The Orkney Islands: Long-Term Human Ecodynamics and Enduring Culture


The Orkney Isles of Scotland, though greatly impacted by environmental shifts, are remarkably resilient and have a 5,000+, long-term occupation sequence. There has been a concerted effort by many researchers to study Orkney’s past in order to help Orkney move forward in the face of current sea-level rise and changing social identities. Current archaeological research is shedding light on land- and sea- scapes of power and monuments of control, social identity through burials & settlement landscapes as well as agricultural, fishing, and subsistence traditions of the past. The Gateway to the Atlantic Project is taking steps to expand research, train university students of all levels, and to bring the past to the local community in the form of community archaeology programs, public outreach, and integrated educational programs. Our research illustrates not only a successful and resilient society in the past, but we hope that our community efforts will create a society of endurance as we move towards the future.

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Cite this Record

The Orkney Islands: Long-Term Human Ecodynamics and Enduring Culture. Ruth Maher, Julie Bond, Stephen Dockrill, Julie Gibson, Jane Downes. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397018)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;