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The times of their lives: towards precise narratives of change in the European Neolithic through formal chronological modelling

Objective

This proposal offers ground-breaking progress towards the construction of much more precise chronologies for the Neolithic period in Europe, through the complementary expertise of the P-I and Co-I in Neolithic archaeology and Bayesian statistical analysis respectively. The proposed project would provide much more precise timings of key features and trends in the European Neolithic sequence than are currently available, and much more precise estimates of the duration of events and phenomena, principally through the application of formal chronological modelling in a Bayesian statistical framework. From these it would open up fundamental new insights into the tempo of change through the detailed study of selected sites and situations across the span of the European Neolithic, especially in the sixth, fifth and fourth millennia cal BC. At stake is our ability to study the lives of Neolithic people everywhere at the scale of generations and even decades, as opposed to the more usual scale of centuries. The proposed project would develop the types of application of Bayesian chronological modelling currently undertaken and would offer the beginnings of a new kind of European prehistory, and the opportunity to rethink wider archaeological approaches to the study of time.

The legacy of the project would be a series of case studies published in papers in leading journals, two books, and a series of seminars and conference presentations and sessions designed to reinforce best practice for the future.

Call for proposal

ERC-2011-ADG_20110406
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Host institution

CARDIFF UNIVERSITY
Address
Newport Road 30 36
CF24 0DE Cardiff
United Kingdom

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Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Principal investigator
Alasdair Whittle (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Nick Bodycombe (Mr.)
EU contribution
€ 1 021 324

Beneficiaries (2)

CARDIFF UNIVERSITY
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 1 021 324
Address
Newport Road 30 36
CF24 0DE Cardiff

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Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Principal investigator
Alasdair Whittle (Prof.)
Administrative Contact
Nick Bodycombe (Mr.)
HISTORIC BUILDINGS AND MONUMENTS COMMISSION FOR ENGLAND
United Kingdom
EU contribution
€ 1 519 314
Address
1 Waterhouse Square, Holborn 138-142
EC1N2ST London

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Activity type
Public bodies (excluding Research Organisations and Secondary or Higher Education Establishments)
Administrative Contact
Phillip Lane (Mr.)