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3D Archaeology at Çatalhöyük

Location: Çatalhöyük , Turkey

July 1, 2013 to August 15, 2013

Application Deadline: 
Sunday, November 4, 2012

Deadline Type: 
Exact date

Flyer: PDF icon 3digging_at_chatal_huyouk_13.pdf

Program Type

Field school

RPA certified



University of California, Merced, and Duke University

Project Director:

Maurizio Forte, University of California, Merced, and Ian Hodder, Stanford University

Project Description

What: UC Merced’s School of Social Sciences, Humanities and Arts (Prof. Maurizio Forte), in collaboration with Stanford University and Duke University, will continue the archaeological fieldwork and digital recording in the archaeological site of Çatalhöyük (, Turkey, in 2012, after the successful seasons 2010-2012. The scope is the three-dimensional reconstruction of all the archaeological phases of excavations during the fieldwork and the 3D data recording of the most important artifacts using Teleimmersive systems, computer vision and 3D laser scanners. 

Where:  The Neolithic site of Çatalhöyük was first discovered in the late 1950s and excavated by James Mellaart between 1961 and 1965. The site rapidly became famous internationally due to the large size and dense occupation of the settlement, as well as the spectacular wall paintings and other art that was uncovered inside the site structures. Since 1993 an international team of archaeologists, led by Dr. Ian Hodder, has been carrying out new excavations and research in order to shed more light on the people that inhabited the site.

The Project: Nowadays fieldwork archaeology is able to produce a major amount of information in comparison with the past thanks to an integrated use of digital technologies. This fact opens new perspectives in the interpretation process but requires also more advanced skills in different domains.

Who: Selected graduate and undergraduate students will join an international team of more than 120 archaeologists, anthropologists, paleo-environmental scientists, CRM experts, students and very distinguished professors of different disciplines.  

When: July - August 2013.

Technologies: All students will take part in the excavations on site. Some students will learn how to use optical scanners, time of flight scanners, photomodelling, DGPS, GIS, remote sensing, stereo systems of visualization and stereo digital cameras.  Other students will focus more on skills in archaeological excavation and in the use of digital in-the-trench recording using tablets linked to visualization and GIS. There will be some flexibility in the allocation of students to these two task sets. The experience of fieldwork at Çatalhöyük is much more than an excavation; it is a unique learning experience with people coming from the entire world.  If interested please contact Prof. Maurizio Forte: by November 4, 2012.  

Costs: all the participants have to support travel expenses, insurance, work permit and lodging.

Period(s) of Occupation: Neolithic

Project size: 
1-24 participants

Minimum Length of Stay for Volunteers: 30 days

Minimum age: 

Experience required: 
to be evaluated by CV. Preference for experienced archaeologists and grad students

Room and Board Arrangements

The dig house and the camping are fully equipped. Meals provided by the local organization.

$35 per day + insurance and work permit

Academic Credit

Number of credits offered: none


Contact Information
MaurizIo Forte
5200, N Lake Rd
Recommended Bibliography: 

Mellaart, Excavations at Çatal Hüyük, fourth preliminary report: 1965. Anatolian Studies, vol. 16, pp. 15-191, 1966

I. Hodder, Çatalhöyük, Anatolian Archaeology, vol. 4, pp. 8-10, 1998

I. Hodder, Getting to the Bottom of Thing: Çatalhöyük 1999, Anatolian Archaeology, vol. 5, pp. 4-7, 1999

I. Hodder, Çatalhöyük, Anatolian Archaeology, vol. 8, pp. 5-7, 2002

I. Hodder, A New Phase of Excavation at Çatalhöyük, Anatolian Archaeology, vol. 9, pp. 9-11, 2003

Mellaart, James (1967). Catal Huyuk: A Neolithic Town in Anatolia. McGraw-Hill. pp. 181.