Session: #233

Theme & Session Format

1. Widening horizons through human-environment interconnections
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

In Search of the Urban Habitat: Exploring the Connection between Towns and Their Environment in Time and Space [Urban Archaeology]
The town and the environment are closely connected. A determining factor within the environment is the landscape, but other aspects can also play an important role like climate, natural resources, stars and cardinal points. It is this environment which determines the location of towns – and not only the location, but also spatial orientation, form and layout, infrastructure, buildings. Even the reasons for their existence, and the way towns functioned and developed can’t be understood without the environment. In this main session of the EAA Urban Archaeology Community we would like to investigate this relationship more closely.

The relationship between towns and their environment can be explored on four different levels:
- The location of towns;
- The layout of towns;
- The type of buildings and structures within towns and how they are constructed;
- The way towns function in relation to its surroundings.
The main questions for this session are how these levels are manifested and more important why and when, as towns are not static entities and are continuously changing. The next main question is whether the interaction with the environment is a local or supra-local phenomenon. Are interconnections between towns, regions and periods recognisable and how do they manifest?
In this session we will explicitly not focus on one specific period and region. Exploring the diversity throughout time and space can help us develop a better understanding of underlying patterns and interconnections. This will also be the focus in the discussion slots of this session.

We welcome contributions from across Europe and outside Europe which addresses one or more of these themes.
urban archaeology, landscape, environment, location, buildings, urban form
Session associated with MERC:
Session associated with CIfA:
Session associated with SAfA:
Session associated with CAA:
Session associated with DGUF:
Session associated with other:
EAA Urban Archaeology Community


Main organiser:
Jeroen Bouwmeester (Netherlands) 1
Nicholas Balbi (Argentina) 2
Paul Belford (United Kingdom) 3
1. Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands
2. Colchester Archaeological Group
3. Clwyd-Powys Archaeological Trust