A-II Spatial Effects of Technological Innovations and Changing Ways of Life

Reinhard Bernbeck, Elke Kaiser, Hermann Parzinger, Susan Pollock, Wolfram Schier


Research Group A-II is concerned with the interdependency of technological and social change and with the dynamics of human-environment interaction. The focus is on investigations of the genesis of spatially-relevant inventions and on those having an impact on spatiality (ceramics production, domestication of animals, early wheel and carriage technologies, draft and herd animals, equestrian nomadism), and on the mechanisms through which such innovations were diffused. In this context, the aim is to determine the extent to which central aspects of spatial and social mobility may be regarded on the one hand as the consequences of specific technological innovations, and on the other as preconditions for the dissemination of innovation. Moreover, the far-reaching impact of technological innovation on demographic, societal, economic, and spatial parameters is investigated in the framework of various projects and at a number of different locations in the Eurasian steppes and in Central Asia. Deployed are both archaeological excavations with the enlistment of natural-scientific procedures from the areas of geophysics, archaeozoology, paleoethnobotany, pedology, and geomorphology, as well as pure laboratory analyses of human and animal teeth and bones for the sake of compiling isotope/chemical data. The theoretical foundations of the discussions of this research group have been and remain in particular the central concepts of innovation, mobility, and knowledge.

Keywords: Innovation • Migration • Cultural Transfer • Neolithization • Mobility • Equestrian Nomadism • Knowledge Transfer • Technological Style


Innovation; Migration; Cultural Transfer; Neolithization; Mobility; Equestrian Nomadism; Knowledge Transfer; Technological Style


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eTopoi. Journal for Ancient Studies (ISSN 2192-2608)