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International Society honours distinguished Cardiff professor

22 May 2014

The Prehistoric Society comes to the Welsh capital this month celebrating the achievements of Cardiff University archaeologist Professor Alasdair Whittle in the field of European prehistory with the prestigious Europa Conference.

Themed on People, place and time in Neolithic and Chalcolithic Europe, bringing together an international cast of distinguished speakers to present the results of the latest cutting-edge research on farming communities, both in Britain, Ireland and on the continent, the 2014 conference takes place on Friday 30 and Saturday 31 May.

Renowned pre-historian Professor Whittle ends the two-day conference by giving the 2014 EUROPA Public Lecture People, place and time in Neolithic Europe.

Alasdair says:  'It is a pleasure to welcome the Society's annual conference once again to Cardiff University and a real honour to be invited to give the EUROPA lecture.

Alasdair will draw on his lifelong work and recent research in the field for the lecture.  'In discussing the implications of fine-scale chronological resolution, made possible by the Bayesian revolution in chronological modelling, for the kinds of narratives we construct for the Neolithic period in Europe, I will try to show how better control of the short term can inform our view of  long-term social change among prehistoric communities' he reveals.

Currently Professor Whittle is joint-lead on a five-year project across Europe, The times of their lives: towards precise narratives of change for the European Neolithic through formal chronological modelling, funded by the European Research Council. He has recently completed other major international projects with colleagues across the UK and Europe,  funded by AHRC and English Heritage, and published as The first farmers of central Europe: diversity in LBK lifeways (Oxbow Books) and Gathering time: dating the early Neolithic enclosures of southern Britain and Ireland (Oxbow Books).

Speakers will also include distinguished academics from universities across the UK: Bristol, Central Lancashire, Leicester, London, Oxford, Reading, Southampton as well as Cardiff, and from across Europe including Berlin and Seville, with titles varying From Surf to Turf: why did fishing fall out of favour in the British Neolithic and Copper Age South Iberia to Revisiting the Late Neolithic in Orkney. Professor Alex Bayliss of English Heritage delivers the keynote lecture Creeping towards (pre)history: two decades of Bayesian chronological modelling in England on the opening day.

The 2014 EUROPA Public Lecture People, place and time in Neolithic Europe takes place on Saturday 31 May at 4.30pm in the Julian Hodge Building. All are welcome.

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