Dr Beatrijs de Groot (PhD)

Teaching Fellow in European Archaeology


I am a Teaching Fellow in European Archaeology at the School of History, Classics and Archaeology of the University of Edinburgh.

I obtained my undergraduate and Research MA degree from the Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University, focusing on Mediterranean and Near Eastern Archaeology and specialising in ceramic analysis. I undertook my PhD at the UCL Institute of Archaeology as part of a Marie Curie-funded multi-disciplinary project entitled ‘Bridging the European and Anatolian Neolithic’. After my PhD I worked in contract archaeology in London and as assistant curator of the Stonehenge touring exhibition, with Mike Parker Pearson as lead curator. In 2019 I obtained funding from the Leverhulme Trust for an Early Career Fellowship develop a project entitled ‘Economies of innovation: tracing the potter’s wheel in Iron Age Southern Europe’.

I have a broad interest in theoretical and methodological approaches to studying long-term technological change, mobility, globalisation and trajectories towards mass production. I specialise in ceramic analysis and spatial visualisations of culture change processes, working predominantly on Mediterranean Later Prehistory but also cross-contextually on topics such as Ottoman ceramics, Iron Age southern Germany and Scottish Later Prehistory. 


MSc (Research): Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University

PhD (UCL Institute of Archaeology)

Undergraduate teaching

Course organiser:

  • Archaeology 1B (ARCA08005) 
  • Co-organiser: Archaeology 1A (ARCA08004)
  • Archaeomaterials analysis (ARCA10102)
  • The Archaeology of Technology: from prehistory to the present (ARCA10094) 2022/23

Postgraduate teaching

Programme Director for MSc Archaeology/Mediterranean Archaeology/European Archaeology

Course organiser:

  • Research sources and strategies in Archaeology/Bioarchaeology (PGHC11475)
  • Archaeomaterials analysis (PGHC11596)
  • The Archaeology of Technology: from prehistory to the present (online) (PGHC11547) 2022/23
  • Co-organiser for The Origins of Agriculture: Reconsidering the Neolithic (Online: PGHC11511) 2021/22

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Areas of interest for supervision

I am open to supervising students on projects relating to archaeological ceramic analysis, technology and technological change, material culture analysis, Material Science, European and Mediterranean Neolithic, Mediterranean Iron Age, long-term culture change and evolutionary approaches in archaeology, craft production, identity, archaeology and globalisation, post-colonial approaches in archaeology, gender and technology.

Current PhD students supervised

Peter Lawson (ECA, School of Music): Brass Instruments of the Middle East and Europe: Comparative Historical Archaeology of Labrosones from the Medieval period to the Present

Past PhD students supervised



Research summary

Current research projects:

  • Co-editing the forthcoming volume: 'Archaeological approaches to mass production'
    • Collaboration with Dr Roberta Mentesana (University of Barcelona).
  • Hybrid technologies in Early Colonial Mexico: An Archaeometric Study of Ceramics from San Miguel Achiutla
    • funded by a Munro Research Grant and the Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology
    • Collaboration with Dr Jamie Forde (ECA, History of Art)
  • Conservatism and innovation in Iron Age ceramics from Castrejón de Capote (Extremadura, Spain)
    • Funded by a Munro Research Grant
    • Collaboration with Prof Manuel Fernández-Götz and Prof Luis Berrocal-Rangel (Autonoma University Madrid).
  • The many lives of Chikaba's jar: biography a Terra Lemnia jar and it's famous last owner, Spain, Incipit, CSIC.
    • Collaboration with Sirio Canos-Donnay (Incipit, CSIC Santiago de Compostela)
  • Technology of Neolithic ceramics from Tell Yunatsite (Bulgaria)
    • Collaboration with Balkan Heritage Fieldschool

Completed projects:

  • Economies of innovation: tracing the potter's wheel in Iron Age SW Europe' (2019-2023)
    • Funded by Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship 2019-081
    • This Leverhulme Trust-funded project examined the varied levels of adoption of the potter's wheel in southern Europe during the first millennium BCE. I explored the socio-economic conditions underpinning its adoption and study how the potter's wheel transformed the organisation of ceramic production and consumption patterns in the long term. I use ceramic petrography to study long-term changes in clay recipes alongside the adoption of the potter's wheel, as well as spatial statistics to examine shifts in settlement and networks before during and after this technological change. 
    • For this project I collaborated with the following projects and institutions:
      • Archaeological investigations at the oppidum of Monte Bernorio (Palencia) and El Cerrito (Teruel), IMBEAC
      • Iron Age ceramic technology at El Castru, Vigaña (Asturias, Spain), Incipit, CSIC.
      • Ceramic Technology at the Heuneburg (Baden-Württemberg, Germany), Landesamt für Denkmalpflege, Stuttgart.
      • Archaeological excavation of an Iron Age promontory fort at Peña Castiel (Luarca, Spain), Incipit, CSIC.
  • Ceramic assemblages as evidence of social interaction in Neolithic Anatolia, the Aegean, and the Balkans (PhD research project: 2012-2016)
    • Funded by Marie Curie ITN: Bridging the European and Anatolian Neolithic: Demography, Migration, and Lifestyle at the Advent of Civilization (https://cordis.europa.eu/project/id/289966)
    • This PhD research was hosted by the UCL Institute of Archaeology. It considered spatio-temporal dynamics in the similarity between Neolithic ceramic assemblages from South-East Europe and West Anatolia. I conducted a statistical study of changing relationships between sites based on shared ceramic attributes, visualising similarity patterns using network approaches and spatial statistics. I also undertook a number of petrographic studies to considered local technological processes at Neolithic founder sites (Barcin Höyük, Aktopraklik C and Dzhulyunitsa-Smardesh). The project was supervised by Prof Stephen Shennan, Dr Ulrike Sommer, Dr Michela Spataro and Dr Tim Kerig. 
    • For this project I collaborated with the following projects and institutions:
      • Barcin Höyük Excavation Project, Netherlands Institute in Turkey, Istanbul and Koc University 
      • Aktopraklik Excavations, Istanbul University

Current research interests

European and Mediterranean Prehistory, Technology and Society, Long-Term Cultural Dynamics, Ceramic Petrography, Spread of Farming, Mass Production in Archaeology

Knowledge exchange

Current project grants

Munro Research Grant (2024) : Hybrid technologies in Early Colonial Mexico: An Archaeometric Study of Ceramics from San Miguel Achiutla

Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology Research Grant (2024): Transitory technologies in early colonial Oaxaca (Mexico): an archaeometric study of ceramics from San Miguel Achiutla

Past project grants

Leverhulme Early Career Fellowship (2019-2023): Economies of Innovation: Tracing the Potter's Wheel in Iron Age SW Europe

FP7 People Marie Curie Actions PhD funding (2012-2016): Ceramic assemblages as evidence of social interaction in Early Neolithic Anatolia, the Aegean and the Balkans

Invited speaker

Producing for the city: urbanism and technological change in Iron Age Europe. Varieties of Urbanism, Settlement and Climate Change workshop, HCA, Edinburgh 2023

Mass production and the spread of ceramic workshops in Iron Age Iberia: an archaeometric perspective. HCA Archaeology Seminar Series 2022

What makes a workshop? Ceramic production in Late Bronze Age and Iron Age Iberia. EAA annual meeting, Budapest 2022

Tracing the Potter’s wheel in Iron Age SW Europe. Archaeology seminars, Bournemouth University 2022

Container revolutions: Tracing the Potter’s wheel in the Iron Age western Mediterranean. Capita Selecta Seminar, Rijksuniversiteit Groningen (online) 2022

Shaping Societies: the spread of the potter’s wheel in the western Mediterranean (1000-1 BCE). MaVis Seminar, Durham University, Department of Archaeology 2021

Style below the surface: technological variation in ceramic surface treatments in Neolithic SE Europe and W Anatolia, EAA annual meeting (online) 2021

The spread of the potter’s wheel in Southern Europe: a case study from Iron Age NW Iberia. Research Talks Programme of the Institute of Heritage Sciences (Incipit) of the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC), Santiago de Compostela. 2019

Conformity and divergence: technological traditions in the first ceramics of NW Anatolia and SE Europe. Prehistory of Eurasia seminar. Durham University, Department of Archaeology 2018

Ceramic assemblages and the Neolithisation of SE Europe: examining similarity networks and technological change. HCA Archaeology Seminar Series 2018


Session organiser ‘Specialisation, standardisation and diversity’: re-examining the role of mass production in archaeology. Standard paper session at the European Association for Archaeology (EAA) annual meeting 2023 in Belfast (with Dr Roberta Mentesana, University of Barcelona)

Co-organiser Theoretical Archaeology Group (TAG) conference, HCA, 2022. 400+ participants

Session organiser Revolutionary Innovations? Rethinking Long-Term Technological Change. Standard Paper Session at TAG2022, HCA (with Maria de Falco, Durham University)

Co-organiser Crossdem: Cross-disciplinary Approaches to Ancient Demography conference, UCL 2019

Co-organiser Simulating the Neolithic 2-day workshop and conference, UCL 2015

Papers delivered

Technological innovations and mass production: considering the spread of the potter’s wheel. European Association for Archaeology Conference September 2023, Queens University Belfast

The many lives of Chikaba’s jar: biography of an 18th century pot from a convent in Salamanca, Spain (with Sirio Canós Donnay). Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) annual meeting 2023.

The many lives of Chikaba’s jar: biography of an 18th century pot from a convent in Salamanca, Spain (with Sirio Canós Donnay). EAA annual meeting, Budapest 2022

Standardisation and surplus production: tracing the potter’s wheel in Iron Age SW Europe. Society for American Archaeology (SAA) annual meeting, Chicago 2022

Integrating the potter’s wheel in narratives of long-term socio-economic change in the western Mediterranean. EAA annual meeting (online) 2021

Chronologies of a new mode of production: the spread of the potter’s wheel in Iron Age Iberia (1000 BC – 0 AD) Archaeological Approaches to the Study of the Potter’s Wheel (online): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WQt6vQDE-XM&t=4s

Labour and mobility in Iron Age rural landscapes: an archaeometric study of ceramics of El Castru in Vigaña (Asturias, Spain). EAA annual meeting (online) 2020

Resisting technological change: how does it work and (how) can we recognise it? TAG conference, UCL 2019

Technology and function of the first ceramics in North-West Anatolia: a case study of ceramics from Neolithic Barcın Höyük. Ceramic Petrology Group (CPG) annual meeting, UCL 2019

Ceramic assemblage similarities and the process of Neolithisation. BEAN project closing conference, Kemer, Antalya 2016

Social interactions as mechanisms for change: ceramic production and style in Neolithic Anatolia and the Balkans. Settlements, culture and population dynamics in Balkan prehistory, conference in Skopje, Macedonia 2015

Ceramic assemblages as evidence of social interaction in Neolithic Anatolia and the Balkans. EAA annual meeting, Istanbul 2014


Canos-Donnay, S., & De Groot, B. (2024). The many lives of Chikaba's jar. In C. Marini, & L. Tzortzopoulou-Gregory (Eds.), Of Things and Stories: Current Approaches to Object Biography, Medium, and Materiality (Vol. 8, pp. 51-67). (Selected Papers in Ancient Art and Architecture). Archaeological Institute of America.

Boyadzhiev, K., Boyadzhiev, Y., Haleva, V., Popova, T., García-Granero, J.J., Jovanović, M., Karastoyanova, N., Russeva, V., McIlfatrick, O., de Groot, B. and Sirakov, N., 2023. The Late Copper Age building BII-21B at Tell Yunatsite, south central Bulgaria. Studia Praehistorica, 17, pp.133-216. https://doi.org/10.53250/stprae17.133-216

de Groot, B. G., Braekmans, D., Fernández-Götz, M., Hansen, L., Stegmaier, G., & Krausse, D. (2023). Technological dynamics of Early Iron Age ceramics from the Heuneburg (SW Germany): A synthesis of 50 years of research. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 15(8), 129. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-023-01832-2

de Groot, B.G., Badreshany, K., Torres-Martínez, J.F., Fernández-Götz, M. 2023. Capturing technological crossovers between clay crafts: An archaeometric perspective on the emergence of workshop production in Late Iron Age northern Spain. PLoS ONE 18(5): e0283343. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0283343

de Groot, B.G. and A. Bloxam. 2022. Radiocarbon approaches for mapping technological change: The spread of the potter’s wheel in the Iberian Peninsula, 1000–0 BCE. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 41. 103288. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2021.103288

de Groot, B.G. 2021. Material Methods: Considering ceramic raw materials and the spread of the potter's wheel in Early Iron Age southern Iberia. IANSA (Interdisciplinaria Archaeologica) 12(2): http://iansa.eu/papers/IANSA-2021-02-groot_onlinefirst.pdf

de Groot, B.G. and D. González‐Álvarez. 2021. Autonomous but not isolated: A petrographic study of Iron Age ceramics from a ‘deep-rural’ community in Asturias (NW Iberia). Archaeometry 64(1), 100-117. https://doi.org/10.1111/arcm.12695

de Groot, B.G. 2020. The impact of population fluctuations on the spatial spread of Neolithic ceramic traditions in West Anatolia and South-East Europe. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology57. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jaa.2019.101121

de Groot, B.G. 2019. A diachronic study of networks of ceramic assemblage similarity in Neolithic western Anatolia, the Aegean and the Balkans (c. 6600-5500 BC). Archaeometry 61 (3), 600-613. https://doi.org/10.1111/arcm.12450

de Groot, B.G., Thissen, L., Özbal, R., Gerritsen, F., 2017. Clay preparation and function of the first ceramics in NW Anatolia: a case study from Neolithic Barcın Höyük. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 16, 542-552. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2017.06.028

de Groot, B.G. 2013. Hybriditeit in tijden van kolonisatie: wat greyware kan vertellen over de Phoenicische kolonisatie van het Iberisch Schiereiland. Tijdschrift voor Mediterrane Archeologie 49, 41-46.



de Groot, B.G. 2019. Clay recipes, pottery typologies, and the Neolithisation of SE Europe; a case study from Džuljunica-Smărdeš. In: Amicone, S., Quinn, P., Radivojević, M., Marić, M., Mirković, N. (Eds.), Tracing pottery making recipes in the Balkans, 6th–4th millennium BC. Archaeopress: Oxford, 54-64.



Parker Pearson, M. and de Groot, B.G. 2018. Stonehenge (exhibition catalogue). MuseumsPartner GmbH, ISBN 978-3-9504664-3-0.