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Welcome to the Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies - one of the leading research areas at Stockholm University.

The Department consists of seven units: Archaeology, Archaeological Research Laboratory, Osteoarchaeological Research Laboratory, Stockholm Numismatic Institute, Classical Archaeology and Ancient History, Centre for the Study of Cultural Evolution and Centre of Palaeogenetics.

The department has an unique profile with its specializations in three different laboratories and the Numismatic Institute. As a PhD student you have opportunities not found else where in Sweden or Scandinavia.

Excavation at Birka. Photo: Roland Fredriksson/Stockholms universitet.

On the following pages you will find information usefull as a new student at Stockholm University and The Department och Archaeology and Classical studies.

Check out our course: The Viking Age in Northern Europe and along the Eastern Routes


Archaeological Research Laboratory

Archaeological science is a discipline in which scientific techniques are closely integrated with traditional methods and contemporary archaeological theory, resulting in an interdisciplinary approach to the solving of archaeological problems that crosses not only disciplinary boundaries but also the boundaries between faculties.

Någon arbetar med prover i ett laboratorie. Photo: Niklas Björling/Stockholms universitet.
Photo: Niklas Björling/Stockholms universitet.

The laboratory is unique in Scandinavia by virtue of its wide focus, including biological, chemical, physical and geological analytical methods applied to the archaeological records from any chronological period or geographical region. Svealand in the Vendel and Viking Periods, Forts and Fortifications in the Mälaren Region AD 400–1100, Gender and Diet during the Neolithic and research into Late Iron Age food culture are among the major research programmes coordinated by the laboratory during the past decade.

The work of the Archaeological Research Laboratory, particularly in the field of ancient biomolecules, was crucial for the naming of archaeology as one of the 14 leading research areas within the special competence profile of Stockholm University.

The Centre for Palaeogenetics (CPG) is a joint venture between Stockholm University and the Swedish Museum of Natural History. The overall objective of the centre is to bring researchers from different disciplines, such as biology, archaeology and geology, together into a state-of-the-art research environment dedicated to ancient DNA analyses.

Laboratory at the Centre for Paleogenetics. Foto: Jens Olof Lasthein/Stockholms universitet.
Photo: Jens Olof Lasthein/Stockholms universitet.

One of the centre's project is on human archaeogenomics which is a broad theme where genetics is applied on prehistoric human remains to answer archaeological questions. The questions span from demographic development to kinship in contexts such as cemeteries and multiple burials, phenotypes, and chronologically deeper evolutionary topics.

Another example is exploring the microbiome composition in sediments and ancient remains from both humans and wild animals by mining shotgun-sequenced DNA data. The aim is to examine how microbiomes have changed through time and to trace the spread of ancient pathogens.


Osteoarchaeological Research Laboratory

Osteoarchaeology is one of the special profile disciplines at the department, where students receive specialized training in the handling of skeletal archaeological finds. Teaching at the laboratory is broad-based and encompasses both human and animal osteology.

The discipline lies on the borderland between science and the arts, since osteological data form the basis for interpretations of cultural history. Both basic research and more specialized research is conducted at the laboratory, concerning topics such as human living conditions and the subsistence economy during the Stone Age, Iron Age and Medieval Period (animal husbandry, fishing, hunting) and the faunal history of Scandinavia. Newer areas of research include paleopathology in animals, palaeohistopathology and oral histopathology.


Stockholm Numismatic Institute

The Gunnar Ekström chair in numismatics and monetary history

Stockholm Numismatic Institute (NFG) is a part of the Archaeological Research Laboratory at the Department of Archaeology and Classical Studies. It is financed by the Gunnar Ekströms Foundation for Numismatic Research.

The education is part of the education in archaeology. Seminar papers and doctoral students are supervised.

Numismatics is the science of coins and other means of payments etc. The aim of NFG is to set the coins into a wider context - economically, politically, administratively and socially.




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