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Dr Ben Russell amongst Leverhulme Prize winners

The School of History, Classics and Archaeology was delighted to learn that Dr Ben Russell has been named as a winner of a 2019 Philip Leverhulme Prize.

HCA Ben Russell
Dr Ben Russell

Dr Ben Russell, Senior Lecturer in Classical Archaeology, is one of thirty exceptional researchers announced as winners of the 2019 Philip Leverhulme Prize. Given in recognition of outstanding researchers’ work – which has already attracted international recognition and whose future career is exceptionally promising – each winner receives £100,000 which can be used over two or three years to advance their research.

It is a great honour to win a Philip Leverhulme Prize,’ Ben said. ‘Archaeology is a collaborative discipline and I am enormously grateful to the colleagues who have supported me in Edinburgh and elsewhere, and to those who I work with on projects here and overseas, including many of my students. I look forward to using this prize to further my work on Roman architecture and the exploitation of natural resources, as well as to consolidate collaborations with colleagues in Italy, Tunisia and Turkey.’

Ben’s current research focuses primarily on Roman architecture, especially the exploitation and use of materials for construction and the trade in them, and on ancient crafts more generally. Much of Ben’s previous work has focused on stone but the ‘Earthen Empire’ project (also funded by the Leverhulme Trust), which he is currently Principal Investigator on, investigates materials traditionally neglected in studies of Roman architecture, notably turf and earth. While the focus of this project is the Roman north-western provinces, the Philip Leverhulme Prize will allow him to expand the scope of this research to a range of Mediterranean contexts. 

Ben is co-director of the excavations at Aeclanum in Italy, where remarkable evidence for urban developments at the end of the western Roman Empire is being uncovered, and is joint Field Director of the excavations at Aphrodisias in Turkey. 

Everyone at the School sends their warmest congratulations on his award.

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Dr Ben Russell’s staff profile

2019 Philip Leverhulme prize winner

More on the Earthen Empire project

More on the Aeclanum excavations

More on the excavations at Aphrodisias