Professor by special appointment / guest
René Cappers holds the chair of Ecology and Palaeo-Ecology of the Near East, by special appointment. The chair is co-funded by the Faculty of Archaeology and the Netherlands Institute for the Near East (NINO).
René Cappers (1957) studied biology at the university of Groningen and specialized in plant ecology and archaeobotany. After finishing his study, he worked at the Dutch National Institute of Educational Measurement (Cito, Arnhem) and wrote his Ph.D-thesis dealing with methodological aspects of archaeobotanical research. Postdoc projects concerned the study of the modeling of the transition to farming in the Near East and the Roman trade with Africa south of the Sahara, Arabia and India. Recent archaeobotanical research in the Near East is carried out in Turkey (including Ilipinar, Mentese, Barcin Höyük, Güvercinkayasi and Tepecik), Syria (Sabia Abyad), Egypt (Theben Desert Road and the Fayum) , Greece (Geraki) and Italy (Lazio and Calabria). Since 2002 he is co-director, together with Dr. Willeke Wendrich (UCLA), of the Fayum Project. This project includes excavations at the Neolithic sites Kôm W and Kôm K (and its associated upper K pits), an excavation at the Greek-Roman settlement Karanis (Kôm Aushim) and surveys in the surrounding desert.