Applications are invited for a PhD candidate in the area of multi-proxy archaeobotany. This position is embedded in the NWO-funded project “Finding Suitable Grounds”, which is due to start in October 2021 in collaboration with Utrecht University (UU), the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF) in Barcelona and several archaeological companies. The project’s consortium brings together experts in geoarchaeology, geology and archaeobotany to study the introduction of crop cultivation in the low-lying areas of the Netherlands, with a special focus on buried and submerged levees of river systems and creeks. The selected PhD candidate will investigate human subsistence-related changes in the vegetation of the Rhine-Meuse Delta and the Swifterbant/IJsselmeer regions in the period 6000 – 4000 BCE. Focus will be on evidence for the introduction of crop plants (esp. cereals) and the development of vegetation associated with anthropogenic activities within a landscape, including arable farming, but also vegetation management – e.g. by burning – for grazing. The candidate will work closely with a PhD candidate in geoarchaeology/soil micromorphology at UU, whose focus is on reconstructing the physical landscape and evidence for soil cultivation in the same areas. Both PhDs will work on buried soils, potentially cultivated horizons, and well-dated sediments in sediment cores from the two research areas. The candidate will work with specialists in pollen, plant macro-remain, microcharcoal and phytolith analyses; the project includes a research internship at the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (Barcelona) for training and support on phytolith analysis.
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[Website University of Groningen]