PhD Position Archaeology of the Limes (1.0 FTE)

Updated: 19 days ago
Deadline: 06 May 2021

We are seeking a candidate for a PhD position in the NWO-funded NWA project 'Constructing the limes: Employing citizen science to understand borders and border systems from the Roman period until today.' C-LIMES is a large multidisciplinary project studying the border of the Roman Empire, and more specifically, the so-called Lower German Limes. The project not only investigates how the border functioned in antiquity, but also examines how the limes has become cultural heritage, influenced our contemporary views on borders, and was mobilized to support collective identities since the early modern period. The project is unique in its kind due to its strong attention for citizen science and close collaboration with societal partners. 

In a series of interconnected work packages, C-LIMES offers a new understanding of the specific dynamics of the Roman limes, not only archaeologically, but also how it has textured contemporary engagements with borders, cross-border movement, and the meeting of cultures. The work package Limes Archaeology analyses how archaeological artefacts can be reconceptualized to understand the functioning of the Roman border as a divider, or connector, and how the limes affected border communities and settlement patterns. For this work package we are looking for a PhD Researcher who will study the impact of the limes on settlement organization, spatial organization of domestic units, and evolving field systems across the borderscape.

The candidate is expected to handle a variety of source material, ranging from archaeological data, excavation reports, epigraphic material, literary sources, as well as select, master and apply the relevant theoretical frameworks to come to an holistic interpretation and reconstruction of the limes borderscape from the first century BCE to the fifth century CE. In addition, the candidate will employ insights from human geography and anthropology to critically evaluate the impact of borders on everyday life and migration patterns. As part of the application procedure, the prospective candidate is requested to submit a research design proposal (max. 1,000 words). The anticipated starting date is 1 September 2021.


Because the project is participatory in nature and operationalizes the principles of open science, the candidate will be expected to actively engage with societal partners, contribute to non-academic deliverables (exhibition and TV documentary), and regularly present findings of the project to the public. The Researcher will be based at the Ancient History and Classical Civilization section at Utrecht University and will be a contributing member of the Utrecht Heritage and Public History Lab.


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