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A unique Neolithic female figurine from Tell Seker al-Aheimar, Northeast Syria (Nishiaki,Y. 2007 Paleorient 33/2.)

The research interests of this laboratory involve the reconstruction of prehistoric cultural histories by studying archaeological specimens, including lithic artifacts and pottery as well as non-artifactual materials such as archaeobotanical and archaeozoological remains. Our main research area comprises western Eurasia, with a particular focus on the Middle East, where we have conducted fieldwork on an almost annual basis. Our research spans a range of different periods, from the Paleolithic and its fossil hominids, to the Neolithic, which saw the emergence of farming and pastoralism, and to the Bronze and Iron Ages, which gave rise to ancient civilizations. Our unique research approach is evident in how the fieldwork is planned and conducted separately for each research subject, and how the recovered materials undergo interdisciplinary analyses. Along with our research, we are also engaged in work that involves cataloguing and exhibiting the vast archaeological collections stored in the University of Tokyo.

Laboratory members consist of post-doctoral researchers, graduate students, and technical staff specializing in West Asian archaeology. Students interested in joining us should be affiliated with the Graduate School of Humanities and Sociology, the University of Tokyo.


01-17, 2022

 “Hacı Elamxanlı Tepe, The Archaeological Investigations of an Early Neolithic Settlement in West Azerbaijan” has been published. (Jan. 14, 2022)

12-15, 2021

A database of the Iwao Kobori Arid Land Research Collection (Part 3), has been uploaded.

08-05, 2021

 “Hunter-Gatherers in Asia: From Prehistory to Present” has been published. (Mar. 31, 2021)

08-05, 2021

 “Göytepe – The Neolithic Excavations in the Middle Kura Valley, Azerbaijan” has been published. (Feb. 11, 2021)

08-05, 2021

A database of the Photographs from the 1956–1957 Season of Japanese Archaeological Investigations in Iraq, has been uploaded.