Submitted: 26 July 2023
Department: Anthropology
Institution: Appalachian State University
Job type: Postdoc
Apply by: 15 August 2023
Application email: [email protected]
Application URL:

The Postdoctoral Fellow will work directly with Jennifer French at the University of Liverpool (UK) and Marc Kissel at Appalachian State University (USA), as well as interact with the larger group of researchers in the multinational research project: Concepts in Dynamic Assemblages: Cultural Evolution and the Human Way of Being, led by Prof. Agustin Fuentes at Princeton University and Greg Downey at Macquarie University. For more information on this project see

The Concepts in Dynamic Assemblages: Cultural Evolution and the Human Way of Being project develops a biocultural, cognitive framework with a focus on the areas of skill, technology, and social life that connects theory and methods in cultural evolution with anthropological theory, cognitive approaches, and ethnographic research. The goal is to better understand cultural processes and how particular patterns of the development and embodiment of ‘concepts’ structure human capacities and transform evolutionary dynamics. This postdoctoral research associate at ASU will focus on work package 3 (led by Drs. Kissel and French) of this wider grant, one which explores the emergence of the concept “technology” and how it shaped, and is continuing to shape human cultural evolution.

This postdoctoral project will use the frame of Concepts in collaboration with the PIs and student research team, working on developing a methodology to allow us to imbed technological ‘concepts’ within the larger research program, and to examine if and how relevant concepts can be inferred from early manifestations of technology in the archaeological record.

The ideal candidate would:

● Have a PhD in Anthropology, Archaeology, or other relevant discipline by August 1st, 2023. ● Have expertise in the study of prehistory technology and/or material culture. Some preference might be given to candidates with hands-on experience in the analysis of either lithic and/or organic technology. ● Have period-specific expertise in the Palaeolithic (with open regional expertise) ● Be interested in wider theoretical discussions and applications of the role of technology in the human niche ● Be willing to both work as part of a wider project, and, to work independently ● Be willing to travel, both nationally and internationally, for project meetings, workshops, and primary research purposes

In return, we offer the successful candidate:

● The opportunity (along with Drs Kissel and French) to play a pivotal role in determining the direction and coordination of the work package, including flexibility to accommodate personal research interests within the broader remit of the work package ● A generous research allowance, as part of the wider work package, to facilitate data collection and research dissemination ● The opportunity to work as part of a wider international transdisciplinary team of scholars ● Co-authorship opportunities and support to publish high-impact work resulting from the project

All applicants should send a cover letter summarizing their research experience and career goals and also include a full cv, names and contact information for three references, and a one-page research statement.

If you have any queries or questions about the role, please contact Dr Marc Kissel ([email protected])

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