Wu 1981 provided a description of the Dali cranium and proposed assigning it to the subspecies Homo sapiens daliensis. Specifically, Wu (1981 p. 539) stated, "It is suggested that Dali (sic) cranium probably represents a new subspecies, Homo sapiens daliensis. " The use of the words, “suggested” and “probably” signal a conditional proposal under Article 15 of the Code. However, in the abstract the intent is more clear. There the author stated, "The cranium differs from Neanderthals in a number of racial characteristics. It is therefore considered here a new subspecies: Homo sapiens daliensis.” The differences between the body of the text and the abstract raises the question of whether the Code should be applied to an entire publication or to segments of a publication. Unfortunately, this issue affects other hominin nomina as well, e.g. Australopithecus africanus aethiopicus Tobias, 1980b and Tchadanthropus uxoris Coppens, 1969. For consistency, any stated reservations are taken to apply to the entirety of the publication and thus Homo sapiens daliensis is unavailable, as are the other examples.
Groves (1989) listed Homo sapiens daliensis Wu, 1981 as a subjective synonym for Homo sapiens mapaensis Kurth, 1965. Groves (2017) treated Dali and Jinniushan as Homo heidelbergensis. Bae (2010) discussed the merits of invoking Homo mabaensis for Middle Pleistocene premodern Homo from southeast Asian and Homo daliensis for the taxon in northeast Asia, ulitmately concluding that it is best to retain the term, 'archaic Homo sapiens". Manzi (2016) employed the nomen as Homo heidelbergensis daliensis. Multivariate analysis by Athreya and Wu (2017) indicated a mosaic pattern exhibiting derived features in the face and primitive features in the neurocranium. These authors refrained from making a taxonomic determination based on these results.