Inaugural Workshop of the EGYLandscape Project
Inaugural Workshop of the EGYLandscape Project: Sources, Methods, and Tools
Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies – Philipps-Universität Marburg 3-5 September 2019
The inaugural workshop to kick-off the EGYLandscape Project took place over three fascinating and busy days in September at the University of Marburg in Germany. The first workshop was centered on giving the project focus and momentum as well as laying the groundwork for its duration. In addition to becoming acquainted with each other’s research projects, the workshop also gave a space for the project team to get to know each other. Fostering collegiality in the EGYLandscape Project team is important to the project’s overall goals of scholarly cooperation and the development of an interdisciplinary approach to environmental studies in medieval and early modern Egypt. As such, the workshop started with a welcome reception at the Center for Near and Middle Eastern Studies on the evening of 3 September. From the start, it was clear that the project encourages collaboration amongst the international team in an interdisciplinary approach that bridges the gap between archaeologists and historians, with special attention to geography, environment, and mapping.
Over the next day and a half, the individual team members introduced their ongoing research projects. This introduction focused specifically on the issues of methodology, sources, and tools. This first look allowed everyone on the team to think about where there may be overlap between projects — in hopes of cooperation, how to deal with source availability or restrictions, and an exchange of feedback and brainstorming about how to move forward. On the attached program, you can see the wide variety of the projects and topics presented.
The meeting also highlighted the commitment of the EGYLandscape Project to develop new resources — during the lifetime of the project — for the wider academic community including GIS and other data types. A GIS mapping project — “Survey of Medieval Egypt” — is now ready to start. Additionally, the project will create at least two publications — a midterm journal issue and a final edited volume — as well as monthly working papers to be hosted online. The project leadership team discussed official partnerships. These have already been completed with the Institut français d’archéologie orientale (IFAO), Centre d’études alexandrines(CEAlex), and the American Research Center in Egypt (ARCE).