William Boyd Dawkins (26 December 1838 - 1929) was a British geologist and archaeologist.
Born at Buttington vicarage near Welshpool, Montgomeryshire, Dawkins was educated at Rossall School and Oxford. He joined the Geological Survey in 1862, and in 1869 became curator of the Manchester museum, a post which he retained till 1890. He was appointed professor of geology and palaeontology in Owens College, Manchester, in 1874.
He paid special attention to the question of the existence of coal in Kent, and in 1882 was selected by the Channel tunnel committee to make a special survey of the French and English coasts. He was also employed in the scheme of a tunnel beneath the Humber. His chief distinctions, however, were won in the realms of archaeology by his researches into the lives of the cave-dwellers of prehistoric times, labors which have borne fruit in his books Cave-hunting (1874); Early Man in Britain (1880); and British Pleistocene Mammalia (1866-1887). He became a Fellow of the Royal Society in 1867, and acted as president of the anthropological section of the British Association in 1882 and of the geological section in 1888.