Postdoctoral Fellowship in Late Prehistoric Archaeology

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    Université de Bordeaux / University of Bordeaux
    First Stage Researcher (R1)
    Recognised Researcher (R2)
    30/01/2022 01:00 - Europe/London
    France › Talence


The GPR ‘Human Past’: our group and our research / Le GPR “Human Past”: notre groupe et notre recherche

The GPR (Grand Programme de Recherche) ‘Human Past’ is an interdisciplinary research project supported by the University of Bordeaux's Initiative d’Excellence. ‘Human Past’ gathers ~110 researchers from 3 laboratories (PACEA, AUSONIUS, and Archéosciences Bordeaux) affiliated with the University of Bordeaux (UB) and the University of Bordeaux Montaigne (UBM). Our expertise combines Biological Anthropology, Classical and Medieval Archaeology, Prehistory, Protohistory, History, Epigraphy, Archaeometry, Geochronology and Computer Science Applications to Cultural Heritage.

’Human Past’ aims to document, characterize and understand the tipping points that have induced major biological and cultural changes within past human populations. Spanning a large chronological period (from Prehistory to historical times), our research aims to identify the steps that enabled a primate originally adapted to African ecosystems to evolve into a species that occupies and impacts every ecosystem on the planet. Biological and social systems will be scrutinized at different scales from a multitude of perspectives with particular attention paid to phenotypic and genetic variability, cognition, technology, social organization, belief systems, and genetic and cultural adaptive strategies that drive human societies.

This position advertisement belongs to the first part of the funding scheme, planned for 4 years.

Project description / Description du projet

This project will focus on the emergence of productive economies (the ‘Neolithic’ way of life), which occurred fairly late in the Caucasus (ca. 6000 BCE) when compared with similar developments attested in the nearby Fertile Crescent (9th millennium BCE). Through the determination of obsidian provenance, this postdoctoral project aims to examine the evolution of interregional dynamics in South-western Asia between the Mesolithic and the Bronze Age. This task requires mapping the changes in obsidian sourcing strategies from the Caucasus to Western Iran and Mesopotamia during the 8000-3000 BCE time span.

The candidate is expected to:

  • Conduct provenance analyses on selected obsidian assemblages
  • Study the relevant assemblages from a typo-technological perspective
  • Reconstruct the chaînes opératoires, from the acquisition of the raw material to the discard of objects
  • Draw conclusions on obsidian procurement, circulation, and consumption patterns and their evolution through time
  • Attempt to identify the potential economic, social, or cultural factors influencing changes in these patterns over time


Adequacy of the postdoctoral project with the objectives of the GRP / Adéquation du projet post-doctoral avec les objectifs du GPR

This project should make it possible to delve deeper into the motivations behind human mobility in South-western Asia, as well as into the role of mobility in the diffusion of technological innovations and cultural change, thus responding directly to one of the key endeavours of the ‘Human Past’ research program. Another key aspect will be to pursue a high-resolution overview of the acquisition modes of obsidian by studying its availability and exploitation by prehistoric and protohistoric communities at the local scale, focusing on the secondary deposits (products of the degradation of the primary sources, generally available at lower altitude).

More Information

Selection process

The candidate will submit their application, consisting of a letter of motivation (2 pages max.) and a CV (including list of publications, if applicable), to the supervisors mentioned in the job description, and to Adrien Pourtier (adrien.pourtier@u-bordeaux.fr), Francesco D'Errico (francesco.derrico@u-bordeaux.fr) and Adeline Le Cabec (adeline.le-cabec@u-bordeaux.fr), before January 30, 2022.

Offer Requirements


The candidate must:

- have held a PhD for less than 8 years.

- be experienced in obsidian sourcing (geochemistry) and lithic technology.

- have a demonstrated experience in the preparation and submission of articles in English.

Work location(s)
1 position(s) available at
Université de Bordeaux / University of Bordeaux
351 cours de la Libération

EURAXESS offer ID: 727887


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