all but wiped out the dogs that had lived alongside native people on the continent for thousands of years, according to new research published in Science.
(6 Jul 2018) » More about European dogs wiped out ancient American breeds
Archaeologists reveal castle’s medieval secrets
Medieval mysteries, hidden beneath the grounds of a 900-year-old British castle, have been uncovered during a major archaeological excavation.
(3 Jul 2018) » More about Archaeologists reveal castle’s medieval secrets
Cataclysmic collision shaped Uranus’ evolution
Uranus was hit by a massive object roughly twice the size of Earth that caused the planet to tilt and could explain its freezing temperatures, according to new research.
(3 Jul 2018) » More about Cataclysmic collision shaped Uranus’ evolution
Honouring the physicists of the future
Durham University has honoured the next generation of scientists at its annual Schools Physicist of the Year awards.
(3 Jul 2018) » More about Honouring the physicists of the future
Understanding Antarctic ice sheet changes
The West Antarctic Ice Sheet was able to re-grow after shrinking but the process is not fast enough to combat the impact of today’s climate change, according to research involving Durham University.
(18 Jun 2018) » More about Understanding Antarctic ice sheet changes
Exhibition tells the story of 17th Century Scottish soldiers
The story of the Seventeenth Century Scottish soldiers, whose remains were discovered in two mass burial sites in Durham City in 2013, is the subject of a major new exhibition at Durham University’s Palace Green Library.
Discovering how humans can see with sound
Human echolocation enables people to ‘see’ with their ears and build a picture of the world around them. The technique involves making sharp mouth clicks and then translating the sound reflected by surrounding objects into spatial information – a method also used by whales, dolphins and bats.
(5 Jun 2018) » More about discovering how humans can see with sound
Seventeenth Century Scottish soldiers reburied in Durham
The remains of Seventeenth Century Scottish soldiers, discovered during construction work at the University’s Palace Green Library in 2013, have been reburied in Durham City.
Could a Multiverse be hospitable to life?
A Multiverse – where our Universe is only one of many – might not be as inhospitable to life as previously thought, according to new research.
(14 May 2018) » More about Could a Multiverse be hospitable to life?
Research into manufacture of life-saving drug wins industry-sponsored award
Durham University chemists have won a national award for research that could increase the availability of an effective treatment for a strain of meningitis in less developed countries.
Dark matter might not be interactive after all
Astronomers are back in the dark about what dark matter might be, after new observations showed the mysterious substance may not be interacting with forces other than gravity after all.
(6 Apr 2018) » More about Dark matter might not be interactive after all
Grammar schools could be damaging to social mobility
Grammar schools are no better or worse than non-selective state schools in terms of attainment, but can be damaging to social mobility, according to new research by Durham University.
(27 Mar 2018) » More about grammar schools could be damaging to social mobility
Man-made earthquake risk reduced if fracking is 895m from faults
The risk of man-made earthquakes due to fracking is greatly reduced if high-pressure fluid injection used to crack underground rocks is 895m away from faults in the Earth’s crust, according to new research.
Neanderthals were artistic like modern humans, study suggests
Researchers have found the first major evidence that Neanderthals, rather than modern humans, created the world’s oldest known cave paintings – suggesting they may have had an artistic sense similar to our own.