Session: #178

Theme & Session Format

Digital archaeology, science and multidisciplinarity: new methods, new challenges
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

Macro Weather – Micro Climate: Local Palaeo-Climate Reconstructions and Social Responses at a Human Scale
Climate fluctuations and the resulting environmental conditions at both local and global levels are frequently interpreted as forces driving or at least influencing prehistoric societal dynamics.
Consequently has the study of human-environment interactions been described as one of the major challenges in archaeology (Kintigh et al. 2014) and possible relations between climate and subsistence have been the subject of several recent projects.
Many of these studies relate on global climate proxies such as the GISP 2 ice cores or total solar irradiance. However, proxies for local climate fluctuations have rarely been identified and tested for their possible relevance for human subsistence or societies. Furthermore, it remains uncertain as to how environmental changes documented in supraregional or even global proxies may have actually affected local environments. The fact that these scale-related problems have often been neglected is certainly a result of the difficulties in finding reliable and high-resolution climate indicators which may be linked with the archaeological record.
In this session, we will examine new and robust methodologies and the re-analysis of old data from new angles. We invite speakers to demonstrate approaches that take a local perspective and explore medium-range social developments in conjunction with local climate archives to investigate their possible interrelationships.
human-environmental interactions, archaeology, paleoclimatology, proxy development
Session associated with MERC:
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Main organiser:
Martin Hinz (Switzerland) 1
Niels Bleicher (Switzerland) 2
Detlef Gronenborn (Germany) 3
1. Institute for Archaeological Sciences, University Bern, Switzerland
2. Office for Urbanism Zürich, Underwater Archaeology and Laboratory for Dendrochronology, Zürich, Switzerland
3. Römisch-Germanisches Zentralmuseum, Leibniz Research Institute for Archaeology, Mainz, Germany