A Workshop on Understanding Wetland Palaeoecology/ Environmental Archaeology and Integrated Microscopy Approaches in Archaeobotany

A Workshop on Understanding Wetland Palaeoecology/ Environmental Archaeology and Integrated Microscopy Approaches in Archaeobotany


The PGIAR is planning to organize a workshop on understanding wetland palaeoecology/ environmental archaeology and integrated microscopy approaches in archaeobotany on 13th  – 14th of December, 2018. This workshop will include lectures, discussions, and demonstrations on microscopic observations on the materials collected from the Horton Plains, Muthurajawella wetlands/Negombo Lagoon and Wilpattu. The workshop will be conducted by a team comprising of Dr. R. Premathilake from the PGIAR and Prof. C. O. Hunt, Professor of Cultural Palaeoecology, School of Natural Science and Psychology, Liverpool John Moores University, United Kingdom, Editor, the Journal of Archaeological Science-Report and Editorial Board Member, Journal of Archaeological Science. The objective of this workshop will be to understand the importance of wetland palaeoecology and sampling strategies used in environmental archaeology, e.g., understanding palaeo-climate, palaeo-vegetation, and human activities in the past. The lectures will be conducted in English and at the end of each lecture a summary will be given in Sinhala.

The targeted groups are final year archaeology special students,  recent archaeology graduates, and  Botany and Geology graduates who are interested in Environmental Archaeology.

Please register using the following registration form. Please scroll down for schedule.


Registration Form

Institutional Affiliation:(University students should be final year students of the Special Degree Programme in Archaeology)

Educational Level



13th December 2018
Start time9.00 am

Dr. T. R. Premathilake

9.15-10.15Keynote Lecture: Multi-method investigations of environmental change and human impact in the Tropics: lessons from Southeast Asia

Prof. C. O. Hunt

10.45-11.15Introduction to environmental archaeology of Sri Lanka

Dr. S. U. Deraniyagala

11.15-12.00Experience on faunal remain analysis from citadel excavation in Anuradhapura

Prof.  R. M. M. Chandraratne  

1.15-2.00Progress on environmental archaeology research in Sri Lanka

Dr. T. R. Premathilake

2.00-2.30Micro-charcoal and pollen proxy inferred environmental changes during the mid-late Holocene from the Horton Plains Central Sri Lanka

Mrs. Nuvanprabha Kapugeekiyana Whittall (M. Sc)

2.30-3.00Understanding phytolith Taphonomy on archaeological context:  a case study from Fahien Rockshelter

Mrs. Sewwandhi  Gunawardena  (M. Sc)

3.15-3.45Palaeo-environmental records from Rockshelters in Sri Lanka

Dr. Nimal Perera

3.45-4.00Final Discussion
14th December 2018
Start time9.00 am
9.00-9.30Introduction to integrated microscopy approaches in archaeo-botany

Dr. T. R. Premathilake

9.30-10.30A Video: on sample collection procedures  in Muthurajawella wetland

(1)  Stratigraphical coring

(2)  Understanding litho-, bio- and chrono-stratigraphy

(3)  Sampling and Sub-samplings

(4)  Laboratory protocols

Prof. C. O. Hunt and Dr. T. R. Premathilake

10.45-12.15Demonstration: microscope session for modern pollen/spores and fossil pollen, NPP and phytoliths

Prof. C. O. Hunt

Dr. T. R. Premathilake



1.15-2.30Understanding issues related to micro fossil taphonomy (e.g. pollen, phytolith, NPP and micro-charcoal)

Prof. C. O. Hunt

2.45-3.15Presenting microscopic data and final discussion on archaeo-botany

Prof. C. O. Hunt and Dr. T. R. Premathilake

3.00-4.00Poster presentation by Master Students

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Comments (5)

  • Avatar
    Prabodha Weerarathne Reply

    Just a quick question. This form looks like this workshop is organised only for Archaeology graduates and final year undergraduate students. What about other postgraduate students? The researchers from fields like botany or geology who are interested in archaeology?

    December 6, 2018 at 10:23
    • Avatar
      Sri Lanka Archaeology Reply

      We will check with Director, PGIAR and let you know.

      December 6, 2018 at 10:26
    • Avatar
      Sri Lanka Archaeology Reply

      You can join.

      December 6, 2018 at 20:45
  • Avatar
    Asela, M. D. C Reply

    is it possible to participate others who are interested in this subject?

    December 6, 2018 at 11:48
    • Avatar
      Sri Lanka Archaeology Reply

      If you are a botany or geology graduate, you can join.

      December 6, 2018 at 20:48

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