Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Members

Magdalena BLANZ

Trained as an environmental analytical chemist, I am now studying the past using stable isotope ratio and trace element analysis of bioarchaeological remains and present-day analogues. Currently, I am researching the first introductions of domesticated animals beyond their semi-arid ecological homelands in southwest Asia into new environments in Europe with Maria Ivanova-Bieg. For my PhD I focussed on the identification and interpretation of seaweed consumption by terrestrial mammals

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Members

Eve DERENNE

Eve Derenne is an archaeologist working on the recent Prehistory of Europe. Her research focuses on the emergence, diffusion, and local integration processes of large-scale cultural phenomena such as the Bell Beaker complex. To tackle these issues, her approach encompasses ceramic technology, radiocarbon dating, and Bayesian modelling, applied to both micro- and macroscales. Her other research concerns include: megalithic-erecting societies, the Neolithic-Bronze Age transition, and the relationship between domestic and funerary contexts.

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Core Facility for Micro-Computed Tomography (Vienna Micro-CT Lab) Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Gerhard WEBER

Head

  I’m the head of the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology, the Vienna µCT Lab, and the research network “HEAS”. My interest is to get as much information as possible about functional morphology from fossils and osteological material. I contributed especially to the development of Virtual Anthropology and evolutionary research regarding modern humans and Neanderthals. Recently, I’m also concerned with applications in archaeology or orthodontics.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Cinzia FORNAI

I am an evolutionary anthropologist and morphometrician by training, with consolidated experience in Dental Anthropology. Over the course of my PhD program in Biology through the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Vienna (concluded in 2015), I have specialized in the use of virtual image techniques and geometric morphometrics for the exploration of hominin dental variation (http://othes.univie.ac.at/38865/1/2015-07-11_0963308.pdf). My postdoctoral research through the within the Evolutionary Morphology group of the Institute of Evolutionary Medicine, University of Zurich, focused on the evolutionary aspects of human birth and the investigation of the pelvis in hominoids. Currently affiliated with the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology, I continue research in Dental Anthropology, while being the scientific coordinator of the Vienna School of Interdisciplinary Dentistry www.viesid.com, where I focus on topics relevant to oral medicine such as functional morphology of the stomatognathic system and its clinical implications.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Tom HIGHAM

Deputy Head

  I am a Professor of Scientific Archaeology in the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Vienna. Prior to coming to Vienna in August 2021 I was the Director of the University of Oxford’s Radiocarbon Accelerator Unit. My research focuses on developing and improving the radiocarbon method and applying it to the dating of archaeological sites, especially those dating to the Palaeolithic period.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Ron PINHASI

Deputy Head

Dr. Ron Pinhasi  is the Head of the Ancient DNA Lab. His research focuses on human evolution including fieldwork projects on the Middle-Upper Palaeolithic transition in the Caucasus. He held an ERC Starting Grant project (2011-2015) that focused on human genetic history, migrations and admixture, and developed the widely-used ancient DNA optimisation method from the petrous bone.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Pere GELABERT

I am a postdoctoral researcher in Ron Pinhasis's group working with genetic data from different sources. I am primarily interested in analyzing genomic data from past environments or populations that can be co-analyzed together with other disciplines to answer questions linked to cultural evolution and health status assessment of ancient populations. I am currently working on projects related to past microbiomes and populations as well on the analysis of ancient environmental genomic data of human-related environments.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Bernhard FINK

Bernhard Fink received his PhD in Biological Anthropology from the University of Vienna (Austria). He then moved to the University of Göttingen (Germany) where he held prestigious grants from the German Science Foundation (DFG) to investigate the social perception of human facial/body morphology and body movements, such as dance and gait. His work comprises the study of cross-cultural similarities and differences in human social perception, including research in pre-industrialized (small-scale) societies. Bernhard has worked extensively on digit ratio (2D:4D), a supposed proxy for prenatal androgenization. Together with John Manning (Swansea University), he examines 2D:4D relationships with sex-dependent traits across nations in a large sample from the BBC internet study.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Xin HUANG

I am an evolutionary biologist and has been working on method development for solving different problems with population genomic data, including detecting positive selection, estimating strength of natural selection, quantifying time-varying selective pressures, inferring the distribution of fitness effects, and detecting archaic admixture. I will continue to investigate many other interesting topics in the future.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Members

Emily J. KATE

Emily J. Kate is bioarchaeologist specializing in radiocarbon dating, isotopic studies of paleodiet and migration, human osteology and paleodemography, and has worked with projects from Mexico, Belize, Guatemala, and in Europe. Her interests include the manner in which paleodietary variation and changing trends can be used to assess shifts in social structure, political organization, and resilience, the effects of long-distance migration on the social and political landscape of societies, and the refinement of regional chronologies through targeted radiocarbon programs and Bayesian modeling. Emily is currently the Project Coordinator for the ERC funded SUSTAIN project at the Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science and is also an editor for the Cambridge University Press book series, Elements in Ancient and Premodern Economies.

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Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology (IUHA) Members

Tom MALTAS

I am a Postdoctoral Researcher in Environmental Archaeology on the 'Migration and the Making of the Ancient Greek World' (MIGMAG) project at the Institute for Classical Archaeology, University of Vienna. My research uses archaeobotany and stable isotope analysis to understand the roles of farming in societal change in the prehistoric Mediterranean. For MIGMAG, I am investigating changes in land use and agricultural production strategies that may have accompanied mobility, demographic change and urbanisation in the Iron Age Mediterranean. I recently completed a DPhil (PhD) at the University of Oxford, where I analysed archaeobotanical assemblages from Chalcolithic and Bronze Age western Anatolia.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Lumila Paula MENÉNDEZ

I am a biological anthropologist specialized in human evolution and biocultural diversity in the Americas. I was born in Argentina, where I also conducted my studies and most of my training. Currently, I am leading two projects, one funded by the German Foundation for Scientific Research (DFG), aims to study cranial variation in individuals from South America, for evaluating the role of evolutionary and ecological factors during the human diversification across the whole Holocene; and the other, funded by the German Academic Exchange Service (DAAD), points to validate virtual anthropology protocols for contributing in the forensic human identification in Mexico. To tackle these issues, I apply imagining techniques, geometric morphometrics methods, as well as multivariate statistics, and I work interdisciplinary collaborating with archaeologists, geneticists, forensic experts, biologists, linguists, and philosophers of science.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

José-Miguel TEJERO

José-Miguel Tejero is an archaeologist specialising in Upper Palaeolithic hunter-gatherer societies and their osseous raw material exploitation. His current research, funded by the FWF, focuses on bone and antler hunting weapons and their significance in adaptative environmental strategies of the first anatomically modern humans colonising Eurasia by combining archaeological, palaeogenetic, palaeoproteomics, and radiodating methods. His work also involves the bone equipment of the Western-European societies at the late Upper Palaeolithic (Magdalenian) and the last Levantine hunter-gatherer groups, beginning to practice the sedentarism (Natufian). He is the research leader of the interdisciplinary and international team for the study and publication of one of the most critical Near East Natufian sites: Einan–Ain-Mallaha (Jordan Valley, Israel), funded by the Shelby White and Leon Levy Foundation.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Sonja WINDHAGER

Sonja Windhager is a trained biologist and lecturer in Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Vienna. Her research focus is on geometric morphometric approaches to human facial shape and interpersonal perception. This includes an interest in modern imaging techniques to study human facial form in two and three dimensions. The emphasis is on the use of calibrated morphs in intra- and cross-cultural research. Furthermore, she investigates human social behavior in the context of biophilia and the urban environment.

Research Areas:
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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Jeannette BECKER

I am a PhD student at the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology and especially interested in respiratory diseases in past populations, palaeopathology, evolutionary medicine and diseases in regard of the human life history. I received a BSc in Biology in 2017, followed by a MSc in 2021 from the University of Vienna. I completed my master’s degree in Anthropology where I investigated paranasal sinusitis and their relation to skeletal stress markers in human remains. In addition, I am currently studying medicine at the Medical University of Vienna, which I will complete in 2022.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

KS Duffett CARLSON

I am a PhD candidate in Biology (Evolutionary Anthropology). My background is in archaeology and biological anthropology. I am interested in non-destructive scanning methods to study palaeodiet, functional morphology, and taphonomy in ancient samples. I also have extensive experience excavating Palaeolithic sites.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Tobias GÖLLNER

Tobias Göllner investigates the peopling of Asia via genetic ancestry, population structure, demography and selection. Currently he works together with the Maniq, a primary hunter-gatherer community of Southeast Asia to uncover their genetic history, admixture, and archaic introgression. Further topics of investigation will be selection and adaptation to a hunter-gatherer lifestyle in the rainforest. (PhD Supervisors: Martin Fieder and Helmut Schaschl)

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Dominik HAGMANN

Dominik Hagmann is currently working on several projects primarily focusing on Roman archaeology in Austria and is a lecturer at the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (University of Vienna). In Dec. 2021, he submitted his PhD-thesis at the University of Vienna’s Doctoral School for Cultural and Historical Studies on “Roman rural landscapes in Noricum. “ As an archaeologist, Dominik focuses on provincial Roman studies in terms of settlement and landscape archaeology in Austria. He implements state-of-the-art digital and interdisciplinary methods into his research. He participated (partly a field director) in numerous field campaigns in Central and Southern Europe and the Middle East in the course of several third-party-funded international and national research projects.  

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Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology (IUHA) Members

Doris JETZINGER

I am a PhD student working as a University Assistant at the Department of Prehistory and Historical Archaeology. In 2021, I received my master’s degree from the University of Vienna, analysing two block-excavated child burials from the Middle Neolithic Lengyel Culture. Apart from human remains, my main research interests include landscape archaeology and geoarchaeology as well as human-landscape interactions. My PhD project focuses on modelling and reconstructing landscape change, erosion, and preservation conditions of and around Middle Neolithic sites from their construction until the present. I enjoy fieldwork and desktop-based work in equal measures and like to collaborate with colleagues from different (sub-)disciplines, which is a great way for continuously broadening my horizon.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Members

Nisa Iduna KIRCHENGAST

Nisa Kirchengast studied Classical Archaeology, Prehistory and Historical Archaeology, and Biology at the University of Vienna. Since 2017 she has been working freelance on zooarchaeological material in Austria and Italy. Since 2021 she is a PraeDoc assistant and fellow at the Doctoral School of Historical and Cultural Studies at the University of Vienna. Her PhD project is about Roman food supply and distribution systems of animal products in the Danubian provinces. Nisa's research focuses on butchery studies, taphonomy, animal husbandry practices, foodways, Human-Animal interactions, trade and supply networks.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Victoria OBERREITER

I have completed my master’s program in Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Vienna and I am currently a PhD student in Ron Pinhasi’s group. My research is part of the research platform MINERVA (Mineralogical Preservation of the Human Biome) which studies the interactions of ancient DNA (aDNA) with and protection by diverse mineral phases. I am currently specializing in extracting aDNA from archeological sediments with a specific focus on paleolithic cave sites. The obtained metagenomic data allow me to study human population history and occupations even at sites lacking human remains.  

Research Areas: ,
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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Petra ŠIMKOVÁ

I am a PhD student at the Department of Evolutionary Anthropology at the University of Vienna. After finishing my bachelor's studies focused on skeletal morphology and paleopathology at Comenius University in Bratislava, I obtained my Master's degree at the University of Vienna, with the main focus on dental anthropology in combination with 3D imaging and geometric morphometrics. In my PhD research, I continue focusing on dental anthropology and morphology of hominids, working by means of virtual anthropology and geometric morphometrics.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Members

Magdalena T. SRIENC-ŚCIESIEK

I am a PhD candidate and the Anthropology Lab Manager at the Austrian Archaeological Institute- Austrian Academy of Sciences. My doctoral research focuses on the early medieval Eastern Alpine region and will look at how the transitional period influenced health and diet as well as mobility in southern Austria and northern Slovenia. I am interested in palaeopathology and recreating the life history of individuals and communities.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Members

Brina ZAGORC

I am an archaeologist and currently a PhD student in Ron Pinhasi's Lab group. My research areas include studying relationships between and within past societies, and I am especially interested in the field of bioarchaeology of children. The main focus of my PhD project is to observe sex-specific variations in subadult health status during Antiquity and Early Medieval times. My work includes aDNA analysis and other bioarchaeological methods where I compare the occurrence of physiological stress indicators, and other paleopathological indicators of bad health, in relation to the biological sex of the studied individuals. This will help me address questions on upbringing, weaning patterns, and overall health of the subadult population in the past.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Immo TRINKS

Deputy Head

I am a geophysicist interested in innovative research into efficient, high-resolution, geophysical prospection and digital documentation methods and their application to geosciences, archaeology and engineering problems. I am motivated by the potential of new techniques permitting the imaging of subsurface structures in unprecedented resolution, revealing hidden man-made and natural treasures. I enjoy sharing insights, findings and know-how with colleagues, students and the interested public.

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Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology (IUHA) Team Leaders

Michael DONEUS

Management Board

Michael Doneus is professor for landscape archaeology and Head of the Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology of the University of Vienna. He is specialized in archaeological prospection with a focus on methodological development of remote sensing techniques and integrated data interpretation. He was director of the Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (2012-2013) and deputy director of the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological Prospection and Virtual Archaeology (2010-2017).

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Vienna Environmental Research Accelerator (VERA) Team Leaders

Robin GOLSER

Management Board

Robin Golser is head of the Vienna Environmental Research Accelerator (VERA), a dedicated facility for Accelerator Mass Spectrometry (AMS) at the University of Vienna. VERA is used for ultrasensitive radioisotope analysis including radiocarbon dating. Robin’s research interests lie in opening totally new avenues for AMS such as the world-wide unique Ion Laser Interaction Mass Spectrometry system and applications in Astrophysics.

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Department of Environmental Geosciences (EDGE) Team Leaders

Stephan M. KRAEMER

Management Board

Stephan Kraemer is the head of the Department of Environmental Geosciences at the University of Vienna and co-founder of the MINERVA (Mineralogical Preservation of the Human Biome) research platform. He is a low temperature geochemist interested in molecular scale bio-mineral interactions. A particular focus is the reactivity of biogenic molecules including ligands, reductants, enzymes and nucleic acids at mineral surfaces. His research interests include interactions of DNA with mineral phases in the context of long-term eDNA and aDNA preservation. He uses stable isotopes including strontium, mercury and other transition metals as process- and forensic tracers. His laboratory includes a MC-ICPMS isotope lab, trace metal analytics and spectroscopic facilities and methods for mineral characterization. After studying Earth Sciences at Ruhr Universität Bochum, he obtained his PhD in 1997 under the guidance of Prof. Janet Hering (CALTECH) and held positions at UC Berkeley and ETH-Zürich before moving to Vienna in 2006.

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Department of Palaeontology (PAL) Team Leaders

Jürgen KRIWET

Management Board

I am Professor of Palaeobiology and head of the Evolutionary Morphology Research Group at the Department of Palaeontology of the University of Vienna since September 2010. Prior to coming to Vienna I was curator at the Natural History Museum Berlin and State Museum of Natural History Stuttgart (Germany). My research is at the interface of palaeobiology and evolutionary developmental biology of vertebrates. For this I integrate living and fossil organisms, knowledge of their evolutionary relationships and past diversity patterns, and developmental biology, to provide a holistic understanding of their evolutionary history.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Birgit BÜHLER

Birgit Bühler was educated at the University of Vienna, Austria (Pre- & Protohistoric Archaeology: M.A. in 1998, PhD in 2002; Evolutionary Anthropology: MSc in 2020), specializing in Early Medieval Archaeology. Since 2000, she has been employed (part-time) at Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS), focusing on the technology of precious metalwork from prehistory to the Middle Ages.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Katerina DOUKA

I am an archaeological scientist interested in the development and application of analytical tools, in particularly chronometric and biomolecular methodologies, to archaeological and palaeoenvironmental investigations. I specialise in radiocarbon dating, and have extensive experience in sample collection, development of new protocols for decontaminating archaeological material, and the statistical interpretation of AMS results using Bayesian modelling. I am also interested in the application of biomolecular tools, such as collagen peptide fingerprinting (also known as ZooMS), to better understand the archaeological record.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Martin FIEDER

Main research areas: evolutionary demography and behavior genetics. Martin Fieder investigates how our evolutionary heritage influences modern-day demographics, focusing on mating, social status and reproduction, as well as on the demographic causes of contemporary migration flows. In the field of behavioral genetics, he works on genetic predisposition and evolution of in-group vs. out-group attitudes, social status as well as homogamy, with a special attention on the evolution of religions. He mainly uses public demographic data, twin data, Genome Wide Association Studies and the Poly Genic Risk Score.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Irmgard HEIN

Deputy director of VIAS, Egyptologist.  Research interests: Ceramic analysis and material culture.  Late Bronze Age, chronology and cultural interconnections in the Eastern Mediterranean. Development of archaeological methods. Ancient Egyptian Art. Fieldwork in Egypt (Tell el-Daba, Karnak North, and other sites). Principal investigator of the SFB SCIEM 2000, project Cyprus (1999-2011). Guest professor in Uppsala (Sweden) 2010-2013. Currently:  field work in Karnak/Egypt (cooperation IFAO).

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Maria IVANOVA-BIEG

Maria Ivanova-Bieg is an archaeologist and a specialist in European Prehistory. Her current research projects, funded by the ERC (Consolidator Grant), FWF and the Fritz-Thyssen Foundation, deal with key issues in prehistoric archaeology such as the development of novel socio-ecological relationships in early agro-pastoral societies and the rise of social networks of long-distance connectivity in Mediterranean Europe and North Africa.

Research Areas:
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Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology (IUHA) Team Leaders

Alexandra KRENN-LEEB

Since 1995 I have been teaching and researching as an archaeologist (assistant professor) at the Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology at the University of Vienna on the Neolithic Period, Copper and especially the Bronze Age with a focus on social, environmental and landscape archaeological issues. As director of studies, I am responsible for the curricula and all study matters. My main research interests are identity, mobility & tradition of Bronze Age populations, human ecology of the Copper Age, deposits in the context of space and ritual, ritual violence, conflict archaeology.    

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Sylvia KIRCHENGAST

The main research focus is the evolution of human life history patterns, comprising studies concerning growth patterns in recent as well as historical populations, in particular the impact of endogenous und exogenous stress factors on body height and directional asymmetry patterns. On the other hand, female reproductive biology, in particular pregnancy, childbirth and menopause are focused on.

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Department of Evolutionary Anthropology (DEA) Team Leaders

Martin KUHLWILM

Martin Kuhlwilm is a biologist and obtained a PhD working on population genomics of Neandertals at the MPI-EVA in Leipzig. As a postdoctoral researcher in Barcelona, he studied admixture in great apes. Currently, he is an Assistant Professor at the University of Vienna, with funding from the WWTF. His research involves computational approaches to study population history, particularly admixture between populations.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Günther Karl KUNST

Trained as a palaeontologist working on Ice-Age mammals, I made a change for the “younger stuff” with the founding of VIAS/IDEA in 1994. Since then, I have been involved in various excavation projects in Central Europe, Egypt and Turkey. I prefer excavation projects comprising  complicated archaeological situations, like multiphase buildings or settlements. Here, I like to collaborate with colleagues studying archaeological features and other find groups, especially pottery. I have been a lecturer for archaeozoology for almost three decades on various departments of the University of Vienna (Prehistory and Historic archaeology, Palaeontology, Anthropology). Special interests: taphonomy of buildings and complex settlements; butchery studies; relationships between animal bones and pottery remains

Research Areas:
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Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology (IUHA) Team Leaders

Naoíse MAC SWEENEY

My research focuses on the ancient Greek world and Anatolia, and I am particularly interested in questions concerning migration, mobility, and cultural interaction. My current project (https://www.migmag-erc.eu/) investigates how multi-scalar mobilities contributed to the formation of ancient Greek communities first millennium BCE, comparing narrative of migration with evidence from landscape survey for population circulation and regional mobilities. I am also very interested in the comparison of real and imagined genealogies. Since 2020 I have been a Professor of Classical Archaeology (Greek) at the University of Vienna.

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Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS) Team Leaders

Mathias MEHOFER

Since the year 2000 I have been head of the archaeometallurgical laboratory at the Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science/University Vienna.My research focus lies on the: Bronze Age Archaeology, Iron Age Archaeology, Medieval Ages, Experimental Archaeology, Mining Archaeology, metallurgy of copper, bronze and precious metals, metallurgy of iron, tool mark analyses, use wear analyses on bronze objects, analyses with the scanning electron microscope (SEM-EDS)

Research Areas:
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