ArticlePDF Available

Abstract and Figures

The diffusion of the use of Geographical Information Systems in archaeology has considerably increased in recent years. This multiplicity of applications is due mainly to the growing interest of archaeologists in modern methodologies for the management of archaeological data, surveyed by topographic, photogrammetric and remote sensing techniques. GIS have become a fundamental tool for managing, sharing, analyzing and visualizing spatially referenced data and they are completely substituting the traditional techniques used by archaeologists, based upon filling out forms, graphics and other paper documents. Besides in the modern global society, dominated by mass media such as Internet, the issue of utilization has become more and more important, and most of the more recent GIS applications (Multimedia GIS, WebGIS) take this aspect into consideration.
Content may be subject to copyright.








       

    





  

      









   








        
 
   

A. Scianna, B. Villa

   



          

      





     










        


















GIS applications in archaeology

      

           




 












A. Scianna, B. Villa

    




 






 















 
   

Features Strengths Weaknesses
Raster
format
It is preferable for modeling values
which continuously vary within the
territory.
Essential for 3D modeling
and for Map Algebra.
Large amount of computer
memory required.
Images blur at zoom
increase.
Vector
format
It is preferable for modeling discrete
values. Classic primitives of this
model are: points, polylines and
polygons.
Small amount of computer
memory required.
It is not influenced by
zooming. It is at the basis of
GIS topological rules.
It is not suited for modeling
values such as elevation,
water depth, temperature,
rainfall, continuously
varying upon earth surface.

GIS applications in archaeology












 
    



 




   








          









A. Scianna, B. Villa











    

         
       








GIS applications in archaeology




         

 

 



 


    

        











  

 
      




    
et al.


A. Scianna, B. Villa







































cc
et al.

     
GIS applications in archaeology






 Construction of spatial database. Spatial and attribute queries











  












Goal Type of data
Predictive analysis Data in very simple form, usually point or area data, 2D vector
Excavation documentation
Very heterogeneous 2D, 2.5D and/or 3D data in raster and vector format
such as CAD data from sketches or surveys, GIS data derived from CAD data,
raster data coming from cameras, low height aerial surveys (by balloons,
poles, drones). Data may have both simple or complex structure according to
configuration and shape of areas or objects to describe.
3D visualization
3D Vector and 2D or 2.5 D raster data in standardized form (usually a reduced
number of formats), archived also in very complex database structure. They
come from processing of excavation documentation data.

A. Scianna, B. Villa








   



 


ID FINDS DESCRIPTION MATERIAL AGE ARCHAEOLOGIST
… … … … …
255 Painted pottery Clay 3rd century BC Dr. Smith
256 Coin Bronze 4th century BC Dr. Johnson
… … … … …




SELECT*
FROM
WHERE 

GIS applications in archaeology





 




 



Management and use of distributed 3D data
by open source Web-GIS software
  
      

 
     


 Statistical methods








 


       
         

2           Interoperability and cooperative
management of geographic, dynamic, multidimentional and distributed data with Free and Open
Source GIS.
A. Scianna, B. Villa




χ


 Spatial Analysis

  




  












 Cluster analysis and density analysis
       











GIS applications in archaeology


      







 
.




.
          
 et al.) 











et al.
    

 Predictive modeling






A. Scianna, B. Villa


 




          









Minnesota Archaeological Predictive Model
 North Carolina GIS Archaeologi-
cal Predictive Model Project
 Map algebra










    





(Eq. 1)




GIS applications in archaeology













        


Digital Crete  
The archaeological Web-GIS of
Iowa   MAGIS  
   








   









   

A. Scianna, B. Villa














           
   
         




    

  
  





Virtual Museum of the Ancient
Via Flaminia   Virtual
Rome  

  

  et al.
et al.Virtual Rome


et al.
GIS applications in archaeology

VR  The Virtual Museum of Iraq











         









 






     
,









A. Scianna, B. Villa




   



         

















   
            



Pocket Archeonav
et al.

     
   
         

           


 


GIS applications in archaeology


          

Pocket Archeonav














  

 
A. Scianna, B. Villa

 





 




      
         







          

        
GIS applications in archaeology













  












    








          





A. Scianna, B. Villa



et al.












      
, 




GIS applications in archaeology










,






    




        
        














et al.
A. Scianna, B. Villa

        




















Interpreting Space: GIS and Archae-
ology
Forecasting statistical models of archaeological site location
 
Statistical modelling of archaeological sites locations as non-stationary
Cox processes and its use in forecasting
, Interactive Spatial Data Analysis

The Spatial Humanities: GIS and
the Future of Humanities Scholarship,
Sharing interpretation: The chal-
lenge of Open Source web approachProceedings of
the 2nd International Conference on Remote Sensing in Archaeology

.Revolution OS” in archeologia: esempi
di interfacce web per l’archeologia del paesaggio
Open Source, Free Software e Open Format nei processi di ricerca archeologici

Geographical Information Systems in Archaeology

The fuzzy approach to statistical analysis, 

GIS applications in archaeology

Hyperspectral techniques
and GIS for archaeological investigation

Virtual Reality in Geography
I sistemi Informativi Geografici in archeologia
Quantitative Geography: Perspec-
tives on Spatial Data Analysis
Spatial point pattern analy-
sis and its application in geographical epidemiology

   Digitalterrain modelling and three-dimensional surface graphics for
landscape and site analysis in Archaeology and Regional Planning
Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology
1987
    The diffusion of a new technology: A perspective on the
adoption of Geographic Information Systems within UK technology

Toward a regional GIS site information retrieval system: The
Oxfordshire Site and Monuments Record (SMR) prototypeSites
and Monuments: National Archaeological Records 

Multi-dimensional GIS: exploratory approaches to spatial
and temporal relationships within archaeological stratigraphy   
  Interfacing the Past: Computer Applications and Quantitative
Methods in Archaeology (CAA95)

A Guide to Field Methods in Archaeology: Approaches to
the Anthropology of the Dead
Archaeological Prediction and Risk
Management: Alternatives to Current Practice
   Predictive models for archaeological resource location

Computer Processing Techniques for Regional Modeling of Archaeological
Site Locations,
  The fundamental principles and practice of predictive archaeological
modelingMathematics and Information Science in Archaeology:
a Flexible Framework  

Geographic Information Systems and Archaeology, 
Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology 1991

Ranter’s corner: Bringing the camps together: GIS and ED
 
Archaeological modeling with GIS at scales large and smallRead-
ing Historical Spatial Information from Around the World: Studies of Culture and
Civilization Based on Geographic Information Systems DataProceedings of the 24th
International Research Symposium

An experiment in archaeological site
location: Modelling in the Netherlands using GIS techniques

A. Scianna, B. Villa

 The Environmental Basis of Mesolithic Settlement,  
The Mesolithic in Europe 

GIS in Archaeology: An Annotated
Bibliography

ccArchaeology and Geographical Information Systems: A European
Perspective
The use of sampling in archaeological survey

  
Back to 2nd AD. A VR on-line
experience with Virtual Rome ProjectVAST 2008. The 9th International Symposium
on Virtual Reality, Archaeology and Cultural Heritage

Archaeological Sampling Strategies 

  Experimental studies for the definition of 3D geospatial web services,
 WebMGS 2010 1st
International Workshop on Pervasive Web Mapping, Geoprocessing and Services,
, 

 3D Gis Data Model Using Open Source Software,Core
Spatial Databases Updating, Maintenance and Services – from Theory to Practice
, 

GIANT3D:Experimentations on a new 3D
data model for GIS

The last development of ARCHEO-
NAV: An OGC compliant navigator for archaeological sites running on PocketPC
Proceedings of CIPA XX International Symposium
Multimedia guide in archaeological
sites by GIS-GPS techniques, pocket-PCs and pocket-GPSs

ccSettlement pattern modelling through Boolean overlays of
social and environmental variables, New Tech-
niques for Old Times(CAA98)

Testing archaeological predictive models: A rough guide,
Layers of Perception. Proceedings of the 35th Interna-
tional Conference on Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology
(Berlin 2007)
Predictive modelling in Archaeology: A primer

Predictive modelling of archaeological site location: A case study in the
Midwest
 A predictive model of ar-
chaeological site location in the Western Shawnee National Forest
 
Explanation in Archaeology

GIS applications in archaeology

Practical Applications of GIS for Archaeologists: A Predic-
tive Modelling Toolkit
Going over old ground: GIS, archaeological theory and the act of per-
ceptionComputing the Past: Computer Applications
and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology (CAA 92)

 The use of GIS to understand regional variation in earlier Neolithic
Wessex   New Methods, Old Problems: Geographic Infor-
mation Systems in Modern Archaeological Research,   

Spatial Technology and Archaeology: The archaeological
applications of GIS
Conditional GIS surfaces and their potential for archaeological
predictive models,   Layers of Per-
ception,Proceedings of the 35th International Conference on Computer Applications
and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology (Berlin 2007)
Airborne multi-spectral prospection for buried archaeol-
ogy in mobile sand dominated systems,
Archaeological Prospecting: Kriging and simulation
  Simulation Methods in Archaeology






  
     




... Story mapping attaches characters and plots to data in a way that is engaging to a reader and makes the assimilation of information more natural, making it an ideal educational tool (Berendsen et al., 2018). There have been several projects in the past that utilised archaeological geospatial data in an educational digital platform, however, examples of similar projects for southern African archaeological sites are limited (Scianna and Villa, 2011). ...
... Settlement density was analysed first, using the spatial analysis of kernel density. The crucial component of the analysis is the selection of the appropriate search radius as the results are essentially affected by this distance (Scianna & Villa, 2011). It is necessary to choose a value at which the result will allow us to observe wider spatial relationships between features. ...
Article
Early medieval strongholds are a significant phenomenon in the archaeology of East Central Europe, as they mirror the political and socio‐economic changes occurring towards the end of the Early Middle Ages. This contribution is concerned with the site of Břeclav‐Pohansko (Czech Republic), which graphically illustrates the rise and fall of the Moravian principality during its short existence from the second half of the 9th to the beginning of the 10th century. The site has been systematically excavated over more than 60 years. The excavation work has been accompanied by numerous geophysical surveys. Based on comparing previous knowledge of settlement on the site and the results of magnetic prospection, we evaluated similarities and differences in the central district of the stronghold using statistics and spatial analysis. Upon analysis of the success rate of the applied geophysical method, we present the resulting model of the settlement structure. The results confirm that the structure of the built‐up area in the central district at Pohansko follows an original pattern which has no analogues in the Central Danubian region in the given period.
... Today, archaeologists accommodate most of their spatial needs at the level of sites and landscapes by using Geographic Information Systems (GIS). These are specifically spatial databases (see Conolly and Lake 2006;Lock and Pouncett 2017;Scianna and Villa 2011) and do not need to be limited to large scales. ...
Chapter
This chapter introduces the concepts and tools used to design databases, including information languages and data models. With emphasis on relational databases, which use controlled redundancy to link data in various related files or tables, it highlights the importance of planning databases carefully before trying to put any database structure into practice, or adding any data, so as to avoid costly errors that could have been avoided. It also emphasizes the importance of carefully documenting the “metadata” of the database and taking care to curate the database through future software and hardware changes so that data are preserved for posterity.
Article
Full-text available
Egyptian civilization has long flourished along the banks of the Nile, in the south (e.g. Luxor and Aswan), the Middle (e.g. Giza ‘Great Pyramids’) and North (e.g. San El‐Hagar and Buto), as well as the less populated areas of the Sinai Peninsula, the Western Desert and the Red Sea coast. There are archaeological sites date back to the Palaeolithic period and cover the Pre‐dynastic, Pharaonic, Hellenistic‐Roman, Coptic and Muslim periods. Across the Nile Delta, many of these archaeological sites have disappeared beneath Nile alluvium from the annual inundation or through intensive agricultural use, climate changes and other anthropogenic activities. This study aims to detect the long‐term changes in the landscape of the archaeological area of Burullus on the Mediterranean shoreline in the North Delta of Egypt. By combining data from historic topographic maps with Radar Sentinel‐1 (High‐resolution Level‐1 GRD) and SRTM data, topographic signatures in satellite imagery can be compared with the historic record of archaeological sites, many of which are now lost. Image layering, enhancement and analysis using ENVI 5.1, ArcMap 10.4.1 and Snap 8.0 software as well as Google Earth Pro facilitated the imagery identification and acquisition. The results of this study provide a means of quantifying the significant loss of cultural heritage sites due to anthropogenic and natural changes in the landscape. This analysis has also identified two—previously unknown—potential archaeological sites. Finally, the reconstruction of the paleolandscape of the study area shows the changing relationships of ancient and historic settlements with natural and man‐made waterways over time. Integrating remote sensing data and historic maps offers a method for evaluating paleolandscapes and locating disappeared archaeological sites that can be applied in other areas of Egypt and the world.
Conference Paper
Recent advances in computer science allowed people to explore new possibilities for the fruition of CH all around the world. The development of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) in the field of territorial systems and the evolution of Virtual Reality (VR) solutions opened new scenarios for the valorization of cultural goods. At the same time, recent advances in digital photogrammetry and 3D interactive navigation models on WEB-based on WebGL technologies offered new opportunities of digital fruition of CH. Considering this panorama, the presented work shows how the integration of these technologies gives a precious added value to the virtual fruition of CH. In particular, it has been considered a cultural path in the La Loggia district, located into the historic centre of Palermo. This area is rich in monuments, many of them not accessible to the public, within the I-ACCESS European Project. The starting idea was to enlarge and diffuse, as much as possible, the accessibility to the knowledge of cultural goods in a virtual way, stimulating at the same time their real fruition. The developed solution implemented a GIS platform HTML 5 based and freely available online from desktop and mobile devices. In the virtual tour, everyone could navigate inside the cultural path, accompanied by touristic information, and come and visit the indoor environments of the main monuments. This work offers a new approach to accessibility and represents an example of how new technologies could support the diffusion of knowledge of CH.
Article
Full-text available
This article traces how urban communities operating with a humoral or Galenic medical paradigm understood and confronted the health challenges facing them, using the extraordinarily well-documented case of Bologna, Italy. Working within a GIS environment, the authors spatially analyse over 3,500 events recorded by the Ufficio del fango concerning violations of the city's health-related ordinances, augmented by other demographic and material data. As such, the study not only adds specificity to recent attempts to enrich the field of pre-modern public health, but also demonstrates that the Bolognese administration had a sophisticated and evolving understanding of communal health risks, and exposes several discrepancies between policy and practice.
Article
Full-text available
This paper focuses on the potential application of GIS (Geographical Information Systems) to the management of archaeological excavations. Based on the case studies of Huataviro and Las Orquideas (Imbabura, Ecuador), its usefulness is discussed and the challenges of the application of these systems to store, manage and analyze excavation data are studied.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The port of Siraf, whose ruins lie beneath a small city, is located on a narrow plain, 250 kilometers southeast of Boushehr and 36 kilometers east of the port of Kangan. Having been the most prominent historical port of the Persian Gulf since the Islamic period, Siraf has been not only an ideal place for the exchange of goods between China and the Mediterranean but also an eminent centre for dialogue between civilizations, religions, cultures and traditions of different nations. However, this comes as no surprise considering that Siraf was located on the maritime Silk Road and that it represented one of the greatest meeting points of East and West. In recent decades, in order to determine the genuine dimension of Siraf, several terrestrial and coastal archaeological surveys and excavations have been conducted. During the past two decades, Siraf has undergone immense transformations due to some changes in the region. Thanks to our project that is still unfinished at this stage, a significant number of raster and vector layers originated from the digitalization of archaeological georeferenced plans have been produced with the use of cartographic resources and information obtained from aerial photographs and satellite images. These and other data from archaeological reports and historical sources have flowed into an archaeological database. The analysis of this material through some applications such as QGIS, Auto Cad Map 3D and Microsoft Office Access has supplied a wide, integrated and further developable basis to study the current conditions of the structures and to identify potential damaging and destructive factors connected to human activity and natural causes. This research is in fact the result of a PhD project supported by the Università di Torino. KEY WORDS: Siraf, GIS Project, Database, Persian Gulf
Article
Full-text available
RESUMEN. Este artículo busca discutir sobre los usos y potencialidades que el SIG (sistema de información geo-gráfica) tiene para su aplicación en la arqueología de cam-po, focalizándose en la prospección telemática. Con base en un caso específico de estudio, se plantean las ventajas y oportunidades que tiene un SIG aplicado a la arqueolo-gía para almacenar, gestionar y analizar datos con espe-cial énfasis en la prospección. PALABRAS CLAVE. SIG; arqueología; prospección; Ecuador. ABSTRACT. This paper aims to discuss the potential use of GIS (geographic information system) as applied on archaeological fieldwork, focusing on the telematic survey. Based on a specific case study, the advantages and challenges of applying a methodology for storing, managing, and analyzing archaeological data with emphasis on survey are discussed.
Article
Full-text available
Nowadays, technologies propose vast variety of different solutions to all stages of archaeological research. Geoinformatics, for instance, became the necessary part of archaeology since the end of the last century. Geoinformational provision of excavations and research, together with photogrammetry and geospatial database tools proved to be incredibly efficient. However, qualified scientific approach requires systematic use of all available instruments. In order to avoid the chaotic and random use of digital tools, an archaeologist should implement a complex approach to the geospatial provision of any research. It means qualified and rational use of geospatial database, geoinformational systems and photogrammetry from the very beginning of research — on the stage of planning. Only considering all the issues — from the coordinate system choose to the database management system structure — scientist can obtain a high quality of archaeological data that must be accurate, complete, interoperable, unified and precise. The advantages of geospatial databases for archaeological researches comparing to instrumental geoinformational system or analogue data sometimes are still the issue for discussion, so their usability must be considered and proved. Dynamic changeability, use of third dimension and fuzzy logic operators, interoperability, adaptation possibilities and a capacity to include the non-spatial data are the most important of them. Besides, use of database management systems, constraints, query procedures and spatial and conditional selections make databases extremely useful for the data mining, analysis and visualization. The complex, systematic and rational use of the entire geoinfomatics toolkit is strongly recommended to provide a concurrent and efficient archaeological research.
Article
A comprehensive manual on GIS from the concept and purpose through the setting up of the computer side, staffing, etc to realization of projects. The main sections cover: term definition, mathematization, trends in GIS, decomposition, computational tools, projections, selected existing systems, utilization in geographic prediction, GIS and regional planning, the development of GIS in Czechoslovakia. There are many figures and two program examples. Also included is a Czech-English-Russian dictionary of selected relevant terms. -M.A.Bass (after English summary)
Article
Predictive models are tools for projecting known patterns or relationships into unknown times or places. Archaeologists have documented only a fraction of the millions of sites in the New World, while thousands of sites are destroyed each year to make way for modern land development. One way to help understand and protect these sites is to create formal models capable of predicting where they are located. Predictive modelling emerged only recently as an important component of archaeological research. An underlying key to the success of these models is the fact that archaeological sites tend to recur in favourable environmental settings. Predictive models take advantage of these redundancies; they exploit contrasts between the environmental characteristics of places where sites do and do not occur. With appropriate data it is possible to make predictions from a relatively small sample of known locations to a much broader area. Empirical approaches to predictive modelling may require vast amounts of environmental and archaeological data. Many institutions are developing networks of computer hardware and software designed to create, process, and display spatial data. These networks are usually referred to as GIS. This paper has two main objectives. The first is to describe briefly a predictive model of prehistoric site location that was developed at the Illinois State Museum for an area of southern Illinois. The second objective of the paper is to discuss the main causes of the model's deficiencies and to outline appropriate solutions. -from Author
Article
This chapter describes various empiric correlative models for locational prediction developed in both cultural resource management (CRM) and academic research contexts. There is no doubt that the recent popularity of predictive models is due to their promise in two areas: cost-effectiveness and utility in planning. Several of the inferential models reviewed in the chapter appear to provide predictions of location that are sufficiently accurate and precise to be used for planning purposes. Through correct use of sampling procedures and statistical techniques, predictive models can be built that perform this management function adequately, while making little or no contribution to understanding locational processes. This frequently happens in the case where such models have uninterpretable independent variables or fail to differentiate significant subsets of activities. On the positive side, the surveys on which these models were based have produced an immense amount of site location data accompanied by the simultaneous collection of much useful environmental information. In conclusion, predictive models can provide both a planning service and one framework for incorporating CRM studies into wider research concerns.