The Third Shanghai Archaeology Forum to Be Held in Shanghai
Created On : 2017-12-05    Views : 81

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Themed Water, Society and Civilization, the Third Shanghai Archaeology Forum will be hosted in Shanghai during December 8-11. The opening ceremony will be held at 9:00 AM on December 8 at the library of the Baoshan Campus of Shanghai University. The forum is jointly sponsored by CASS and Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, and undertaken by the Institute of Archaeology of CASS, Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Cultural Heritage Administration, Shanghai Academy and Shanghai University. More than 100 experts, scholars and researchers from major archaeological institutions and colleges, both at home and abroad, will be invited for participation. At the forum, the awards for important field archaeological findings and important archeological research results across the world will be appraised and announced, and a grand awards ceremony will be held for the selected projects. Please wait and see!


 Theme of the Forum

The forum is themed Water, Society and Civilization, and attendees will do cross-cultural and comparative research, and explore the complex relations between water resources, water management, and ancient civilization, with a view to advancing the academic exchanges and research cooperation among scholars from different countries.

Water is closely linked with the existence and development of humans. During the millions of years before humans entered the agricultural society, natural rainfall was the only water source that the hunting and gathering society depended on. The increasingly complex relationships between the use of water and food production, social organization, and religious belief, promoted the development of human society and its organizational mechanism. Either in daily life, irrigation, flood prevention and the storage, drainage and transport of water, or in rites and religion, water was crucial to the prosperity of the ancient world, including the rise of cities and civilization centers across the world. Humans built cities close to rivers or coasts, and gained political and economic advantage through controlling water resources. With the expansion of cities, the demand for water resources grew, and that promoted a series of technological innovations, including the invention of irrigation and drainage systems, water storage facilities and long-distance transport technologies. The technological innovations improved the output of food, triggered the continued growth of population, and made political organizations more complicated. The utilization and management of water resources, for purposes like drinking, bathing, or ritual activities, at the State or local level, and from the Grand Canal built in the Sui and Tang Dynasties to the diversion canals in ancient Rome, varied with places, times, and cultures.

The fast-growing demand for water and the sustainability of water resources are the biggest challenges facing the world. Urbanization, population expansion, economic development, political conflict, and human-induced climate change is building adverse pressure on the earth’s water resources. The availability of water for both the present as well as the future becomes a pressing issue. Since the 1950s, when German historian and sinologist Karl Wittfogel proposed “oriental despotism” about hydraulic civilization, archeologists have paid increasing attention to the investigation and research of water, water sceneries, management of water resources, and development of sustainable agriculture, as well as the relationship between water, religion, and rites. The archaeological research on water and the development of human society helps us deepen the knowledge about a series of key issues about the current society and future water resources, particularly the lack of water resources, water disasters, and local practice in river regulation. The knowledge goes beyond general principles or processes, and focuses on the analysis of specific historical scenarios and concrete cases. So, archeological research on the issues concerning water resources is of great significance.


Main Objectives

The main objectives of the Third Shanghai Archaeology Forum include:

(1) Granting the “Shanghai Archaeology Forum Award” to excellent individuals or organizations, to award their important field archaeological findings, or innovative, creative, and scientific research results over the past three years;

(2) Promoting cross-cultural and comparative research and exploration of the complex relations between water resources, water management, and ancient civilization;

(3) Encouraging archeologists to conduct close cooperation with scholars in other fields on the research on water resources and management, particularly the discussion about interdisciplinary issues and those with a long-term vision.


Agenda

December 8, 2017

Opening ceremony and awarding of the “Shanghai Archaeology Forum Award”
Reports about the projects winning the “Shanghai Archaeology Forum Award”

December 9, 2017

Keynote speech: Water, Society and Civilization
Special meeting about new archeological findings and research in China

December 10, 2017

Forum visit 

December 11, 2017

Sub-forum speeches and discussions

December 12, 2017

Departure


Shanghai Archaeology Forum

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Group photo of the Second Shanghai Archaeology Forum

Launched in 2013, Shanghai Archaeology Forum (SAF) is a high-end platform for academic exchanges on world archeology and is aimed to publicize archeological results, promote archeological research, and demonstrate the modern significance of cultural heritage. The forum has been devoted to increasing exchanges and cooperation in the international archeological circle, improving the level of archeological investigations, excavations, and research across the world, and advancing the protection and utilization of archeological resources and cultural heritage. It works to fulfill the historical mission of archeology, highlights the past experience of humans, focuses on the protection of the ecological environment and the sustainable development of human society, and advocates the inheritance of human cultures and traditions and the respect for and protection of cultural diversity.

The forum is jointly sponsored by CASS and Shanghai Municipal People’s Government, and undertaken by the Institute of Archaeology of CASS, Shanghai Municipal Bureau of Cultural Heritage Administration, Shanghai Academy and Shanghai University. It is held once every two years. The first session was hosted at China Art Museum, Shanghai in 2013, and the second session at Shanghai University in 2015.

Release of globally important field archeological findings and important archeological research results

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Awarding ceremony for important field archeological findings at

the First Shanghai Archeological Forum 

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Awarding ceremony for important field archeological findings at

the Second Shanghai Archeological Forum

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Awarding ceremony for 11 archeological research results at

the Second Shanghai Archeological Forum

About ten awards, for important field archeological findings and important archeological research results across the world, will be appraised and announced at every session of the Shanghai Archeology Forum, and a grand awards ceremony will be held for the selected projects.

The awards for important field archeological findings and important archeological research results have been among the awards that the archeologists throughout the world contend for, and can be reputed as the “Academy Awards for Archeology”.

Important field archeological findings refer to the important field archeological investigations and excavations that can deepen or even change our knowledge about ancient culture, in specific regions or throughout the world. 

Important archeological research results are targeted at special projects or archeological research based on lab analysis. They can be comprehensive research projects which last for years, major breakthroughs in theories, methodologies or technologies, or ground-breaking results based on new archeological findings. The nominated field archeological findings and research results must be original and directly come from lawful and scientific archeological investigations, or excavations or rigorous and solid scientific research. The Forum Appraisal Committee will appraise the recommended projects in accordance with the principles of strict selection, fairness, and impartiality. The projects to be appraised include important field archeological findings and important archeological research results, with no more than ten projects to be awarded in each kind.


World-Famous Archeologists to Gather at  and Address the Forum

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Colin Renfrew (Cambridge University)

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William Fash (Harvard University)

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Charles Higham (University of Otago, New Zealand)

Professors from dozens of the world’s top universities, including Harvard, Cambridge, and Oxford, scholars from foreign archeological research institutes, such as Egypt’s Ministry of Antiquities, Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History, the Institute for the History of Material Culture of the Russian Academy of Sciences, and India’s National Administration of Cultural Heritages, as well as famous experts from domestic archeological institutes and colleges will be invited to the forum. 

The participating experts will discuss the latest progress in archeological theories and methodologies and exchange ideas about research results, so as to advance the academic exchanges and research cooperation among scholars in different countries.

The third session of the forum will include nine public archeological lectures to be held at Shanghai University and Shanghai Museum, introducing to the public world-famous archeological findings and research results, like the Maya civilization in Central America, ancient Egypt civilization, and the civilization of Angkor, Cambodia.