WORLD NEOLITHIC CONGRESS 2024
4 - 8 NOVEMBER 2024 SANLIURFA, TÜRKİYE
SESSIONS

G: GLOBAL
R: REGIONAL
P: PAPER / POSTER: RECENT FINDS, RECENT RECOVERIES

Size of the sessions:
Sessions on global perspective can be up to 11 sittings, each setting being 90 minutes which means 4 talks of 20 minutes or 5 talks of 15 minutes.
Accordingly, a full session may be up to 11 sittings consist of 44 talks of 20-minutes or 55 talks of 15-minutes.
Likewise, the second group (R) those with more limited scope, geographic topic will have 6 sittings that is 24 talks of 20-minutes or 30 talks of 15-minutes.
The third group (P), site-based or recent recoveries group will be paper presentations of 20-minutes and/or posters.

Global Perspectives on the Neolithic

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Abstract
Archaeologists continue to define and frame the Neolithic in terms of a progressive step towards new forms of economy (farming). In turn, these developments are linked to other phenomena, chiefly domestication, but also storage, sedentism and increasing social complexity. Recent decades have seen growing critique of these stadial perspectives, with acceptance of an expansive and persistent ‘middle-ground’ between foraging and farming. This typically involves a range of deliberate interventions to achieve ‘low-level food production’ across plant, animal and also aquatic resources. However, the dynamics and long-term potentials of these divergent trajectories are poorly understood and would benefit from renewed efforts at global comparative analysis. This session focuses on the theme of ‘Long Neolithics’ in different world regions. Papers are invited to focus on the complexity, duration and internal diversity of local Neolithics, and especially on the characteristics of ‘alternative’ social-ecological trajectories that do not culminate in intensive agriculture, including their demographic potentials, ecological sustainability and cultural resilience. Focal themes include (but are not limited to) emergence and displacement of ‘lost crops’, diverse human-animal interventions, and especially the modification and cultivation of ‘wild’ landscapes, forests, wetlands, grasslands and coastal zones in ways that generate distinctive place-based food systems that in some regions have persisted into historical times.

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Abstract
The session invites us to test the term Neolithic and conventional understandings and models of Neolithisation processes from regional and global perspectives by reflecting on new findings (such as productive foraging) and confronting them with evidence not fitting.
We always come up against the applicability limits of these terms when they inappropriately reflect the complexity and intricacy of phenomena or evoke misleading generalisations for their local, regional, supra-regional and global variabilities. "Neolithic" phenomena and processes also occurred before or after Neolithic "core periods", were polycentric and polycyclic in various ways and geographically shifting, reversible, failing, behaved acyclic/asynchronous.
The tendency of research to prioritise individual stimuli and/or to negate multidisciplinary holistic approaches reinforces the conceptual problems with the terms.
The session aims to open a global academic discourse to highlight the potential pitfalls of "reductionism" in Neolithic research and to discuss if the world's Neolithics share basic traits and a common nature in creating the new social phenotype characteristic for productive lifeways (as opposed to foraging lifeways).
The productive use of natural and human resources
- including the cognitive territories with their skills and dispositions created to serve these purposes
– was aimed at control towards security, growth/reproducibility, and defence. Do these characterise all Neolithics to varying degrees, without foraging elements ever disappearing completely?
Each contribution should attempt to give a brief outline of the relevant traits of the regional/ supra-regional Neolithic trajectories (Subsistence modes, Environmental technologies and adaptations, Built territories, Technologies and consumption, Social organisation, Belief/ Cognitive systems, Exchange networks) and outline which research approaches shaped these results. This is in order to approach the question of which interacting systems enabled the sustainable establishment and adaptation of productive environments, impaired them or caused them to fail. Was productive behaviour the common denominator and momentum of these processes, or do the globally different permanent transitions from foraging to producing - from taking to making
- include substantially different human dispositions and ontologies?
All these questions are intended to depict the polycentric and asynchronous panorama of early productive humans.

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Abstract
This session examines six major regions, located around the globe, of transition from foraging to food production. Presenters are asked to give their current opinions, for their regions of expertise, about the following basic issues:
a) trajectories of animal and plant domestication;
b) trends in settlement sedentism and patterning;
c) changes in human population density;
d) trends in human population history, acknowledging current debates in genetics and linguistics.
Were the transitions driven mainly by indigenous enterprise, or did they involve contact with, or immigration by, food producing populations from external sources?
Presenters should outline what we think we know at present, and suggest important goals for future research. The aim of the session is to generate broad multidisciplinary and comparative perspectives.
Taking stock is important, and we will invite speakers both from the Scientific Committee and from beyond to express succinctly (in 20-minute bursts) how they perceive their region of expertise.
Suggested regions:
1. Southwest Asia
2. East Asia
3. Africa
4. New Guinea
5. Mesoamerica
6. South America

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Abstract
While theorists originally assumed that population dynamics of early farmers can be described by a logistic S-shaped curve, evidence is accumulating that initial increases were often followed by population declines. This pattern is evident both in population proxies based on archaeological indicators, and in regional and continental-scale studies of aggregated radiocarbon (14C) dates.
In the session we want to address the question whether boom/bust cycles are a universal feature of early farming societies, and if not, what is the relative frequency of such dynamics?
We welcome comparative studies, either among different regions, or among different population proxies in the same region. To facilitate a meaningful discussion and debate, we also highly encourage the participation from scholars whose work shows evidence against boom/bust patterns in any region.
In line with the above, we aim to have a session that covers the following topics in a balanced way:
- Case studies of estimating population numbers and main conclusions.
- Case studies from outside of Europe specifically Africa would be very welcome.
- Studies that perform a systematic comparison among world regions and argue for or against universal patterns.
- Studies that compare 14C-based results with other proxies; studies that take a multi-proxy approach and estimate population numbers from a combination of evidence.
- Studies that build and present large-scale databases of available evidence and develop methodology for preprocessing, processing and analyzing the data in them.
- Studies that present and evaluate possible causes of population declines.

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Abstract
Can we reconcile historically contingent circumstances with universalizing generalities? Further, is it possible to bridge the complexities of past landscapes using an analytical framework that is often unstable? The Neolithic has been continually redefined and deconstructed to be used as “technical shorthand.” This shorthand is deployed worldwide to describe vast changes, yet its use as a global explanatory framework becomes problematic when applied to discrete regional contexts. This session aims to understand how the concept of a “Neolithic” may obscure a more holistic understanding of specific human-environment relationships. We center the outcomes of changing relationships between subsistence practices, ecological impacts and transforming landscapes. Emphasizing differences in the archaeological record and high resolution datasets, we draw on a range of case studies that promote a conception of the Neolithic as the relational dynamics of people intentionally transforming their social and physical environments. This conceptualization encompasses dialectic human interactions with landscapes. Through analysis of subsistence practices, shifting landscapes, and the lifeways of peoples living outside of states and urban environments, this session emphasizes the dramatically different specific histories of various “Neolithics'' throughout the world.

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Abstract
The idea that changes in climate have acted as a stimulus for events in human history is a long-standing one. Some of this work sees the relationship as a deterministic one, in which climatic adversity prompted societal decline or collapse, often inferred from archaeological evidence of regional site abandonment. But whether determinist or possibilist in character, the relationship between climate and society has generally been envisaged as one in which periods of favourable climate would expand the food supply and hence allow human populations to grow. By the same logic, adverse climatic conditions, such as major droughts, have been linked to societal and demographic crises, as the food supply shrank and human populations exceeded the available resources.
In regions such as southwest Asia it has long been hypothesized that the beginnings of Neolithic agriculture were connected to the major shift in global climate at the end of the last Ice Age from cold (and generally dry) to warmer and generally wetter. This session will explore the links between climatic changes and the emergence and spread of early farming societies in different geographical settings where agriculture and sedentary life developed, from Mesoamerica, through Africa and Europe to South and East Asia. It seeks to explore research that critically evaluates the available evidence and is genuinely interdisciplinary in character.

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Abstract
Archaeological research was slow to start in the tropics. However, it has often known important developments, especially in recent years. The archaeology carried out along the equatorial belt shows specificities that distinguish it notably from that practiced elsewhere. It has been the source of original and fruitful theoretical and methodological approaches, in which interdisciplinarity has generally played an essential role. Contrary to what has long been believed, tropical societies have had very different social and political experiences from our own. If the opposition between hunters-gatherers and farmers seems less important there than in other parts of the world, social developments have nevertheless experienced a significant diversity whose mechanisms are not yet well understood and which are already present with the Neolithic processes. These initial developments show specificities that are not found in temperate regions and that goes beyond the simple fact of not breeding animals. Thus, the question of the tropical centers of plant domestication and birth of agriculture has recently given the tropics their rightful role. Similarly, several major inventions that have marked human history over the last 10,000 years have taken place in the tropics. More than elsewhere, the relationship between man and his environment has been posed, and shows how much the current equatorial environments are the result of complex interactions between societies and their landscapes, in short, the result of a history in which these tropical worlds have entered and whose effects on the environment, as well as on non-European knowledge, are exceptional.

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Abstract
The most significant developments in the past 30 years in the study of Neolithic people have been the emergence of biomolecular and stable isotope proxies. The most widely applied approaches include stable isotope analyses of skeletal remains and lipids preserved in pottery vessels. The use of these proxies is underpinned by extensive investigations of reference materials and experimental studies, as well as analyses of thousands of finds from prehistoric cultures around the world. Likewise, ancient DNA is delivering important levels of understanding of human, animal and plant origins and relationships, and aspects of their evolution. Beyond these a number of new proxies are in the offing, notably proteins in pottery and dental calculus, which are set to add new dimensions to palaeodietary reconstructions. Even when used alone these biomolecular proxies have achieved spectacular new levels of understanding of Neolithic cultures. This conference session will explore the future potential offered by existing and emerging new biomolecular and isotope proxies for Neolithic studies. Contributions are encouraged that present new proxies, address the validation of existing proxies and demonstrate the integration of different lines of evidence. Multi-proxy studies, and the development of “big data” and statistical approaches to explore more deeply complex phenomena underpinning the adaptation of humans, animals and plants to new environments and the living of sedentary lifestyles are especially welcomed. We are particularly interested in receiving contributions presenting new biomolecular or stable isotope proxies for environment and subsistence stressors, such those related to crop failures, zoonotic diseases and climate change/deterioration.

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Abstract
Recent debates over the appropriate explanatory models for initial domestication of plants and animals and subsequent agricultural emergence have centered on whether these developments occurred in the context (and as a consequence) of resource depression or abundance. This session would bring together researchers working in different areas of the world to explore the environmental setting of initial domestication and the subsistence strategies of societies straddling the transition from foraging to farming. While the strengths and weaknesses of contrasting models could be considered, an emphasis would be on providing an overview of the empirical evidence available for reconstructing these settings and the strategies employed within them that led to domestication, agriculture, and Neolithic emergence.

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Abstract
Pre-agricultural traditions of plant food preparation are often overlooked in archaeological and anthropological discourses portraying culinary innovations as corollaries of 'Neolithisation', particularly in the context of Southwest Asia and the Mediterranean basin. This session brings together researchers using novel, cutting-edge archaeobotanical methods to explore the deep time histories and evolution of regional hunter-gatherer plant-based subsistence strategies. Recent archaeobotanical discoveries clearly demonstrate that the plant food consumption practices of late Palaeolithic and Epipalaeolithic/Mesolithic hunter-gatherers were complex, diverse and often included multiple steps of labour-intensive processing. Such practices have long been perceived by prehistorians as the hallmarks of Neolithic food producing societies and the origin of cuisine as we understand it today. These discoveries point to a much deeper and longer ancestry of culinary practices, predating the start of agriculture by thousands of years, and open new frontiers in hunter-gatherer archaeobotany beyond reconstructing plant resource choice. More significantly, they also question long-standing paradigms about the nature of the transition from foraging to cultivation and farming, including exploring homologous developments in pre-agricultural plant management and uses in Southwest Asia and the Mediterranean basin during the Pleistocene-Holocene transition.

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Abstract
Research into past diet has usually focused on the acquisition, production, processing, and consumption of plant and animal products. Yet foodways can also include food circulation, a so-far under researched topic that is, however, imperative to providing a comprehensive insight into diet in the past.
This session will focus on food circulation in the Neolithic by considering the border between choice and dietary imperative. Food circulation is one cause of dietary diversity, and can occur in many forms ranging from commensality to trade and exchange. However, tracing food circulation pathways and dietary variability poses methodological challenges in archaeology. Various scales of analysis of dietary evidence can be used in methodological approaches, as can a range of sources (animals, plants, bioarchaeological evidence, and material culture). Evidence from Southwest Asia and Europe that touches on these issues in an archaeological and environmental context is welcome.
In particular, we want to consider the following issues: were food choices and circulation the realm of individual or community decisions and to what degree were they the result of cultural traditions? To what extent was choice driven by the availability of resources and the nutritional needs of different consumers, or by other factors such as moral imperatives encoded in nutrition—i.e., the decision of what one should and should not eat?
We welcome both studies focusing on the changes that occur along the stratigraphic sequence of a site and studies that compare between sites.

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Abstract
This session is devoted to analyzing the spread of farming and herding in different regions of the Earth. We have two main aims. The first one is to cover specific case studies, from several world areas. The second aim is to pave the ground in order to perform comparisons between different regions from several perspectives, not only in this session but also in future work. Qualitative descriptions are welcome, based both on specialized and interdisciplinary approaches. Quantitative estimations will be also addressed, for those regions where they are possible by the data available at present. Among others, quantitative estimations may refer to spread rates, the relative effects of demic and cultural diffusion, interactions between farmers/herders and hunter-gatherers, genetic clines, genomic results, linguistic inferences, etc.

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This session will cover bioarchaeological advances that can or will shed new light on the Neolithic from the perspective of natural sciences, broadly including ancient DNA from animal, plants and humans, stable and dietary isotopes, microbiome, proteomics and residue analyses. The scope of the session is multidisciplinary and covers the many regions of the world that have witnessed a transition from foraging to food producing, sedentary lifestyles, including the domestication of plants and animals.
Emphasis is placed on comparisons of data from before, during and after the transition, between foraging and farming groups, or between regions, which can identify and characterise modes of change or continuity, but also on patterns of assimilation, exchange and admixture.Cross-regional, comparative analyses of bioarchaeological evidence on Neolithic transitions, i.e., from different parts of the world, would also be highly welcome.
We invite contributions of 20 minutes (incl. discussion time) on any of the four themes, or combinations thereof:
1) The roles of human movement and cultural interaction in processes of sociocultural change during the Neolithic transitions, studied through genetic continuity vs. discontinuity through time
2) Individual mobility, kinship practices and social organization in early sedentary communities
3) The domestication of animals and plants, with particular emphasis on the tempo of domestication processes
4) Evidence from dietary isotopes and residue analyses (proteomics) that are shedding light on changing lifestyles

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Abstract
Oceans and seas cover 70% of the total earth. They played a major role in exchanges, contacts and conflicts for millennia. Archaeological data demonstrated that sea voyaging were already part of the lifeway of many people before the Neolithic transition. For the first farmers, they were involved in resources exploitation and management, they open access to new territories and they contributed to increase connectivity. Because of the absence of archaeological evidence of boats, the role of prehistorical sea voyaging has however long be under evaluated, especially for the Neolithic transition. Characterizing the use of oceans and seas is becoming a key issue in the understanding of the Neolithic transition(s). Despite the scarcity of direct observations of seafaring in archaeological remains, the most recent works allow to address this topic through a wide variety of approaches at the interface of different disciplines. In this perspective sea voyages and the Neolithic transition can be approached from several points of view: knowledge and skills involved in navigation, meteorological reconstructions and modeling of sailing trajectories or pace of dispersion. It can also be addressed by the study of territorial structuration, the transfer of plant and animal species outside of their natural range, the raw material supply strategies. Finally, in the wide range of cultural process involved in the Neolithic transition, special care should be taken to processes of cultural segmentation (break in technical and symbolic transmission) and recombination.
This session aims to bring together a large diversity of papers dealing with different and geographic and cultural contexts around the world. Interdisciplinary approaches would be greatly appreciated.

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This session aims to highlight the impact of the emergence of architecture in the Neolithic on human social behaviour, the changes in the perception of space and development of building technology. Neolithic architecture can be understood as a largescale laboratory for testing structural and spatial solutions; some of them are lasting until today; e.g. the right angle. However, no buildings codes were established; resulting in constructions built without structural safety coefficients – stretching occasionally far beyond nowadays limits. Locally available material sources defined building techniques and materials. Environmental conditions, topographical settings and social constraints influenced shape and structural designs.
In addition, recent anthropological and archaeological discussions have shown how architecture can be seen as an important form of symbolic representation, a material expression of concepts, values and social orders. The socio-cultural factor may have have played a significant role in the diversity of building techniques or the dynamics of changes (invention, convergence, diffusion, etc.). In other words, Neolithic people modified buildings to adapt them to their traditions, changing needs and diversifying activities as well as responded to climate changes and destructive events, e.g. earthquakes, flooding or fire.

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Abstract
The transition from the Paleolithic to the Neolithic brought about profound changes in human behavior and adaptations, including changes in mobility, social organization, settlement patterns, and subsistence practices. These changes are directly reflected in lithic technology, both in the development of new tools and technologies and the fundamental reorganization of technological systems. In some regions of the World this is manifested in the decline of the Paleolithic blade/microblade technologies, in the shift from the heavily curated to more expedient strategies, in the additional emphasis on prestige items (lithic caches,) etc. This session brings together presenters from around the World (Eurasia, Americas, Africa, and Australia) to review and examine the lithic technological developments that accompany the Paleolithic-Neolithic transition in their respective regions. The goals of this session are to survey the variety of patterns and perhaps identify cross-
cultural regularities during this era of significant technological transitions. Technological analysis, use-wear studies, and experimental archaeology are among the effective approaches to understanding these changes and topics for discussion in the session.

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Abstract
Various animals, ranging from fearsome carnivores, meat-providing ungulates, raptors, aquatic birds, fish, and reptiles to boneless insects, were depicted in a diverse array of Neolithic artifacts and features. At many Neolithic sites, items were crafted in the shape of animal heads or specific animal species, while burials often revealed the presence of animal bones or even complete skeletons interred alongside humans. Despite variations in geography, species preferences, and artifact types, animal imagery consistently emerges in cultural items across the Neolithic landscape. This opens new avenues for understanding intra-site as well as regional aspects of animal-based rituals and socio-symbolic complexities in animal-human interactions in the Neolithic world. This session aims to foster global discussions on the contemporary understanding of animals in Neolithic rituals and symbolism, asserting that cultural artifacts with animal imagery or scattered animal remains within ritual contexts are intrinsically linked to supernatural beliefs prevalent throughout the Neolithic world. Beyond the simplistic hunter–hunted dichotomy, the session will promote new ways of understanding the complexity and deep extent of animal–human interactions throughout the Neolithic, spanning from the 11th millennium BCE in West Asia and continuing up to the 1st millennium BCE in South Asia.

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Abstract
The early Neolithic of the Urfa Region is famous for its extraordinary imagery during the great transformation towards sedentary lifeways. Monumental architecture and a vast panoply of imagery seemed to indicate a turning point in media or even in cognition. Which role did symbolic systems play in constructing and maintaining communities during this transition? What were their predecessors and how did they develop further? Symbolic systems are of central importance for understanding structural continuities and changes in the social fabric and the dialectic relationship of communities and media in times of fundamental socio-economic transformations.
This session aims to compare changes in mediality on a worldwide scale and in a long-durée perspective, applying a transdisciplinary approach. We consider the various symbolic systems, from signs to images, from built space to burial rituals, as polyvalent, intersubjective and contextual. Contributions should focus on the reflexivity, standardisation, ubiquity and materiality of imagery, and on spatial as well as on temporal aspects of archaeological records: Which symbols were represented, how and where? Did medial systems allow participation and interaction? Which role did these media play in socialisation? Was their use private or public, egalitarian or exclusive, monumental or small, random or canonised? Were they omnipresent or accessed only during specific moments? How did symbols contribute to the creation and stabilisation of collective memories?
This session invites contributions from a wide range of disciplines, from prehistoric archaeology to social neurosciences, to share perspectives and case studies in this multidimensional approach to symbolic acts and artefacts.

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Abstract
In the past 30 years, a hitherto unknown pictorial world of the early Neolithic has become known in Urfa and the wider region.
The transition from the Palaeolithic to the Neolithic was not only associated with a fundamental change in the way of life and economy, but also with a media revolution. Life-size sculptures made of stone were an extraordinary craft, artistic and social innovation. The material, themes and size of these sculptures were inextricably linked and represented permanence, masculinity and monumentality.
In the further development of the Neolithic, images of humans, but also of certain animals, played an important role in the farming villages.
On a larger worldwide scale, the question of whether the paintings and sculptures played a role for all or only part of the peasant societies will be discussed.
The Neolithic period worldwide is not only a time in which plant and animal domestication occurred and agricultural societies represented a revolutionary break from hunter-gatherer lifeways. The question is whether the transition to the Neolithic was connected everywhere, not only in Eurasia, with a production of images that were adapted to the achievements of the new mode of production.
The aim of this session within the World Neolithic Congress is to evaluate different iconographies and their material culture aspects from Pre-Pottery and Pottery Neolithic bearing communities and evaluate the ideological aspects of art against the background of the socio-economic basis of these communities and vice-versa.

Abstract
Mortuary practices can be particularly enlightening on the evolution of behaviors during periods of transition. Along with the changes in lifeways that occurred during the Neolithic transition, a new type of bond was established between the living and the space in which the deceased left behind. The rich record of Neolithic settlements and burials in various space and time scales makes it possible to discuss the interferences between the attitudes of the societies facing death and the environmental and cultural context.
A high range of practices, covering a large timescale, from the time of the death until the process of physical and immaterial transformation of the deceased is achieved, reflects the diversity of the attitudes of the Neolithic societies facing death. Burials vary in location, architecture, shape, size, type, number of dead buried, position and orientation of the dead, grave goods…. Specific treatments, that might be performed during or after the body deposit, or even the absence of burial have also been documented (e.g. manipulations, plastering the skull, cannibalism).
This session aims to bring together scholars working on Neolithic mortuary practices in different geographical locations and in different timeframes to understand the diversity of the attitudes of the societies facing death at the local, regional, and interregional scales and to discuss their evolution through time. Presentations will focus on regional or micro-regional syntheses, interregional comparisons, diachronic studies discussing the evolution and/or diversification of practices through time and integrative interpretations. A large place will be given to discussion.
Regional Neolitihic
Southwest Asia and Anatolia

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Over the past decade the study of the past has been increasingly influenced by network thinking, a period in which archaeological research has seen a sharp increase in the use of network concepts and formal applications across different scales and methodologies. Network methods offer flexible and effective concepts and statistical tools for describing, investigating and analyzing how entities relate to other entities within complex and integrated structures. The flexibility of network methods is manifested in the wide range of approaches that have been applied to archaeological data that span from studies drawing on physics and complexity theory to others inspired by sociology or by Actor Network Theory (ANT), assemblage and entanglement theory.
Recent studies have revealed the Neolithic transition as a protracted and multi-centered process defined by a diverse landscape of social and subsistence strategies across Southwest Asia. Within this context, networks have been increasingly used as both conceptual devices and formal applications to model relations at different scales using diverse datasets. This workshop provides a venue for showcasing new research that applies network methods to the study of the Neolithic transition and for discussing how network representations and models can be of help in disentangling the way the Neolithization process developed in Southwest Asia and beyond.

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Abstract
The decisive shift made by the Near Eastern societies towards a fully developed Neolithic way of life (the so-called Second Neolithic Revolution) occurred during the 7th millennium cal. BC. This pivotal period is characterized by deep economic (eg. emergence of pottery, development of pastoralism), social (eg. emergence of villages structured in neighborhoods) and symbolic (eg. scarcity of burials, increase of figurines) changes. However, this major turning point in the history of Near Eastern communities remains poorly understood due to the fragmentation of research in terms of chronological periods (Pre-Pottery Neolithic vs Pottery Neolithic), geographical areas (Northern vs Southern Levant, Upper vs Lower Mesopotamia, etc.) and disciplines (physical anthropology, archaeozoology and archaeobotany, pottery and flint studies, etc.). This session questions the paces (When?), the causes (Why?) and the processes (How?) of the various changes that led to the consolidation of the Neolithic way of life during the 7th millennium cal. BC. in the different regions of the Near East. We would like to invite various scholars who have studied this historical transition from the thorough analysis of the multiple artefacts (stone and ceramic vessels; lithic tools; stone and clay figurines) and ecofacts (faunal and botanical remains; human bones) found at major stratified sites in the region (Mesopotamia, Levant and Anatolia). We will favor case studies comparing several categories of prehistoric remains or Neolithic villages.

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Abstract
For a long time, archaeologists and anthropologists have studied the perception of death in the Neolithic Near East populations with very different types of evidence. Among the striking results observed in these studies is that rituals related to death show similarities in communities that seem to have adopted the new lifestyle, but also have many differences. It can be estimated that the intra-regional and inter-regional evaluations of the similarities and differences observed in death practices are useful in understanding the worldview and social structures of the Neolithic people, as well as in discussing the relations between settlements in different geographies. In addition, the use of pigments observed in funerary practices, the diversity in terms of different burial types and grave goods continue to be important issues worth examining, while the examinations made in the settlements show that people lived with their dead in most Neolithic settlements and their remains were used in the rituals of the living. Post-burial interventions (secondary burial practices, dismemberment) or plastered skulls seem to emphasize the functionality of rituals related to death in maintaining order in these communities, dealing with the dead and their remains, or that rituals related to death are deeply involved in life. In addition to all these, bioarchaeological information about Neolithic human societies reveals important lines of adaptation to the natural environment and social transformation. Therefore, it would be appropriate to include the results of the bioarchaeological research on lifestyles in our session. In this context, the main purposes of this session are to showcase the local characteristics of the practices, and to examine the evidence of rituals related to death as a tool of socio-cultural transformation in these societies, along with other bio-cultural adaptations that generate the new lifestyle.

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Abstract
Archaeological study of the Neolithic of Central Anatolia started seriously in the 1950s with pioneers from the British Institute of Archaeology. After 60 years of intensive research, especially at Çatalhöyük, Aşıklı and Can Hasan, it became clear that the region had a far-reaching impact on both Near Eastern and Anatolian archaeology. The early years of the Mellaart era yielded spectacular discoveries that have yet to be surpassed, as the iconic Fat Lady figurines, paintings, and reliefs on the walls of elaborate shrines showed a different and more developed phase of the Neolithic universe and triggered the development of different theories pertaining to egalitarian and urban society. The scope of Çatalhöyük Research Project resulted in a better understanding of the settlement's spatial extent and changes over time, as interpreted in social and regional terms.
On the other hand, the first real attempt at discussing the Central Anatolian Neolithic started only with the CANeW (Central Anatolian e-Workshop) project. The 2001 meeting allowed the results of previous research to be summarized and Central Anatolia to be placed in the context of Neolithic lifeways on a pan-regional scale. As it has now been more than 20 years since this meeting was held, there is a need for a new synthesis that takes into consideration both the work carried out during this period and changes in the domain of archaeological praxis. How has it progressed with intensive excavations of Boncuklu, Çatalhöyük, and Cappadocian sites, primarily Aşıklı Höyük, taking into account a variety of new discoveries, the use of innovative methods and techniques, and an open access policy that makes the data available to the public? How far has the Çatalhöyük and Boncuklu Research Projects influenced our understanding of the Anatolian Neolithic in the "grand picture" of cultural history between East and West? The session is also aimed at presenting current work at Neolithic and Early Chalcolithic sites, as evidenced by new excavations (Canhasan, Gökhöyük) and many intensive surveys over the last 10 years.

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Abstract
The foothills of the Eastern Taurus, including the Upper Euphrates and Tigris basins, contain some of the earliest and best-known habitation sites associated with the beginning of cultivation and herding in Southwest Asia. Since the mid twentieth century, archaeological fieldwork has revealed several late Epipalaeolithic and early aceramic Neolithic habitation sites dating from the 11th to the 9th millennia cal BC. Currently the region is witnessing a resurgence of intensive large-scale fieldwork in the context of the Tas Tepeler project, focused in the Urfa region, alongside ongoing projects in South-Eastern Anatolia generating increasing evidence for a higher density and diversity of settlement than previously thought. Despite some local differences, the available data suggest the existence of societies from the very beginning that were well organized and had a complex social life. The aim of this session is to query old and emerging data from different perspectives including settlement organization, the development of architecture, new technologies, the relationship of sites to the changing landscape and climate, plant and animal resource exploitation and management, and regional networks and symbolic expression, in order to explore the environmental, economic and socio-cultural dynamics that framed the motivation for the transition to settled life. Comparative perspectives with neighbouring regions including the Levant and northwest Zagros, will also contribute novel insights to our understanding of the diversity of the Neolithization process across Southwest Asia.

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Abstract
The Neolithic in various regions of the world (Western Asia, Central Europe) has been associated with one of the first periods of human history where the greatest abundance of archaeological records with evidence of interpersonal violence took place.
During the Early Neolithic (so-called Pre-Pottery, PPN A and B) Period of Southeastern Turkey, c. 9500-7000 BC, a series of buildings associated with the idea of central or communal sanctuaries appeared.
The transition from Aceramic Neolithic (PPN) A to B in many regions of the Near East entails evident changes in the archaeological record on material culture; and there is evidence of the existence of the changes due partially to some conflict.
From the advanced phase of the Early Neolithic (PPNB) the presence of human remains coupled with the idea of interpersonal violence began to abound (eg. beheadings, sealing the ritual buildings of Neolithic Göbekli Tepe final phase with chopped human bones), a type of presence that already was listed in earlier phase (PPNA) locations at the Levant (such as Jerico in the Jordan Valley) or the use of stone mace-head in burials at Kortik Tepe (Eastern Turkey).
These desecrations of the human body seem not only characteristic of the pre-pottery phase of the Neolithic of the Levant or eastern-central Turkey, since in later phases of the Neolithic of Western Asia (as example, the Halaf culture) reliable evidence has been found not only of conflicts, but of consumption of human remains (Domuz Tepe, Eastern Turkey).
In addition, the existence of lithic materials typical of the eastern area (for example, arrowheads from the cultures of the Israel-Jordan area) associated with the area of the Göbeklitepe buildings is supplementary evidence regarding this “conflict” issue.
Such discoveries, made gradually in the last decades of the research on the Neolithic of the region, put into question a new reinterpretation of some aspects and mentality of the final phase of Prehistory regarding the human violence.

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Abstract
The last decades archaeological investigations on the Iranian Plateau have revealed the importance of this region in the emergence and spread of the Neolithic economies. The eastern part of the Fertile crescent has long been considered at the margins of the Neolithic dynamics. Recent excavations in the Zagros and in the eastern parts of the Central Plateau have brought into light several 9th to 7th millennium sites with massive bioarcheological remains (faunal and botanical) that allow us to draw a whole new picture of the formation of the Neolithic way of life on this large territory. In this session we expect talks on Archaeobotany, Archaeozoology, Hard animal Material analysis (bones and shell), Geometric Morphometrics, Molecular analyses (lipid residues analysis on pottery, genomics and proteomics).

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Abstract
Since the 1940-50s, the Neolithic period in Iran has been sporadically explored by a number of archaeologists. Following the pioneering work by R. Braidwood in the central Zagros in 1959-60, attention was given to question-oriented investigations, especially on the onset of domestication and sedentary life. Subsequent political instabilities put research in hiatus for about three decades. This severely limited our understanding of Iran’s Neolithic in comparison to other regions of Western Asia. In the last two decades, however, not only have some previously excavated sites or collections been re-evaluated, but new archaeological activities have also been undertaken. As recently suggested by aDNA data, an important approach to better understand the emergence and spread of the Neolithic lifestyle on the Iranian plateau is the inter-regional connections between the western and central parts of Asia. Current evidence points to a distinct pattern of Neolithic eco-cultural zones that interacted intensively with their
neighbors via networks through which ideas, raw materials or commodities circulated and were transported. However, little is known about the possible impact of climatic or demographic factors on the development of the Neolithic lifestyle throughout Iran. Moreover, it remains unclear to what extent the secondary centers/learning or adoptive zones were influenced by the primary/formative ones.
With the main goal of addressing the above issues, this session aims to bring together researchers to present the latest available data on the emergence and development of Neolithic lifeways in Iran, a region that encompasses a mosaic of diverse Neolithic cultures but is still only
vaguely known. It is expected that the session can contribute to our better understanding of the extent to which Neolithic societies were in contact throughout the Iranian plateau and its neighbors, and how Neolithic lifeways are most likely to have evolved across this vast region linking the western parts of Asia with the central parts.

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Abstract
Recent Neolithic research in the Southern Levant has provided less spectacular results than that of the more northerly regions. This said, the picture of local Neolithisation is much more complex and thought-provoking than previously assumed. Interestingly, the findings provide new insights into the processes that modified and shaped the transition from ephemeral, extractive life-ways into a permanent, productive mode of existence. Updated excavation and research methodologies enable charting the ways and means human groups tackled the challenges involved in that transformation as numerous intensive field projects, conducted in various regions of the Southern Levant considerably modify previous comprehension of Neolithic processes in the area. It appears that the initiation of such processes extend much deeper in time than was assumed a few decades ago. What was considered as strictly new, Neolithic, phenomena, can be now observed not only in the Late Epipalaeolithic Natufian but also in earlier Epipalaeolithic archaeological entities. There is on-going debate whether, and to what degree, human societies consciously promoted the developments that finally rendered the ‘Neolithic worldview”. Moreover, it seems that it was truly a “bumpy ride to village life”; we observe significant variability in the intensity and tempo of evolving events, differences stemming from both the inner, social realm of the communities partaking in the Neolithic transformation, as well as the external, environmental ‘envelope’ that defined the ecological conditions enabling or restricting the processes involved.

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Abstract
The large deserts and desertic steppes of the Levant have always been perceived as marginal environments within the ‘Neolithic world’ – not only ecologically, but by extension also economically, socially, and culturally. However, marginality is not dictated by the abundance or scarcity of water: the southern Levantine ‘Desert Belt’, for example, running from the Sinai Peninsula in the west, through the Negev desert, to the Jordanian Badia in the east, plays a central role in the story of the Neolithic period. Archaeological research has already shown the persistent occupation of these regions from the Late Epipaleolithic to the end of the pottery Neolithic, despite the arid and hyper-arid conditions indicated by paleo-environmental reconstructions. What were the economic and settlemental modi operandi that enabled these populations not only to survive, but to flourish in these harsh conditions?
Moreover, keeping a more mobile way of life, the populations of the arid regions were crucial actors, connecting the various, dispersed agricultural societies in the Mediterranean zones, transmitting commodities, but not less importantly, ideas. Located in the center of the wider, Saharo-Arabian desert belt, these arid regions, must have also had a role as a connecting node within the larger, supra-regional transmission systems.
This session supports an inter-regional approach, aiming to bring together research from different arid regions within Eurasia and Africa, to promote a discussion of the similarities as well as the variability apparent in the archaeological record, putting the so-called ‘marginal’ in the center, with a more synthetic, wider viewpoint.

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Abstract
Dramatic changes in cereal nutrition occurred in the southern Levant during the late Epipaleolithic/PPNA transition. While at first, the Natufians invented a complex rock-cut agrotechnology system (included threshing floor, mortars, and querns, Eitam et al. 2015), enabling the production of a significant amount of initial wild-barley flatbreads and various cereal meals.
However, the following PPNA communities seem to "retreat" to a random Upper Palaeolithic consumption of processed wild cereal but in mass production of grots (using variations of cupmarks implements). The large emerging communities of early Neolithic Anatolia seem to rely mainly on wild cereal groats diet (using similar ground stones and numerous rock-cut basins) vs. baked cereal food.
Our session presents the evidence of these changes in food consumption in the southern Levant, while showing a short video film. A discussion of the similarities and differences between the Levantine and the Anatolian late Epipaleolithic/PPNA stone implements and diets, their reasons, and food's economic, social, and spiritual consequence related to the southwest Asian proto-agricultural cultures and beyond.
Southeast Europe / Europe and Eastern Europe

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Abstract
The session will focus on archaeological, archaeogenetic, biomolecular, demographic, climatic, and paleoeconomic regional palimpsests. In addition to the processes of transition to farming, artefact assemblages and chronological trajectories, symbolism and social practices, the concepts of the Neolithic package, demic diffusion, migration, gene-culture coevolution, Neolithic demographic transition, and the agricultural frontier will be discussed.

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Abstract
The Circum-Aegean world is at the same time part of the Mediterranean and separated from it by large islands. This interactive space that formed around the Aegean Sea offered many advantages to seafaring peoples since Mesolithic times or even before: a well-connected and authentic place where not only people and materials, but, above all, ideas circulated rapidly.
Since the Mesolithic, and especially with the Neolithic way of life, interactions between its eastern and western parts resulted in a material and immaterial culture distinguishable from the surrounding areas. Nevertheless, the Circum-Aegean is far from being a uniform space, since there are numerous differences traceable between the various regions, such as the islands, the Anatolian coast and the Greek mainland. Through new research carried out in recent years in especially in the eastern Aegean area (in Anatolia) but also in the west (in Macedonia and Thessaly), another aspect has become even clearer: the possibility of defining inside the broader regions local styles in pottery production and material culture.
In this session, we aim to discuss both the beginnings of the Neolithic way of life against the background of the Mesolithic, as well as the subsequent transformations culminating in the early/mid sixth millennium BC. Special attention shall be given to the internal dynamics within the Aegean and the exchange with the surrounding areas: on the Anatolian side with the Marmara region up to the Bosporus in the north and with the Lake District down to the Mediterranean coast in the south; on the European side via river systems with the north and northwest.
The session welcomes contributions on material culture, chronology and terminology, various aspects of regional cultures and interregional networks. As it is not possible to adequately study the Circum-Aegean Neolithic without interdisciplinary approaches, we explicitly welcome presentations on environmental aspects, archaeometry and bioarchaeology. In this way, we aim to highlight the originality of Aegean Neolithic societies in their various aspects.

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Abstract
The extremely important role of Anatolia in the process of the Neolithisation is highlighted by recent discoveries and current research, as well as the important role of the Balkans in the spread of Neolithic achievements further across Europe. The mutual connections of these two regions, which were key to the process of the Neolithization and reshaped their worlds at that time, have been poorly researched until now. With this session, we want to open the possibility for young and senior scholars who have dealt with (western) Anatolia, the Aegean and/or the Balkans, to present their new data and theories about characterization, differences and similarities during the formation and establishing of the Neolithic. We believe that looking at new data and models on a site-based, regional and supra-regional level offers new insights into the diversity and complexity of the Neolithisation. All social, cultural, anthropological and economic aspects as well as their broader ecological contextualization are welcome to discuss for example the built environment, diet, funeral customs, production, technologies and innovations to contribute to a better understanding if or how these regions were connected in the early to middle Holocene. This session aims to bring together experts and young researchers of (western) Anatolia, the Aegean and the Balkans to discuss this key zone and its transformation during the Neolithisation within the ‘world Neolithic context’.

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Abstract
Monuments, especially megaliths shape huge regions of European landscape, even today, when the majority have been destroyed. The reconstructed number of monumental buildings in the whole area is estimated to several tens of thousands. In many European regions the increase in monuments is contemporary with first enclosures, increased human economic impact on the environment, extended external relations, and of a distinct increase in elaboration and diversity of material culture. In many regions a first boom in megalithic monumentality is followed by a second boom in individual burial mounds during the beginning of the third millennium BCE.
Social and ideological developments connected to these formal changes are visible in the cultural landscape. In order to link observations to models of social change, to an understanding of ideological developments and to combine those topics to the physical background, the climate, environment and landscape developments, different case studies are already available with systematic data sampling, the integration of all data sources available and syntheses that account for different spatial scales and have a proper temporal resolution: important social, environmental and cultural transformations within the European Neolithic become visible.
The session aims at linking individual case studies on these socio-environmental transformations with general contributions on early monumental architecture, social and environmental changes and the creation of the earliest cultural landscapes of Europe.

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Abstract
Interdisciplinary bioarchaeological research on human and faunal remains has provided a wealth of information on the lifeways of peoples inhabiting the Iberian Peninsula during the Neolithic and Chalcolithic. The shift from a predominately foraging to an agropastoral lifestyle during the Neolithic was a dynamic and heterogeneous biocultural process. Likewise, the Late Neolithic-Chalcolithic transition is marked by changes in human and animal mobility, long-distance exchange, settlement structure, and labor, among other topics. However, these changes are not necessarily uniform in space or time and are, in part, reactions to the specificities of regional climatic, geographic, and ecological settings they occurred in.
This session will address the reconstruction of human lifeways in the Neolithic from the perspective of recent methodological advances and interdisciplinary approaches to bioarchaeology (sensu lato). We will present and discuss in relation to how they can facilitate more nuanced interpretations through high-resolution data and interdisciplinary approaches to population dynamics, subsistence strategies, resource management, mobility, and local and regional ecological conditions of the Iberian Peninsula. Contributions emphasizing biological anthropology, zooarchaeology, paleobotany, isotopic analysis, dental macro/microwear, dental calculus, coprolites, paleoproteomics, and ancient DNA of human and faunal remains from Neolithic Iberian contexts are particularly welcomed.
We aim to promote discussions regarding the lifeways of Iberian Neolithic and Chalcolithic peoples from the diverse environments and ecological contexts of the Iberian Peninsula. Additionally, we hope to debate possible factors that may have stimulated the dynamic changes in human behavior around the Neolithic-Chalcolithic transition from a biocultural point of view.
Mediterranean

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Abstract
Myths about great floods are known from ancient cultures (e.g., Noah’s Ark, the Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh, and Plato's Atlantis). In the nineteenth century, scientists realized that the equilibrium of water on earth involves cycles of ice ages (glacial periods) with associated fluctuations in sea level ranging from a drop of -120m during a glacial period and a high sea level of up to +10m during an interglacial period. Thus, there is potential in finding
inundated settlements on the sea bottom. Until recently scholars had limited access to submerged prehistoric remains, but recent decades have seen a turning point in research possibilities. Both natural and human-induced erosion processes have facilitated the exposure of sites, enabling their discovery. Developments in technology have made it possible to develop a methodology for detecting, documenting and studying these
submerged prehistoric sites.
Hundreds of sites are known in the Black Sea, the Sea of Marmara, the North Sea, the Baltic Sea, and in the Mediterranean Sea ̶ where long term research has been undertaken. For example, on the submerged prehistoric sites of Işıldaktepealti (Dardanelle-Çanakkale) in Turkey and Atlit-Yam in Israel, while many others await discovery and study.
The discipline of submerged prehistory has become an essential part of underwater archaeology. It can fill gaps in knowledge and add another dimension to the research of prehistory. This session aims at presenting and discussing the chronological and cultural settings of prehistoric sites, especially dating to the Neolithic period, discovered on the sea bottom, clarifying the relationship between coastal cultures and the sea and the
contribution of marine resources to their subsistence, as well as their resilience and adaptation to the changing coastal environment.
Caucasia

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Abstract
The period between 13-8 ka BP (uncal) in the Northern Black Sea area, i.e., the steppe zone of Ukraine, the Mountainous Crimea, the Central and the Southern Caucasus, witnessed emergence of techno-typological features characteristic of the Epipaleolithic and Neolithic in the Fertile Crescent. This phenomenon includes, e.g., introduction of microburin technique, appearance of geometric microliths and pressure flaking during the Final Pleistocene and Navyform or bipolar technology of blades removal at the end of Preboreal.
The session will be dedicated to attempts to explain the appearance of these features, in particular, whether they can be linked to migrations, cultural/social connections with the population inhabiting the Fertile Crescent, or, alternatively, resulted of convergent development. In order to investigate these possibilities the materials representing relevant cultural entities, i.e., Shankobian, Taubodrakian, Kukrekian, Crimean Swiderian, Murzakkobian, Kobuletian, Darkvetian, Traletian will be presented and discussed. Investigation of that issue, in particular, the possible existence of long lasting cultural networks connecting the Fertile Crescent and the Northern Black Sea area is of importance for reconstructing transition to Neolithic and productive economy in the latter.

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Abstract
In 2023, it is proposed to hold a session on the Caucasian Neolithic within the framework of the World Neolithic Congress in Turkey. The reason for this is the joint archaeological investigations done in the recent 10 years at the archeological complexes of the Neolithic period in the South Caucasus by local and foreign researchers, and as a result, a lot of new information was obtained. In the Caucasus, small conferences have been organized in several countries related to archaeological research, mainly in the South Caucasus. A large number of scientific articles and even monographs have been published in Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia related to the scientific information obtained by archaeologists.
Thus, at the World Neolithic Congress, the emergence of the pre-pottery Neolithic at the territory of the Caucasus in the 7th millennium BC and the main genetic roots and influence of the late pottery Neolithic which was still on progress in the 6th millennium BC are among the most relevant topics on the problem of Neolithic cultures. The role of Eastern Anatolia in the formation of the Neolithic cultures of the Caucasus and the opposite influence of the South Caucasus on Anatolia are also important part of the topic discussed here.
Considering all this, joint archaeological investigations by archaeologists from Russia, Azerbaijan, Georgia and Armenia and other foreign specialists working with local scientists in these countries will be included in the session on the topic of the Caucasian Neolithic. The mutual comparison with the Neolithic cultures of Anatolia through the issues of the Neolithic cultures of the South Caucasus, distinguished by its local characteristics, will be the subject of discussion.

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Abstract
During 2010-2017, The Karabakh Neolithic-Eneolithic Expedition, in the Karabakh Plain, has carried out archeological excavations about 3600 sq km. area and as a result more than 300 archeological monuments were registered.
In particular, we would like to note that 156 of these registered sites are the settlements of early farmer-breeder tribes.
According to the settlement topography in the Neolithic period, the Karabakh Plain can be compared only to Anatolia, Iran, and Mesopotamia. For comparison, I would like to note that the existing Neolithic sites in the Karabakh Plain are at least 2 times larger than the coeval sites known throughout the South Caucasus.
The results of archeological researches at the sites belonging to the early farmer-breeder culture in the Karabakh Plain allow us to say that this region was a center of local Neolithic culture in the South Caucasus in the 6 th millennium BC. The progressive traditions transmitted from the south to north or vice versa have caused the formation of a new socio-cultural area - an early sedentary culture of Karabakh in the Southern Caucasus Neolithic. Architectural features, technical and technological differences observed in ceramic production make it possible to distinguish Karabakh Neolithic succesors from other local Neolithic cultures of the Caucasus.
Eurasia, Central and East Asia

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Abstract
The report is devoted to the problems of neolithization of the Eastern European forest-steppe and the identification of signs of a new period. The problems of the chronology of the isolated cultures and their genesis will be touched upon.

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Abstract
Vast areas of the both sides of the Urals with different ecotones were populated by foraging communities that sustained their way of life for several millennia. The instability of ecological niches due to climatic and/or anthropogenic factors and the variability of biodiversity may have forced societies to change their adaptation mechanisms - through the development of new habitats, the adoption of innovation, the formation of new social and economic systems and networks. Crucial changes of the 7th- 6th mill calBC within these hunter-gatherer societies are marked by settlement of larger areas, appearance of ceramics which became of a wide use in the whole hunter-gatherer world, increase of sedentism, changes in foraging strategies, and new settlement systems manifesting all a new way of life. The asynchronous appearance of these changes in different societies may have been due to their rate of acceptance of innovations, the speed of the process, the way how they were transferred. The new ‘Neolithic’ networks established might have been limited both by natural and, possibly, cultural borders. The session aims to show how local foraging groups reacted to the new reality, accepted and adapted to it or not. We are encouraging papers showing changes occurred comparing to the preceding Mesolithic time, the speed of these processes; the innovations emerged, whether these processes were triggered by global and local paleoclimatic changes through archaeological studies and implication of natural scientific methods.

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Abstract
Features of the spiritual culture of the population of the Lower Kama region in the Neolithic-Eneolithic era.
Based on the obtained archaeological data within the Lower Kama region, a description is given of the main features of the spiritual culture that became widespread among the population of the territory under consideration in the Neolithic-Eneolithic era. One of the sources for considering the spiritual culture of the Neolithic and Eneolithic eras are art objects, which will be the focus of this report.

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Abstract
Central Asia has been, throughout a large part of human history, a primary conduit for the diffusion for cultural elements, technological innovations, and genes. Over the past few years, human ancient genomics projects, combined with growing data from archaeobotany, zooarchaeology, and isotopic analysis are allowing archaeologists to better contextualize their archaeological sites and associated artifacts. Despite major advances in scholarship, little remains known about the Neolitization processes of the Early and Mid-Holocene and the ways they underscored or reshaped population structures and cultural repertoires across Central Asia. This session seeks to bring together new insights into the transition to the food producing economies, and mobility dynamics of Neolithic populations that inhabited diverse environmental and cultural contexts across Central Asia. This session welcomes new perspectives derived from excavations, faunal and botanical analyses, and biomolecular and genomic records, with the overall aim of building holistic explanatory frameworks that better resolve the temporality and the cultural mechanisms associated with the origin and spread of farming and herding across the core of the ancient world. Among the question that we hope to grapple with in this session are: 1) what role did wild plants and animals play in the diet prior to the advent of cultivation behaviors. 2) Can we still discuss local innovations in economy or was the Neolithization of Inner Asia part of a demic wave spreading from southwest Asia. And, 3) what are the timing and routes of dispersal for the earliest crops and cultivation practices within this vast geographic region.

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Abstract
The definition of the Neolithic Period of Asia differs from other parts of the world such as Mesopotamia and Anatolia. The Neolithic Age cultures, which continued the hunter-fisher-gatherer economy and nomadic lifestyle, are distinguished from the Mesolithic Period cultures by using pottery and some developments in the stone tool industry. Especially in Eurasian archeology, it is known that excavations belonging to the Neolithic Period were carried out in burial complexes due to these features. For this reason, cultures are mostly defined through burial traditions. On the occasion of the World Neolithic Congress, under the title of such a session, the Neolithic Period perceptions and research methods of researchers from different geographies can be recognized and evaluated.

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Abstract
That the Three Age system and the subdivisions of the lithic ages do not work outside Europe and Near East has been debated in many forums. However, beyond this easily cited trope, the age-old idea of a “Neolithic” continually raises its head within literature. We see the presence of agriculture as a way to ‘mark’ the Neolithic, the absence of microliths as a marker of change, and ceramics used to debate the validity of chronological boundaries. Nuances underlying what this meant for the lives lived by people and the diversity underlying this in different regions are often overlooked in the eagerness to ‘find’ the Neolithic. The Neolithic has in essence become an ‘archaeo-geological age’ - so stratigraphically bounded and ubiquitous we find it hard to break from its presence. Local narratives are peripheralized in favour of an all encompassing, un-nuanced and imported age. In this session we invite papers that explore diversity and break the homogeneity of ‘Neolithic’ life in Asia, moving away from mere tropes to how new lifeways were adopted, assimilated, rejected or replaced in different parts of Asia. Debates in the Neolithic of Asia (e.g.: use of aquatic resources, the adoption of pastoral and agricultural systems, domestication, changes in technology) are sought to explore the diversity of what it was ‘to have been Neolithic’. Through this session we ask: is there something about the ‘Neolithic’ as a concept and term that helps people to understand the diversity of lifeways and societies associated with it across regions within Asia?

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Abstract
Japan's Neolithic period is currently the subject of new research aimed at answering the still numerous questions about the so-called Jōmon Period (ca. 10,000 BC - ca. 1000 BC) and the origins of the archipelago's early socio-cultural structures.
The International Research Institute for Archaeology and Ethnology (IRIAE) is pursuing its research by focusing on the sea and the role it played in Japan during the early Neolithic period. This has led to the identification of the island of Tsushima (Nagasaki Prefecture) as an extremely interesting area for understanding the first relationships that the local inhabitants had with Korean communities; relationships that strongly characterised the early social, cultural, and economic development of Japan.
The land and underwater investigations that IRIAE is carrying out have focused, therefore, on the excavation of a site that is providing important data on the subject in question. This is the Ongasaki site and the stretch of sea that washes it, which, during the latest excavation campaigns, has brought
to light an important point for the processing and sorting of obsidian. This is not only allowing us to understand the typology and methods of contact by sea between the two populations, but seems to be identifying itself, together with other sites on the island, as a true Korean settlement.
Ongasaki is also characterised by the presence of an ancient freshwater course that flowed into the sea and whose estuary is now below sea level. This, together with the conformation of the areas surrounding the course, the presence of archaeological evidence of Korean origin and the discovery
of no less than five specimens of very rare monolithic anchors, make this site a valuable case study for understanding the aforementioned issues.

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Abstract
This session delves into human migrations dating back to the Neolithic period in the East Asian mainland, when ancient rice and millet farmers migrated from the core areas of early agricultural zones in Central China to various other regions, including different parts of China, Taiwan, Japan, Mainland and Island Southeast Asia, and the Pacific Islands. The session aims to present and analyze state-of-the-art evidence from archaeology, physical anthropology, genetics, and linguistics across the region.
Participants in this session will offer insights into the timing, routes, motives, processes, and adaptations of these Neolithic dispersals, which have played a significant role in shaping the contemporary landscape of East Asia and the broader Indo-Pacific region.
Africa

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Abstract
The Neolithic era is considered one of the last periods during the Holocene era, which was accompanied by many climatic changes, in which a wet environment prevailed in central Sudan, as the rich savanna environment prevailed in large parts of the northern Sudan region, and covered the regions of southern Sudan, in the periods between 1000-7000 BC the present
The Neolithic period was one of the most important stages. The choice of the place in which the Stone Age man lived was distinguished and imposed by several environmental conditions, including his presence in a high place, and also around the White and Blue Niles and the valleys of Kawadi Hor, Wadi Al-Muqaddam and other swamps.
Hence, we derive the importance of this research, which deals with environmental influences through the archaeological record, which shows this through the places of settlement.
These biological descriptions and some of the information you mentioned about the nature of this era help us a lot in understanding environmental fluctuations and their impact on the Neolithic period in Sudan.
Sudan is now an attractive land for human beings since ancient times until today, the gateway to diverse cultures. These multiple environmental and cultural conditions paved the way for Sudan to be the starting point into Africa, as it drew attention towards it from time immemorial.
In conclusion, we find that the Neolithic period is one of the most important periods in the history of Sudan.
Australia

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Abstract
The orthodox view which prevailed for most of Australia’s white history was that prior to white settlement, Indigenous Australians lived a nomadic, passive hunter-gatherer lifestyle and never adopted farming. Recently, however, some scholars have challenged this, arguing that Indigenous Australians practised forms of land management, agriculture and aquaculture for thousands of years before the European invasion. Bill Gammage's The Biggest Estate on Earth: How Aborigines made Australia, published in 2011 was the in first in-depth scholarly investigation of this topic and concluded that Indigenous Australians had complex systems of land management, which modified the landscape sufficiently to consider them our first farmers. Indigenous writer Bruce Pascoe’s Dark Emu: Black seeds, agriculture or accident? also challenged the passive hunters and gatherers stereotype arguing that in many parts of Australia Indigenous people were pursuing sedentary agricultural lifestyles at the time European arrived. Countering Pascoe’s extreme vision, whilst still challenging the orthodox stereotype, the most recent synthesis of the evidence in Farmers or Hunter-gatherers? by Peter Sutton and Keryn Walshe argues that Pascoe has fallen into the trap of elevating agriculture over hunting and gathering. These authors provide extensive evidence to support their argument that classical Aboriginal society was a hunter-gatherer one, one whose methods were as complex and sophisticated as traditional European farming methods, but different. This session will focus not so much on the debate as on case studies investigating Indigenous Australian landscape, plant and aqua management.

P: PAPER / POSTER: RECENT FINDS, RECENT RECOVERIES

Site-based or recent recoveries group will be paper presentations of 20-minutes and/or posters.
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