Marco Madella

Marco Madella
University Pompeu Fabra & IMF-CSIC · CaSEs Research Group (Dept. Humanities)

PhD, University of Cambridge

About

269
Publications
100,523
Reads
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5,576
Citations
Citations since 2016
135 Research Items
3778 Citations
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
20162017201820192020202120220100200300400500
Additional affiliations
July 2014 - present
University Pompeu Fabra
Position
  • ICREA Research Professor
July 2005 - present
Spanish National Research Council
Position
  • ICREA Research Professor
January 2005 - present
University of Cambridge
Education
July 2000
University of Cambridge
Field of study
  • Archaeology
November 1989
University of Milan
Field of study
  • Natural Sciences

Publications

Publications (269)
Article
The interpretation of crop water management practices has been central to the archeological debate on agricultural strategies and is crucial where the type of water strategy can provide fundamental explanations for the adoption and use of specific crops. Traces of water administration are difficult to detect and are mostly indirect, in the form of...
Article
Full-text available
The domestication of plants and the origin of agricultural societies has been the focus of much theoretical discussion on why, how, when, and where these happened. The ‘when’ and ‘where’ have been substantially addressed by different branches of archaeology, thanks to advances in methodology and the broadening of the geographical and chronological...
Article
Full-text available
Human beings are an active component of every terrestrial ecosystem on Earth. Although our local impact on the evolution of these ecosystems has been undeniable and extensively documented, it remains unclear precisely how our activities are altering them, in part because ecosystems are dynamic systems structured by complex, non-linear feedback proc...
Article
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The emergence of Neolithic economies and their spread through Eurasia was one of the most crucial transitions of the Holocene, with different mechanisms of diffusion—demic, cultural—being proposed. While this phenomenon has been exhaustively studied in Europe, with repeated attempts to model the speed of Neolithic diffusion based on radiocarbon dat...
Article
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Considerable confusion and uncertainty persist on the cultural and chronological contexts of Holocene microlithic assemblages reported from South Asia. The paucity of securely dated sites with microlithic remains has compounded the confusion. Evidence from sites securely attributed to the Mesolithic based on a holistic approach (including direct ev...
Article
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Drylands cover more than 40% of the earth’s land surface, are found on all continents, and are home to 30% of the world’s population. Due to water scarcity, they are generally considered unsuitable for lasting human settlement. While pastoralism has been reconceptualized recently as a rational, efficient, and sustainable way to live in drylands, ag...
Article
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Biosilica accumulation in plant tissues is related to the transpiration stream, which in turn depends on water availability. Nevertheless, the debate on whether genetically and environmentally controlled mechanisms of biosilica deposition are directly connected to water availability is still open. We aim at clarifying the system which leads to the...
Preprint
Modern plant tissues are often processed for phytolith analysis. They represent a fundamental source of comparison for archeological and palaeoenvironmental phytolith assemblages; they efficiently serve for morphological studies of phytolith shapes and dimensions and, in the last two decades, they have been increasingly involved in physiological st...
Preprint
Modern plant tissues are often processed for phytolith analysis. They represent a fundamental source of comparison for archeological and palaeoenvironmental phytolith assemblages; they efficiently serve for morphological studies of phytolith shapes and dimensions and, in the last two decades, they have been increasingly involved in physiological st...
Article
Full-text available
This study attempts a holistic approach to past foodways in prehistoric northern Gujarat, India, by considering evidence of food production, distribution, preparation and consumption. We present here the results of a pilot residue study, integrating lipid and starch grain analyses, conducted on 28 ceramic vessels from three Chalcolithic/Harappan se...
Chapter
Full-text available
The rhythms and organisation of daily life at Çatalhöyük were influenced by seasonal variation in the natural and social world its residents navigated. Seasonal changes in day length, temperature and rainfall shape overall productivity of the landscape (Fairbairn et al. 2005a). These biophysical cycles would have been punctuated by seasonal changes...
Preprint
Full-text available
The domestication of plants and the origin of agricultural societies has been the focus of much theoretical discussion on why, how, when, and where these happened. The 'when' and 'where' have been substantially addressed by bioarchaeology, thanks to advances in methodology and the broadening of the geographical and chronological scope of evidence....
Article
Full-text available
In this paper, we present a pilot study aimed at investigating the impact of subsistence strategies and environmental pressure on the distribution of ethnographically documented strategies to cope with drought and its effects across 35 current societies in Africa. We use freely accessible ethnographic databases to retrieve data on how a number of A...
Presentation
Mackay in 1938 had said that, ‘no arrowheads nor weapons of flint have as yet been found, and though this has been termed a Chalcolithic owing to the presence of these long flint flakes, copper and bronze already practically entirely ousted stone’. But when we looks at the artefacts found from most of the Harappan civilization/Indus Valley Civiliza...
Article
The expansion of forest farmers across tropical lowland South America during the Late Holocene has long been connected to climate change. The more humid conditions established during the Late Holocene are assumed to have driven the expansion of forests, which would have facilitated the dispersal of cultures that practised agroforestry. The Tupi, a...
Article
Full-text available
Recently, Agnihorti et al. reported on the unique discovery of seven 'organic rich balls' from the Early-Mature Harappan period site of 4MSR (Binjor). Using a combination of microbotanical, geochemical and isotopic analysis they argued that the objects were multi-grained food-balls that had ritual and social functions, with further reaching implica...
Article
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Catalhöyük is a renowned archaeological site in central Anatolia, best known for its Neolithic occupation dated from 7100 to 6000 cal BC. The site received worldwide attention early on for its large size, well-preserved mudbrick architecture, and elaborate wall paintings. Excavations at the site over almost three decades have unearthed rich archaeo...
Article
In this paper we present the results of phytolith investigations at two archaeological sites in northwestern Morocco: Khil (Tangier) and Kaf Taht el-Ghar (Tétouan). The two sites located in Western Maghreb, one on the Atlantic and one on the Mediterranean coast, were investigated in the framework of the AGRIWESTMED project. Phytolith analysis compl...
Chapter
In this chapter, we review archaeobotanical evidence for indigenous people’s uses of food plants during the Holocene in what is now Brazil. We present the diversity of plant species used, which includes native crops, such as manioc; exotic crops, such as maize; as well as fruit trees, nut trees, and palms. We discuss their association with varied h...
Article
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In the 12,000 years preceding the Industrial Revolution, human activities led to significant changes in land cover, plant and animal distributions, surface hydrology, and biochemical cycles. Earth system models suggest that this anthropogenic land cover change influenced regional and global climate. However, the representation of past land use in e...
Preprint
Full-text available
First described over 120 years ago in Brazil, Amazonian Dark Earths (ADEs) are expanses of dark soil that are exceptionally fertile and contain large quantities of archaeological artefacts. The elevated fertility of the dark and often deep A horizon of ADEs is widely regarded as an outcome of pre-Columbian human influence. Controversially, in their...
Preprint
Full-text available
Archaeological research provides clear evidence that the widespread formation of Amazonian Dark Earths (ADEs) in tropical lowland South America was concentrated in the Late Holocene, an outcome of sharp demographic growth that peaked towards 1000 BP. In their recent paper, however, Silva et al. propose that the high fertility of ADE is not of anthr...
Article
Although Rapa Nui has been proposed as a classic example of cultural collapse, this hypothesis has been repeatedly questioned. This paper investigates cultural continuity on Rapa Nui following the onset of deforestation through a study of red ochre pits. Red ochre pigments are well-known from various contexts on Rapa Nui, but until recently its ori...
Book
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Terra Incognita se ha configurado como un Libro Blanco que pretende identificar tendencias y reflexionar sobre las diferentes concepciones y prácticas de la investigación no disciplinar en nuestro entorno académico (el Sistema Español de Ciencia y Tecnología). Esta es una transición que implica un cierto cambio de paradigma, muy alineado con la inv...
Article
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Significance This paper illustrates the potential of machine learning-based classification of multisensor, multitemporal satellite data for the remote detection and mapping of archaeological mounded settlements in arid environments. Our research integrates multitemporal synthetic-aperture radar and multispectral bands to produce a highly accurate p...
Article
Full-text available
Seasonal variation in the natural world of Neolithic Çatalhöyük shaped the organization of daily life and social world of its residents. Seasonal cycles in climatic patterns, hydrology, growing seasons of wild and domestic plants, and seasonal behaviors of herded, hunted and gathered animals would have affected the overall productivity of the lands...
Preprint
FAO guidelines on water requirements for plant growth in the absence of irrigation, stipulate that cultivation is not viable in areas with less than 450mm of annual rainfall. Indeed, in all maps of agricultural land use, most hyper-arid, arid, and semi-arid drylands are considered unproductive. Yet, modern societies in arid and semi-arid drylands s...
Article
Full-text available
Human expansions motivated by the spread of farming are one of the most important processes that shaped cultural geographies during the Holocene. The best known example of this phenomenon is the Neolithic expansion in Europe, but parallels in other parts of the globe have recently come into focus. Here, we examine the expansion of four archaeologic...
Article
Full-text available
Most research on the plant genus Phoenix has focused on Phoenix dactylifera (date palm) due to its worldwide economic importance. Comparatively less attention has been devoted to other species within this genus that are also socio-economically important at a local scale, such as Phoenix theophrasti (Cretan date palm). The aim of this paper is to br...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic changes in land use and land cover (LULC) during the pre-industrial Holocene could have affected regional and global climate. Existing scenarios of LULC changes during the Holocene are based on relatively simple assumptions and highly uncertain estimates of population changes through time. Archaeological and palaeoenvironmental recons...
Chapter
Full-text available
Geoarchaeological investigations on Rapa Nui (Easter Island) revealed several hundred pits filled with reddish silty material. These pits were discovered in a fluvial terrace in a tributary valley east of the Quebrada Vaipu on the southern slope of Maunga Terevaka. The shape of the pits and the structure of the fillings leave no doubt about their a...
Chapter
Full-text available
The last decades have seen a steep rise in attention in Eurasian archaeology for the millets Panicum miliaceum and Setaria italica. While various identification criteria are available for finds of these taxa in the archaeological record, these mostly concern remains of the flowering part of the plant. Methods to differentiate other plant remains ar...
Article
The archaeology and ethnoarchaeology of rain-fed cultivation in arid and hyper-arid North Africa - Volume 93 Issue 370 - Carla Lancelotti, Stefano Biagetti, Andrea Zerboni, Donatella Usai, Marco Madella
Presentation
Part of the session: Upscaling palaeoecological, archaeological and historical records of land-use and land-cover change 1. Chair Marie-Jose Gaillard. Presentation abstact :The PAGES LandCover6K group is concerned with whether prehistoric human impacts on land cover were sufficiently large to have had a major impact on regional and global climate...
Article
Full-text available
Anthropogenic changes in land use and land cover (LULC) during the pre-industrial Holocene could have affected regional and global climate. Current LULC scenarios are based on relatively simple assumptions and highly uncertain estimates of population changes through time. Archaeological and palaeoenvironmental reconstructions have the potential to...
Article
Full-text available
RESUMO:Este trabalho apresenta uma revisão bibliográfica acerca de estudos ambientais realizados nos últimos onze anos no Brasil utilizando o bioindicador fitólitos, partículas de opala biogênica depositadas nas células vegetais. O objetivo é disponibilizar à comunidade científica trabalhos relevantes sobre a utilização dos fitólitos em estudos pal...
Presentation
Since 2007, the German Archaeological Institute and Kiel University have undertaken archaeolo- gical excavations on Rapa Nui (Easter Island, Chile). Excavations in 2011 and 2014 revealed pits at various locations on the island that contained alternating thin layers of reddish iron oxide, phytoliths and charred material, representing a new type of a...
Article
Full-text available
Dung has been an important material used by humans since at least the early Neolithic Period. It accumulated within domesticated animal enclosures and it was used as fuel and fertiliser as well as construction material. While the formers were studied in details, to date, the use of dung as a construction material received less attention. Here, we p...
Article
Full-text available
Many societal and environmental changes occurred between the 2nd millennium BC and the middle of the 2nd millennium AD in western Africa. Key amongst these were changes in land use due to the spread and development of agricultural strategies, which may have had widespread consequences for the climate, hydrology, biodiversity, and ecosystem services...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents a cross-cultural study of the relationship among the subsistence strategies , the environmental setting and the food sharing practices of 22 modern small-scale societies located in America (n = 18) and Siberia (n = 4). Ecological, geographical and economic variables of these societies were extracted from specialized literature...
Article
This study provides new data on the evolution of the landscape in south-western Amazonia during the Holocene and the impact of climate change and fluvial dynamics on the region's ecosystems. South-western Amazonia is covered by an extensive seasonally flooded savannah, known as the Llanos de Moxos. Severe drought during the southern hemisphere wint...
Preprint
Many societal and environmental changes occurred from the 2nd millennium BC to the middle of the 2nd millennium AD in western Africa. Key amongst these were changes in land use due to the spread and development of agricultural strategies, which may have had widespread consequences for the climate, hydrology, biodiversity, and ecosystem services of...
Presentation
The LandCover6K group is concerned with whether prehistoric human impacts on land cover were sufficiently large to have had a major impact on regional climates. Climate model simulations have shown that land use data sets can have large regional impacts on climate in the recent past and may have also done so during prehistory. However, there are ma...