The Environmental Archaeology Lab at the University of Arkansas is focused on reconstructing the dynamics of human – environmental interactions that affected Holocene archaeological societies. The lab is dedicated to facilitating integrative, cross-disciplinary research to investigate how groups responded to past physical climate variability, and also how the ecological strategies archaeological societies employed created lasting anthropogenic change.
Two basic approaches are used by researchers in the lab: Geographic Information Science and Remote Sensing (GIS-RS) form the core of a geospatial program. This research uses satellite remote sensing to identify archaeological sites, analyze modern environmental analogues, and to evaluate the effects of archaeological land use on modern ecology. GIS is used to model past settlement and environmental dynamics. We further use geospatial agent-based models (ABM) to evaluate how cultural, environmental, and climatic factors intersect in ecological behaviors.
The Environmental Archaeology Lab actively works to establish collaborations between archaeologists and environmental scientists, in order to reconstruct past human-environmental interactions. The facility is equipped to receive and analyze sediment cores for climate proxies. Researchers in the lab work closely with the Stable Isotope Lab at the University of Arkansas, as well as with palaeoclimatologists at the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, University of Pittsburgh, and University of Alabama.
Our main area of research is in the Peruvian Andes and other regions of Latin American, but past research has taken place in the Mediterranean, Near East, and East and South-East Asia. We welcome opportunities to collaborate. Please see the information on the Contact page if you are interested.