What is COREX?

Which came first: Climate changes or social and economic changes? How did cultural and genetic changes influence each other? And what caused people to migrate?

“These are some of the big questions that the project will answer,” says Kristian Kristiansen, Professor in Archaeology at the University of Gothenburg, one of the COREX projects Principle Investigators (PI).

By combining novel modelling approaches with archaeology and large quantities of data and analyses – including everything from prehistoric genetic material (aDNA) to climate data – the research team aims to discover and explain the key processes behind the genetic and cultural diversity in Europe. The researchers will investigate the period from the first farmers around 6,000 years BCE, to the end of the Bronze Age around 500 years BCE.

The project has been awarded an ERC Synergy Grant by the European Research Council (ERC).

What is aDNA?

Ancient DNA (aDNA) is genetic material from ancient organisms.

Due to its high age, aDNA often has a higher degradation than modern DNA.

Cheaper research methods and better sequencing techniques have revolutionized the study of aDNA since 2009.

It is now possible to sequence aDNA material that is up to 0.4-1.5 million years old. 

Through cheaper analyses the aDNA record available in archaeology has grown considerably enabling large scale research projects such as COREX.