Noyce Conference Room
Working Group

All day


Our campus is closed to the public for this event.

This working group will bring together archaeologists, historians, and cultural evolutionary theorists to receive an introduction to a new research tool known as the Database of Religious History, get hands-on experience creating entries and using its built-in analytical tools, provide feedback on its design and data-gathering approach, and suggest new analyses that could be performed using the database in conjunction with other data sources. Participants will discuss the challenges inherent to the DRH project and others like it, including converting qualitative information scattered across field reports, monographs and journal articles into the sort of quantitative data that is required to test hypotheses about cultural evolutionary dynamics against the historical record. Themes to be discussed include the unique costs and benefits of working directly with humanities scholars, the challenges involved in making categorical judgments when dealing with complex and often patchy archaeological and textual data, and the various uses to which large-scale cultural databases can be put.


Scott OrtmanScott OrtmanExternal Professor
Edward SlingerlandEdward SlingerlandDistinguished University Scholar and Professor of Philosophy
Research Collaboration

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