UPA - Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie

The series was founded by originally five university institutes in Germany and is intended to give younger scientists and exam candidates a chance to publish their research and theses under favorable conditions. The research published in the series covers the entire period from the Paleolithic to Modern Times. The publishers of the series now come from 19 cities in five European countries. The authors and the corresponding departments at the institutes are responsible for the sentence and change, as well as the delivery of print-ready PDFs. The financing of the printing will be done either by the authors, the participating institutes or the publishing house Dr. Ing. Rudolf Habelt GmbH, who at the same time ensures sales (leaflet for authors).

In the meantime, our institute publishes two sub-series within the framework of the UPA, which optically contrast with the original UPA series due to a different cover design. These are the series "Neolithic and Chalcolithic in Central Bosnia", in which current research results from the Okolište project are published, but also the International Workshops of the Kiel Graduate School "Human Development in Landscapes" appeared in a sub-series of the UPA.

List of UPA volumes from the Institute until 2017 (pdf)
List of  UPA volumes from the GS Human Development in Landscapes until 2017 (pdf)


Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 329

Artefakt-Netzwerke im östlichen Mitteleuropa an der Schwelle zum hohen Mittelalter
Donat Wehner

Zur Quantifizierung, Visualisierung und Beschaffenheit überregionaler Kommunikations- und Austauschbeziehungen


[Artefact networks in eastern Central Europe on the threshold to the high Middle Ages.]
by Donat Wehner
[To quantify, visualize and characterize supra-regional communication and exchange relationships.]



Bonn, Habelt 2019

Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 323 (Human Development in Landscapes 15)

Landscape distribution of talaiotic monuments as markers of social space
Maria Gelabert Oliver

Centred in the largest island of the Balearic archipelago, Mallorca, during the Talaiotic period (between ca. 850 and 550 BCE), a research aiming at determining the organization of the social space is presented. The principal source of information is the most emblematic and well defined chronologically material evidence of this time frame: the tower-like talaiotic monuments. These buildings are the basic structural unit of talaiotic settlements around which the daily life of the community was developed. Viewing talaiots as an expression of social activity, their architectonic characteristics were investigated and the work investment in their construction was quantified. This type of estimate allowed for a territorial mapping of the social work associated with each structure. The intensity distribution of social activity was correlated with geographical, environmental, and archaeological variables. This research line permitted to obtain a better insight into settlement pattern, demographic aspects, socio-economic and political relationships among settlements, and the role played by monumentality during the Talaiotic period.

Bonn 2018
ISBN: 978-3-7749-4190-8

Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 322

Die wikingerzeitliche Siedlung von Kosel-Ost (LA 198)

Ein ländlicher Fundplatz im Kontext der altdänischen Siedlungslandschaft des 10. Jahrhunderts

Tobias Schade


Bonn, Habelt 2018
ISBN 978-3-7749-4087-1

Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 318 (Human Development in Landscapes 14)

Archaeology and the Historical Understanding
Artur Ribeiro

In archaeology, it is commonly assumed that past societies can be understood through general principles, which dictate how all social life develops, or through historical particularism, which dictates that societies develop in their own specific way. It is also assumed that these two ways of perceiving past societies are mutually exclusive.
Due to these incorrect assumptions, it is often believed that case-studies (particular) can be offered in support of a theory (general) when in truth, both these elements are actually scientifically distinct. These assumptions have caused a further misunderstanding: it is believed that narratives, which describe particular histories, cannot be considered scientifically reliable since they cannot authentically represent a general explanatory principle. Narratives remain, to this day, commonly misperceived as purely descriptive. Thus, in order to correct this problem, it is necessary to recognize that generalization is based on the quantitative principle that similar causes will (probably or necessarily) produce similar effects, whereas historical particularism is not based on particular causes or effects at all, rather, historical particularism is based on the qualitative principle that human behaviour can only be understood (Verstehen) through specific social contexts.

This book analyses in detail the connection between historical explanations and social contexts and what this ultimately means to archaeology. It provides a case-study of how Bronze Age societies developed in Southern Portugal and case-study on how Persian religious rituals became magical rituals in Iberia during the first centuries AD. Finally, the book explains how it is possible for archaeology to embrace both science and history without incurring in contradiction. 

Bonn 2018
ISBN 978-3-7749-4168-7

Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 312 (Human Development in Landscapes 12)

Environmental history and development of the human landscape in a northeastern Italian lowland during the Bronze Age: a multidisciplinary case-study
Marta Dal Corso

Natural resources such as wood for timber, land for cultivation and pastures, and water for irrigation and transport had primary importance in the economy of the first sedentary agricultural societies. To trace changes in such key resources can help in the identification (or exclusion) of triggers for cultural and social development. What happens when human impact forces the limits of renewability? Were prehistoric societies flexible enough to react to unexpected environmental stress? This volume provides new data for understanding the environmental conditions in northeastern Italy at the time of the collapse of the Terramare Culture during the Recent and the Final Bronze Age (14th –11th century BC). This culture occupied the floodplain with a dense settlement system and developed a rich network of contacts. To investigate the dynamics behind its abrupt abandonment, an interdisciplinary research project was developed, which investigated one of the rare areas of resilience corresponding with the archaeological site of Fondo Paviani (Legnago, Verona). The study of plant micro-remains (pollen, NPPs, phytoliths) from sedimentary archives enable the reconstruction of the vegetation history and plant use around the site. Among the highlights of this research, the spread of cultivated land, woodland loss, and a temporary period of drought correspond to external causes enhancing the crisis. Together with demographic pressure, those factors contributed to the general collapse of the system, except at Fondo Paviani, where cultural factors, such as the emergence of social complexity, most likely helped the society to cope with environmental limits. To get a broader view on the vegetation history of the region, in addition a sediment core in the lake basin of Castellaro Lagusello (Monzambano, Mantova) has been investigated for pollen and NPPs. This record depicts the vegetation of the alpine foothills south of Garda Lake and offers insight into woodland composition and changes in the Mid- and Late Holocene.

Bonn, Habelt 2018
- eBook available -
ISBN 978-3-7749-4151-9


Universitätsforschungen zur. prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 308 (Human Development in Landscapes 11)

Rebellion and Inequality in Archaeology. Proceedings of the Kiel Workshops
„Archaeology of Rebellion“ (2014) and „Social Inequality as a Topic in Archaeology“ (2015). 
Svend Hansen, Johannes Müller

Social inequality – but in particular also social resistance against corresponding social hierarchies – occupies a prominent position in almost all current societies. In order to continue to advance in the tradition of addressing necessary discourses on these topics in archaeology, a workshop and a conference were held in Kiel in 2014 and 2015, specifically: “The Archaeology of Rebellion” and “Social Inequality as a Topic in Archaeology”. The topic of social resistance was discussed for the first time in Europe for prehistoric and protohistoric societies. As a result, it could be clearly determined that the identification of social conflicts and social resistance is successful for many archaeological case studies. Accordingly, the interpretation of numerous archaeological contexts must be seen in a new light.

Bonn, Habelt 2017
ISBN 978-3-7749-4132-8


Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 304

Das ägäische Neolithikum und Chalkolithikum. Transformationen sozialer Handlungsmuster in Anatolien und Griechenland zwischen 6500 und 4000 v.Chr.
Martin Furholt 

Among the most momentous developments that have connected West Anatolia and Greece over the Aegean in the course of human history have to be mentioned the processes simplified by the term "Neolithization". This work deals diachronically with the different social developments that are related to this term. The basis is a comprehensive coverage and statistical evaluation of the available and quantifiable archaeological material of 7.-4. Millennium BC In western Turkey and Greece. Based on an action theory perspective, the change and dynamics of action contexts, interaction spaces, Aegean social networks, subsistence strategies, economic structures and the composition of social communities are examined at the local and regional scale. These different levels of social action spaces, the author finally brings together to the 6600 v. Chr. To better understand the expansion of Neolithic life forms to Europe, which began in about the third century BC, and to classify the subsequent supraregional social processes.

Bonn, Habelt 2017
- eBook available -
ISBN 978-3-7749-4101-4


Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie Bd. 303 (Human Development in Landscapes 10)

Long-Term Social Development on a Mediterranean Island. Menorca between 1600 BCE and 1900 CE.
Monica De Cet

This book illustrates the research design and the final results of the PhD project “Long-term Social Development on a Mediterranean Island: Menorca between 1600 BCE and 1900 CE”, begun in April 2010 within the framework of the Graduate School “Human Development in Landscapes” in Kiel. The major aim of this project was to create a model of long-term demographic and territorial processes for prehistoric Menorca beginning at ca. 1600 cal BCE and extending to the 19th century CE. In particular, the interaction between past communities and territory on Menorca (Balearic Islands, Spain) over the last 3500 years was analysed through a multidisciplinary approach based on landscape archaeology, landscape geography and stable isotopes analyses. This Mediterranean island symbolises an extraordinary territorial laboratory, characterized by a large array of archaeological, ecological, historical, and ethnographic data.
The contents of this investigation concern the reconstruction of settlement patterns, location preferences, and occupation dynamics of past inhabitants of the Menorcan territory. Moreover, the features of the subsistence pattern and the palaeo-agrarian trajectory of dry-land farming were delineated. A further focus of the analysis investigated the impact of demography and the processes that allowed humans to carry out the appropriation of natural resources. The major results highlight an interesting long-term social development, where communities appear to be inclined to combine their socio-economic sphere with sustainable intentions. This research represents a methodological approach of eco-historical significance within a Mediterranean socio-natural context from which environmental policymaking can profit.

Bonn, Habelt 2017
- eBook available -
ISBN 978-3-7749-4113-7