ACACIA Workshops

ACACIA Workshops

Because of the broad geographic reach and highly interdisciplinary nature of the data considered for the ACACIA project, collaboration with experts in various fields and regions is crucial to the accuracy and lasting impact of the research. On of the ways we are facilitating this contact is through a series of international workshops. The goal of these workshops is to bring together experts in human and environmental change in Africa, and through a series of presentations and discussion stimulate interdisciplinary communication to better understand the current state of knowledge and approaches to addressing the issues of human-environment interaction in Africa.


September 2016 – Lausanne, Switzerland

The Environmental History of Africa Since the Last Ice Age: Climate, Humans, and Biogeochemistry

This collaborative workshop will be held at the University of Lausanne 14-16 September 2016. This 2.5-day workshop will bring together researchers from biogeochemistry to paleoclimatology and from archaeology to ecology, to exchange their latest knowledge and to consider the interpretation of their results in the context of their peers’ perspectives. A series of presentations will be interspersed with ample time for discussion and exchange among the participants. The goal of the workshop is not to produce a single product, but rather to stimulate transdisciplinary thinking and new research collaborations. This interdisciplinary, international workshop was made possible by support from the Fondation Herbette and the Institute of Earth Surface Dynamics of the University of Lausanne, the Swiss National Science Foundation project ACACIA, and the European Research Council project COEVOLVE. Click here to download a workshop program.

June 2016 – Toulouse, France

Prehistoric land use in eastern Africa

A third ACACIA Workshop was held in Toulouse, France on 26 June 2016, ahead of the 23rd Biennial meeting of the Society of Africanist Archaeologists (SAfA). This workshop focused on connecting researchers who focus on land use in eastern Africa, as well as discussing data availability and the possibility of future collaborations.

November 2015 – Les Rasses, Switzerland

Mapping Human Subsistence in West Africa (1000 BC-AD 1500)

A second ACACIA Workshop was held in Switzerland, 2-6 November 2015. This Workshop focused on the mapping in time and space of subsistence and land use throughout our West Africa case study area, from 1000 BC to AD 1500. Partial funding for this workshop was provided by the Swiss National Science Foundation’s International Exploratory Workshop fund. PAGES provided financial support to enable early-career and African researchers to attend; this workshop will supported the aims of the LandCover6k working group. Additional information including a program and contact information can be found on the 2015 workshop page.

June 2014 – London, UK

The environmental transition of the Iron Age in Africa

On 17-19 June 2014, a workshop was held at the Institute of Archaeology, University College London. The workshop was supported by the Swiss National Science Foundation through the grant ACACIA (Jed O. Kaplan, Basil Davis, and Carsten Lemmen PIs) and the UCL Institute of Archaeology’s ComPAg project The workshop also supported the activities of at least three current European Research Council Projects: COEVOLVE /research/coevolve (PI Jed O. Kaplan), ComPAg (PI Dorian Fuller) and SEALINKS (PI Nicole Boivin). A summary of the proceedings and outcomes can be found on the 2014 workshop page.