Dylan Gaffney

Research Interests

The tropical Asia-Pacific region is host to critical ecologies such as lowland rainforests, small islands, and highland zones, presently at the forefront of globally existential risks and challenges. The deep human history of adaptation and environmental transformation in these spaces is very poorly resolved; however, this information is critical for understanding long-term biotic interactions, the emergence of anthropic ecologies, and indigenous practices of landscape management. The DPhil student will become part of an interdisciplinary research cluster undertaking cutting edge archaeological and palaeoecological research in these areas. They will develop an innovative project that could cover a wide range of topics relating to the deep past of the tropical Asia-Pacific region and/or global Pleistocene archaeology. The project might involve exploratory archaeological survey and excavation; the development and application of novel zooarchaeological methods to the study of past human–animal interactions; multi-proxy palaeoenvironmental reconstructions of vegetational and faunal change; technological and geochemical examinations of lithic or ceramic artefacts to examine mobility and exchange patterns; ethnographic studies of present-day material culture or subsistence practices and comparison with archaeological datasets; and cross comparative analysis of colonisation and settlement processes.


Qualifications and Experience

PhD in Archaeology, University of Cambridge; 2 years post-doctoral experience, 2 years cultural heritage management experience

Personal Research Keywords

human-environment interactions; tropical foragers; migration; archaeological excavation; zooarchaeology; lithic analysis