Land use, social transformations and woodland in Central European Prehistory. Modelling approaches to human-environment interactions

Project identification code: 19-20970Y

Funding: Grant Agency of the Czech Republic

Principal investigator: Institute of Botany CAS (Mgr. Jan Kolář, Ph. D.)

Time-frame: 2019-2021

Project description:

The proposed project focuses on the interactions between prehistoric societies and the environment in Central Europe. The main questions tackle prehistoric land use, population dynamics, social transformations and woodland. We will use archaeological and palaeoecological datasets to create and compare land use and land cover models for the area of the Czech Republic. The project examines four timeslices with significant social transformations with potentially important impact on landscapes – 5500 BCE (introduction of farming and animal husbandry), 4000 BCE (significant decrease in archaeological evidence), 2500 BCE (start of increase of archaeological evidence followed by beginning of the Bronze Age), 1000 BCE (Late Bronze Age with highest amounts of archaeological evidence in prehistory). The anticipated results will shed new light on Holocene land use and land cover changes in Central Europe, the role of human agency in the spread of specific tree taxa, as well as on the legacy of the past land use and settlement dynamics in different regions of the Czech Republic.

Research team at the Institute of Botany CAS :

Jan Kolář
Peter Tkáč
Vojtěch Abraham
Martin Macek