Archaeology and Sustainability—IHOPE

Short Seminar

January 24–27, 2008

In January, SAR hosted a short seminar titled “Archaeology and Sustainability,” organized by Sander van der Leeuw of Arizona State University. The seminar brought together archaeologists and climatologists dedicated to furthering archaeology’s contribution to debates over sustainability. The group discussed two projects: the Integrated History and Future of People on Earth (IHOPE) project, sponsored by UNESCO and the National Center for Atmospheric Research, which is assembling and sharing data concerning the socio-environmental dynamics of a number of past societies, and a second UNESCO-sponsored project to produce a seven-volume collective work on water as an issue in the past and present.

The seminar dedicated a day of discussion to each of the projects and to possible linkages between the two. This was the first time that contributors to the projects had met in person, and the group made tremendous progress in outlining plans for assembling data on the prehistoric American Southwest and the ancient Mayas to serve as case studies for sustainability. 

Sander E. Van Der Leeuw, Chair Director, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Steven Aulenback National Center for Atmospheric Research
Carole L. Crumley Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
Michelle Hegmon Professor, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Kathy Hibbard National Center for Atmospheric Research
Keith W. Kintigh Professor, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Ben A. Nelson Professor, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Margaret Nelson Professor, School of Human Evolution and Social Change, Arizona State University
Vernon L. Scarborough Professor, Department of Anthropology, University of Cincinnati
Joseph A. Tainter Chair, Department of of Sociology, Social Work and Anthropology, Utah State University

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