Professor of Archaeology at the University of Gothenburg
Archaeologist Kristian Kristiansen was born in Denmark, he is professor of archaeology at University of Gothenburg since 1994, and since 2020 he is affiliate professor at the Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen. He has initiated and led archaeological projects in Sicily, Hungary, Sweden and Denmark. He was co-founder and first president of the European Association of Archaeologists.
His research covers a broad spectrum of archaeological themes from heritage and the role of the past in the present, to a comparative global prehistory, mainly focused on western Eurasia during the Neolithic and the Bronze Age. Throughout his career he has collaborated with natural scientists, from pollen botanists to geneticists. He was one of the initiators of the ‘mobility turn’ in archaeology by developing new methodological and theoretical models for prehistoric mobility and migration, notably in his book with Thomas Larsson: ‘The Rise of Bronze Age Society’. He has published 24 books, of which five at Cambridge University Press, and more than 150 papers in international journals and books. Since 2011 he collaborated with Eske Willerslev in an Advanced grant from the European Research Council. Among his recent projects ‘Towards a new European Prehistory’is funded by the Swedish Riksbank foundation, and the ERC Synergy project Corex, starting 2021. He has 30.000 followers at Academia.edu, among the top 1%, with 330.000 views.
Among his awards are The British Academy Graham Clark Medal, and the Prehistoric Society’s Europa Prize. He is an Honorary doctor at Oslo University, and an Honorary fellow of Society of Antiquaries London. In 2005 he received the European Archaeological Heritage Prize, and in 2007 he received the Society of American Archaeology’s book prize. He is a fellow of the Royal Swedish Academy of Letters, History and Antiquities, as well as corresponding fellow of the British Academy.
Kurt H. Kjær
Section for Geogenetics at the GLOBE Institute, University of Copenhagen
Kurt holds a Ph.D. and professorship in Quaternary science with emphasis on reconstruction of past and modern glacial environments. He is also leading a research group within past dynamics and mass chances of the Greenland Ice Sheet as well as palaeoenvironmental reconstructions, which also span topics towards exploring new methods such as ancient genetics. Overall this provides a wide-range scientific network within the Quaternary sciences as documented from his publication activity. Kurt has extensive fieldwork experience outside mainland Scandinavia during twenty-six field seasons (each 4-8 weeks long) beginning in 1993: Northern Russia: 6 seasons; Svalbard: 2 seasons; Iceland: 12 seasons; Greenland: 7 seasons. In fifteen of these research expeditions, Kurt had the full leadership and responsibility. Kurt has managed to retrieve 4.5 million euros for research grants involving larger projects, infrastructure and instruments.
Professor of Evolutionary Genetics
Mark Thomas is Professor of Evolutionary Genetics at University College London and works mainly on biological and cultural aspects of human evolution. He uses computer simulation and statistical modelling to make inferences from genetic data – including ancient DNA – and archaeological information, on processes such as past migrations and dispersals, natural selection – particularly in response to changes in diet and infectious disease loads – and how demography shapes cultural evolution.
Professor of Theoretical Archaeology at the UCL Institute of Archaeology
Stephen Shennan is Professor of Theoretical Archaeology at the UCL Institute of Archaeology, where he was Director 2005–2014. He did his PhD at Cambridge with David Clarke then taught for a number of years at Southampton before moving to UCL in 1996.
He is a specialist in the European Neolithic and Bronze Age and his main theoretical interest is in explaining stability and change in prehistoric societies and economies in the light of evolutionary ideas. He has published over 170 papers as well as 28 edited and authored books, the latter including Quantifying Archaeology (2nd edition 1997), Genes, Memes and Human History (2002), and The First Farmers of Europe: An Evolutionary Perspective (2018). Recent projects include ‘The Cultural Evolution of Neolithic Europe (EUROEVOL)’, ‘Supply and demand in prehistory? Economics of Neolithic mining in NW Europe’ and ‘Changing the face of the Mediterranean: land cover and population since the advent of farming’. He is a Fellow of the British Academy and a member of the Academia Europaea. He received the Rivers Medal of the Royal Anthropological Institute in 2010 and a Shanghai Archaeological Forum Research Award for his EUROEVOL project in 2015.
Karin Margarita Frei
National Museum of Denmark
Prof. Karin Margarita Frei is an archaeometrist and director of the “Tales of Bronze Age People” research project and leads the multidisciplinary research team “Mobility Research Group” both hosted at the National Museum of Denmark.
She is an internationally recognized researcher in the field of prehistoric mobility, including studies based on strontium isotope analyses of human and animal remains as well as in studies aimed at constructing reference baselines/isoscapes of bioavailable strontium. She holds the first full professorship at the National Museum of Denmark, and is Denmark’s first professor in the interdisciplinary field of archaeometry.
Her research focuses on cross- and interdisciplinary research between both, natural sciences and humanities. She was the first to develop high-resolution tracing mobility techniques applied to single individuals from prehistory using the strontium isotope system. Besides her work in method development and method application she works today more specifically with the integration of scientific analytical results into cultural contextual frameworks.
She has a broad and very cross-disciplinary publication record which includes almost 100 peer reviewed articles (2021) in high-rank international journals like Nature, Scientific Reports, PlosOne, Antiquity, World Archaeology, Journal of Archaeological Science, etc. She has received several national and international research awards, among others the “Women in Science Award (L’Oreal)” and “Shanghai Archaeological Forum Research Award”. She is life member of The Danish Royal Academy of Sciences and Letters.
Evolutionary Geneticist and Director of the Lundbeck Foundation GeoGenetics Centre, University of Copenhagen.
Prof. Eske Willerslev is an evolutionary geneticist and the Director of the Lundbeck Foundation GeoGenetics Centre, situated at the University of Copenhagen.
He is an internationally recognized researcher in the fields of ancient DNA, DNA degradation, and evolutionary biology, and holds a full professorship at the University of Copenhagen, as well as the prestigious Prince Philip Professorship at the Department of Zoology, University of Cambridge.
During his PhD, Eske Willerslev established the first ancient DNA facility in Denmark and gained international renown for establishing the fields of ancient sedimentary and ice core genetics. Willerslev’s research in the last decade has also focused on macroregional history, population mobility and pathogens evolution. His achievements in this field have helped to understand ancient migration patterns and the spread of specific human traits across the world. This work has led to the rewriting of human history across Europe, Asia, Oceania, and the Americas, and has changed how we track human genetic adaptations.
Eske Willerslev has published 307 peer-reviewed articles (Scopus), including 63 publications in the journals Nature and Science (45of which as first or last author/corresponding author). He is among the Web of Science’s most Highly Cited researchers within two fields. He is a foreign associate of the United States National Academy of Sciences; a member of The European Molecular Biology Organization (EMBO) and the Royal Danish Academy of Sciences and Letters; and the holder of the Order of the Dannebrog (order of knighthood issued by her Majesty Queen Margrethe II of Denmark).
Bettina Schulz Paulsson
Senior Researcher, Department for Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg, Sweden
Dr Bettina Schulz Paulsson is a Swiss archaeologist specialized in scientific dating and methods and Bayesian statistics. Trained in Berlin, Germany, she attended the Human Development in Landscapes Graduate School at the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Science, Christian Albrechts-Universität in Kiel, where she obtained the PhD degree in Prehistoric archaeology in May 2015. In 2016 she won a Marie Sklodowska-Curie Research Fellowship at the Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg with a project on European megalithic art. Since 2018 she is employed as a researcher and lecturer at the department of Historical studies.
In 2020, Schulz Paulsson received an ERC Starting Grant for the project NEOSEA on early maritime technologies, the rise of seafaring within hunter and gatherer societies in Brittany and maritime transcultural encounters along the coast of megalithic Europe (4700-2500 cal BC).
As a Bayesian Modelling & Radiocarbon Data Analysis Statistical consultant, she has been leading the dating programmes in several national and international projects within contract archaeology as well as international research projects (e.g. the French project "Nécropoles Préhistoriques et Protohistoriques de Passy (Yonne)” and the Variscite in Neolithic Europe project). She has been given numerous workshops and trainings in radiocarbon dating and Bayesian statistics. Schulz Paulsson will coordinate the Bayesian modelling group of COREX.
School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences, University of Plymouth, UK
Jessie’s academic background is within biological sciences, global environmental change and physical geography. She is currently a Post-Doctoral Research Fellow carrying out research that aims to understand how human land-use practices have influenced past and present biodiversity patterns across the British Isles, and the consequences of this for modern conservation (Biodiversity and human land use project). Jessie has also carried out research into landscape, human population and climate change in the Mediterranean since the advent of farming in collaboration with archaeologists (Changing the face of the Mediterranean project), and research that aimed to reconstruct European landscape change through the Holocene using fossil pollen data (Deforesting Europe project). Jessie is also leading interdisciplinary research with social scientists into water security and the resilience of socio-ecological systems in the agricultural landscapes of Turkey (Kuruyan Kara (dryland) project), and research into past vegetation change, climate and wildfire in the UK (PeakFireRes project). Jessie has led or co-authored 40 peer-reviewed publications with international and interdisciplinary teams (H-Index: 21). Within the COREX project, Jessie will contribute expertise and analyses of fossil pollen data to produce land cover maps that will be used to explore the relationships between human migration and landscape change in the past.
Professor at the University of Plymouth
Ralph Fyfe has been a Professor at the University of Plymouth since 2016, and specialises in the reconstruction of past environmental change. His work has a particular emphasis on the interactions between past and present communities of people and vegetation change, with application in environmental archaeology, climate science and conservation and management of biodiversity. In addition to his involvement within the COREX project, he has helped coordinate research at the European scale within the PAGES landcover6k working group, and is an active senior researcher in the H2020 TERRANOVA International Training network. He has been PI of a series of Leverhulme Trust-funded projects since 2010, including the Deforesting Europe project, the Changing the Face of the Mediterranean project , collaborating with COREX member Prof Stephen Shennan, the Land use and Biodiversity project and the Reclaiming Exmoor project that focusses on landscape transitions over recent centuries. His research has also focussed on methodological innovation in the analysis of palaeo-vegetation data, particularly on the analysis of complex large databases such as the European Pollen Database . Since 2003, he has published 95 international peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters in the fields of environmental archaeology, archaeology, biogeography and landscape ecology, Quaternary Science and European vegetation history.
associate professor at the Lundbeck GeoGenetics Centre in the Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen.
Fernando Racimo is an associate professor at the Lundbeck GeoGenetics Centre in the Globe Institute, University of Copenhagen. His research group uses population and quantitative genetics to understand past evolutionary processes, with a particular focus on ancient DNA. Their projects include developing tests to detect patterns of natural selection in humans and other organisms, creating methods to integrate genomic and archaeological data, and inferring population movement processes in time and space. For more details, see: https://sites.google.com/site/fernandoracimo/home
UCL Division of Biosciences
Adrian's research is based around novel applications of computational modelling, statistical methods and big data analysis. His initial contribution to COREX will focus on data structure, databasebase management and analysis pipelines, and as the project matures he will focus on exploratory analyses, and developing discriminative and generative models.
Researcher at the Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg
Jelena Bulatović is an archaeozoologist and a researcher at the Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg. She gained her PhD degree in archaeology (2018) from the University of Belgrade. Her PhD thesis focused on archaeozoological aspects of the social and cultural changes in the central Balkans during the Neolithic-Eneolithic transition in the mid-5th millennium BC.
The scope of her work has been the economic, social and dietary aspects of animal use in the central and western Balkans since the Early Neolithic and the onset of agriculture (ca. 6000 BC) until the beginning of the Late Iron Age (ca. 400 BC). The main questions she is trying to answer in her research include how the strategies of animal exploitation changed over time at the local and regional levels. Although her main focus is on prehistoric periods, she has also engaged in numerous archaezoological analyses of Medieval and Ottoman Era sites.
She has analyzed animal remains from more than 40 prehistoric and historic archaeological sites in Serbia and other western Balkans countries. Jelena has been a collaborator on numerous Serbian and international (bio)archaeological projects, in which she has played an active role as archaeozoologist or archaeozoological advisor and in the selection and contextualization of samples from Balkan sites for various cutting-edge techniques and analyses. Since 2011, she has authored and co-authored 35 peer-reviewed publications. For the COREX project, Jelena will collect faunal data and will contribute to data analysis.
UCL Institute of Archaeology
Robert Staniuk is a Polish archaeologist. He acquired his PhD from Kiel University (2019) for research on the relationship between tradition and practice based on a multi-layered settlement from Bronze Age Carpathian Basin and the temporality of material culture change throughout the generations of its inhabitants. He has participated in excavation campaigns and research projects in Poland, Ukraine, Hungary, Serbia, and Slovakia. He is continuously engaged in Central European archaeology of the third and second millennium BC. Before COREX, Robert was a post-doc in CRC 1266 “Scales of Transformation: Human-Environmental Interaction in Prehistoric and Archaic Societies” focusing on the household archaeology of Europe’s first farmers in SE Slovakia. In his research he has focused on the temporality of past communities, specifically the transmission of practices in household contexts. In the COREX project, he is responsible for collecting data on material culture change from 6000-1000 BC in order to provide an archaeological basis for a new European prehistory.
Samantha S. Reiter
National Museum of Denmark
Sam’s research ties together archaeological, archaeometric and theoretical approaches to identity, mobility and culture change. Since 2017, Sam has been working at the National Museum of Denmark on integrating provenance data via strontium isotopic analysis to archaeological research, which will also be the theme of her participation in COREX. She has had a chronological focus on later European prehistory since 2010, though she has worked and excavated in various contexts throughout Europe as well as in the USA, Caribbean and Near East.
University of Gothenburg
Serena is Associate Professor of Archaeology at the University of Gothenburg and a scholar of European and Mediterranean Bronze and Early Iron Age Studies. Her research focus stretches from the study of long-distance metal trade and exchange networks, to that of textile production and wool economy, as well as to burial practices and issues of social complexity and identity. Serena is the current COREX coordinator, based at the University of Gothenburg. Besides Corex, she is the scientific director of the Missing Link project, of the Understanding Urban identity project and researcher in the Rise II project . She is also the Swedish representative in the Management Committee for the EuroWeb - Europe through Textiles network and the coordinator of the Gothenburg Bronze Age group seminars.
Research Associate/Ph.D Scholar at the department of historical studies, University of Gothenburg
Nicoline is an archaeologist with specialisation in isotope analysis, she gained her masters from the University of Oslo (2021). Her masters explored the subsistence network of the urban Viking Age towns based on the animal economy utilising a multi-isotopic approach. She focused on how different isotopic data could be combined to pertain to questions of import and socioeconomic networks and urban development. In addition, she has worked on different archaeological excavations in Norway with time periods spanning from the Stone Age to Medieval Period. Her contribution to the COREX project will be a PhD thesis exploring human mobility utilising strontium isotopes.
UCL Institute of Archaeology
Dr. Jan Kolář is an archaeologist interested in human-environment interactions in the past. He focuses on studying the relationship between major social and economic transformations, population dynamics, changes in land use and climate during the prehistory. In his research he often utilises large-scale archaeological databases and modelling approaches and combines the results with quantified outcomes of other disciplines, mostly palaeoecology.
He received his PhD from the Masaryk University in Brno (Czech Republic) in 2015. In his doctoral thesis he focused on investigating of the local interactions in the 3rd millennium BCE in the Czech Republic. During his studies he participated on dozens of excavations in the Czech Republic and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Before joining the COREX project he worked at the Institute of Botany of the Czech Academy of Sciences, where he participated on the project “Long-term woodland dynamics in Central Europe: from estimations to a realistic model” (http://longwood.cz) funded by the ERC (2012-2016) and he was a PI of the project “Land use, social transformations and woodland in Central European Prehistory. Modelling approaches to human-environment interactions” funded by the Czech Science Foundation (2019-2022). In 2017/2018 he was a Fulbright Research Fellow at the Department of Anthropology of the University of Pennsylvania. For his interdisciplinary research Jan received awards from the Czech Academy of Sciences and the Masaryk University.
University of Gothenburg
Natalia Ryabogina, Ph.D., studies pollen and plant remains at archaeological sites and nearby natural archives.
She focuses to elucidate the complex relationships between climate, plant communities (including economically significant species), and adaptive responses by humans. Her research has covered the shifts from foraging to farming economies and the broad area in between. She also explores the ways that agricultural intensification and the correlated demographic growth have further driven shifts in vegetation communities and landscape transformation from the Neolithic through modern times.
Her studies span much of the northern portion of the temperate zones of Eurasia, with projects in Northern Eurasia, Central Europe, the North Caucasus, Central Asia, Western Siberia, and the Russian Far East. More recently, she has been focusing on reconstructing vegetation history, climate alterations and identifying the stages of anthropogenic impact, including signs of deforestation, agriculture, and grazing pressure in the North Caucasus.
Natalia conducted research at the Russian Academy of Sciences (Department of Archaeological and Environmental Reconstructions at the Tyumen Scientific Center of the Siberian Branch RAS and at the Department of Archaeological Soil Science at the Pushchino Scientific Center for Biological Research RAS), as well as within the research stay of DAAD at the Archaeobotanical Laboratory of the Heidelberg University (Germany) and the research stay of Fulbright at Washington University in St. Louis (USA).
She joined the COREX project to continue the accumulation of archaeobotanical datasets and move from correlating large and diverse datasets to modeling and explaining the cultural diversity of Europe.
University of Copenhagen
Elisabetta Canteri is a researcher at the University of Copenhagen with a background in macroecology, biogeography and palaeoecology.
She has often used interdisciplinary approaches to study biodiversity and its responses to environmental changes and anthropogenic activities. Her main interest is in conservation biology and she always tries to find a conservation aspect in her research, with the idea that inferences from the past can help provide more informed predictions of the future.
She obtained the PhD degree at the University of Adelaide (Australia) and the University of Copenhagen (Denmark) with a thesis focusing on combining ecological models with information from paleo-archives, like fossils, ancient DNA and paleoclimate reconstructions, to gain a better understanding of how biodiversity responds to global change drivers in space and time.
For the COREX project, Elisabetta will analyze different sources of data available in BIAD to identify the drivers and consequences of changes in human mobility, diet, and faunal and floral composition in Western Eurasia during the Neolithic and Bronze Age transitions. Ultimately, this will help us gain new insights of the processes that influenced the relationship between humans and the environment in a period of profound genetic, social, cultural and environmental transformation.
University of Gothenburg, Sweden
Fredrik is one of the PhD students employed in the COREX project since 2022. He will contribute to COREX with the research for his thesis on the Bell beaker phenomenon, focusing on chronology, mobility, and migration during the transition from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age in Western- and Central Europe. As part of the COREX Bayesian modelling group, Fredrik is collecting and evaluating radiocarbon data for the BIAD database. He specializes in constructing precise chronologies using archaeological information such as radiocarbon dates, stratigraphy and typology in Bayesian statistical models.
Victor Yan Kin Lee
University of Copenhagen
Victor is a PhD student at the Globe Institute at the University of Copenhagen with a background in evolutionary genomics.
He has a broad interest in primate evolutionary genomics but is particularly fascinated by how genomics intersects with culture and environment in shaping human evolution. Prior to his PhD, he earned his master's degrees from Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München (Germany) and Uppsala University (Sweden) as part of the Erasmus Mundus Master Programme in Evolutionary Biology (MEME). During his master's studies, he applied information theory to investigate the effects of pleiotropy on the evolution of transcription factor binding site repertoires in primates. He also evaluated genotype imputation for low-coverage chimpanzee genomes.
As part of COREX, Victor's PhD research will focus on the spatiotemporal dynamics of human mobility and genetic adaptation in response to cultural and environmental changes from the Neolithic to the Bronze Age in Western Eurasia.
Researcher at the Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg
Claudia Speciale, PhD. is an Italian archaeobotanist. She worked for the project IsoCAN, funded by the European Research Council in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Canary Islands, Spain), about the subsistence systems of the first settlers of the Canary Islands. She was formerly a Post-Doc Researcher at the National Institute of Geophysics and Volcanology (Naples, Italy) leading Brains2Islands, a multidisciplinary project between Archaeology, Volcanology, Archaeobotany and Landscape Ecology. Her Ph.D. thesis (University of Salento, Italy) was on palaeodemographic dynamics and the use of vegetal resources on the Aeolian archipelago (Sicily, Italy). She is particularly interested in the interaction of humans with the prehistoric landscape and prehistoric subsistence systems. She took part to several inter-disciplinary research projects. She also coordinated an international working group on Mediterranean “Past, Present and Future Landscapes” – MISTRALS-CNRS-BIODIVMEX and she participates in projects as archaeobotanist (Copper/Bronze Age, Middle Ages in Sicily, Neolithic of Sicily and Cyprus) – developing the archaeobotanical analyses of around 30 archaeological sites.
UCL Institute of Archaeology
Peter's research explores methods for the measurement and description of change over time in cultural systems, especially with regard to traditionally non-quantifiable material. This can be accomplished through modelling of the variants themselves, as in his PhD work exploring change in motif frequencies on figure-painted Attic pottery, or by measuring changes in relation to a demographic proxy, as in his recent work on Neolithic stone tool mining and distribution. In the COREX project, he will populate a database of radiocarbon dates and other cultural indicators for use in comparative analysis.
Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg
Christian Horn is an Associate Professor of archaeology at the Department of Historical Studies at the University of Gothenburg specialized in digital archaeology, use wear analysis, and the archaeology of conflict. He and his team use artificial intelligence approaches and spatial modelling to study Scandinavian rock art and local societies of the Nordic Bronze Age. This work aims to study the regional and interregional interaction between different groups and their reaction to innovations, migrations, and competition. A second focus is on visualization methods for 3D data and combining natural scientific methods and the study of rock art to investigate the long-term engagement with these images.
Christian is the project coordinator of COREX at the University of Gothenburg, the current research coordinator of the Swedish Rock Art Research Archives (SHFA), and speaker of the “Working Group Bronze Age” (Germany). He is also managing the SHFA’s Instagram and YouTube account.