I am an archaeologist and philologist specialising in the Bronze Age Middle East (c. 3000-1200 BCE). I take a particular interest in comparative, data-driven approaches to the study of economic structure and landscape history, aided by a rare, interdisciplinary background encompassing core skills in the handling of primary textual and material evidence, landscape archaeology, and digital and spatial humanities research designs.
Keywords: political economy economic history digital humanities archaeology landscape spatial humanities assyriology middle east geographical information systems
I received my BA (2009) and MA (2012) in Assyriology from the Department of Cross-Cultural and Regional Studies of the University of Copenhagen. I subsequently took up doctoral research with the Department of Archaeology of the University of Durham, generously supported by a Durham Doctoral Scholarship (2012-2015) from the Faculty of Social Sciences and Health. My work at Durham, conducted as part of the AHRC-funded Fragile Crescent Project, aimed at integrating textual and archaeological data in order to gauge the relative and absolute scale of political economies of Middle Bronze Age Northern Mesopotamia through a detailed study of cuneiform assemblages and archaeological survey indices from six specific locales.
Having received my PhD in Archaeology (2017), I spent a year in Berlin before obtaining a research position with the ERC-funded Persia and Its Neighbours-project of the University of Durham in January 2018. Here, I worked with remote sensing of upland sites in northeast Iran. I came to Uppsala in June 2018 as a researcher with the project Memories for Life: Materiality and Memory of Ancient Near Eastern Inscribed Private Objects based at the Department of Linguistics and Philology and funded by the Swedish Research Council.
As of January 2020, I am the Co-PI (with Jakob Andersson as PI) of a three-year research project entitled Geomapping Landscapes of Writing (GLoW), aimed at developing a global index and assessment of the scale, composition and distribution of the more than 500,000 cuneiform texts currently known. This project is generously sponsored by a grant from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond Mixed Methods programme. Concurrently, I am the network coordinator of TextWorlds: Global Mapping of Texts from the Pre-Modern World, a two-year (2020-2021) network initiative involving researchers at the Department of Linguistics and Philology, the Department of Scandinavian Languages, the Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, and the Department of Archives, Libraries, and Museums.
I am also an experienced field archaeologist, having participated in archaeological excavations in Jordan and Syria regularly since 2007. As a long-time instructor, and ultimately assistant director of the Islamic Jarash Project of the University of Copenhagen, I have written or co-authored multiple articles on the history and archaeology of northwest Jordan during the Late Antique and Early Islamic ages. I have furthermore served as the assistant director of the Late Antique Jarash Project, also of the University of Copenhagen, directed by Louise Blanke. More recently, I have been engaged in fieldwork in western Iran jointly conducted by Razi University Kermanshah and the University of Copenhagen.
Trained both as a philologist and an archaeologist, my research traverses the interface between the written word and material culture, drawing also on prolonged engagements with a variety of digital tools for data integration and analysis. I take a particular interest in broader, comparative research designs utilising digital applications to move beyond traditional analogue approaches to archaeological and textual data. Currently, my key responsibilities includes the overall supervision of data collection and integration within Geomapping Landscapes of Writing, and undertaking analyses of broader patterns in the distribution and use of writing in the cuneiform world. As a network coordinator, another area of work is the integration and assembly of data from around the world to develop shared approaches to writing in the ancient world, and a broader understanding of the place that writing has held in ancient societies. On the side, I remain engaged with publications on various archaeological field projects that I have been involved with in Jordan, Iraq, and Iran.
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