National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center (SESYNC)
1 Park Place, Suite 300
Annapolis, MD 21401
Seminar presented by Carrie Hritz, SESYNC Associate Director of Research.
Title: Spying On The Past: Using geospatial technologies and declassified satellite photography to explore human and environment interactions in Ancient Mesopotamia
Abstract: This presentation will showcase the role of archaeology as a bridging discipline and the importance of synthesis in archaeological research. I’ll step the audience through my research demonstrating how integration of spatial datasets from historical and declassified satellite imagery, digital elevation models (DEMs), and past archaeological surveys provides new insights into the nature and remains of past landscape transformations. Using southern Mesopotamia as a case study, this article addresses, both quantitatively and qualitatively, long-held assumptions concerning the nature and relationship of settlement patterns and river channel systems in antiquity. GIS and image analysis are used to fill in gaps in the settlement record and propose a revised location for the Tigris River during most of antiquity with significant implications for resource use and management in the past. I will discuss how synthesis of this data revealed patterns in human behavior and decision making, as well as potential contributions to current and future questions of how humans interact and are shaped and shape the environment for the future.
SESYNC seminars are open to all interested attendees. Join us in Annapolis!
The National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Center, funded through an award to the University of Maryland from the National Science Foundation, is a research center dedicated to accelerating data-driven scientific discovery at the interface of human and ecological systems. Visit us online at www.sesync.org and follow us on Twitter @SESYNC.