Resources for Fieldwork in Turkey
Compiled by Omur Harmansah in 2007
For other areas, see also Fieldwork Opportunities.
General resources on archaeological projects in Turkey
- Current Archaeological Projects in Turkey. A resource for archaeological research in Turkey. This site aims to provide up-to-date information on projects currently operating in Turkey and is revised regularly.
- Archaeological projects in Turkey which were awarded the Turkish Ministry of Culture and Tourism's permits in 2006.
- TAÇDAM: Centre for Research and Assessment of the Historic Environment at Middle East Technical University, Ankara. See esp. Ilisu and Carchemish Projects.
- American Research Institute in Turkey (ARIT) is a non-profit educational institution dedicated to promoting American and Turkish research and exchange related to Turkey in all fields of the humanities and social sciences, and especially in archaeology. They also give several fellowships for graduate students and post-doctoral research. See also their Review of Applications for Excavations and Surveys in Turkey for 2007 page. Currently ARIT reviews applications from abroad for archaeological excavations and surveys to take place in Turkey in 2007 prior to the permit process with the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, General Directorate for Cultural Heritage and Museums (or Monuments and Museums, sometimes).
- British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara. The British Institute at Ankara (BIAA) supports, facilitates, promotes and publishes British research focused on Turkey and the Black Sea littoral within the arts, humanities and social sciences, whilst maintaining a centre in Ankara focused on the archaeology of Turkey. They have a good library in Ankara on Anatolian archaeology and the institute can be a good source of survey equipment to rent if you become a member. Here is a list of ongoing and recent archaeological projects affiliated with the Institute. BIAA also grants fellowships for archaeological research in Turkey.
- Institut Francais d'Etudes Anatolienne. There is plenty of information on the French archaeological missions in Turkey in that page.
- Deutsche Archaeologische Institut Istanbul. Again you can get to German-related archaeological project information there.
- The Netherlands Historical and Archaeological Institute, Istanbul: "a non-profit making academic research institute based in Istanbul and is affiliated to the Netherlands Institute for the Near East (NINO), which is based at Leiden University in the Netherlands. They do exist, have a good library in Istanbul, but their website is defunct.
- TAY Project. Attempting to create a collaborative chronological database/inventory of archaeological sites in Turkey.
- AJA's latest report on Archaeology in Turkey. AJA 107 (2003) 71-104. British Institute of Archaeology at Ankara's publication Anatolian archaeology : reports on research conducted in Turkey available at the Rock.
- The QuarryScapes Project: conservation of ancient stone quarry landscapes in the Eastern Mediterranean.
- Tatarli Tumulus: Eine perserzeitliche bemalte Holzgrabkammer bei Kelainai- paintings on the wood from an Achaemenid tomb, by PD Dr. Lâtife Summerer of Munich University (Institut fÜr Klassische Archäologie Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München)
- Gordion Archaeological Project at Yassihoyuk, Turkey: A Phrygian city in Central Anatolia. Also see this website which is maintained by Richard C. Henrickson. Also Gordion Conservation Blog here.
- Kerkenes Dag Project: Archaeological survey and excavations of an Iron age mountain-top settlement in the East-Central Anatolian plateau. Usually open to new graduate and undergraduate students to work as volunteers.
- Euchaita/Avkat Archaeological Project, Princeton University.
- Göksu Archaeological Project: archaeological survey located in a remote area of the Taurus Mountains of southern Turkey, between the modern cities of Mut and Karaman.
- Kilise Tepe: Rescue Excavation in the Göksu Valley, Turkey. An interesting report from the site: Contextual Analysis of the Use of Space at Two Near Eastern Bronze Age Sites, Part 3: The Excavations at Kilise Tepe (1994-98) by J. N. Postgate (1998).
- Çatalhöyük Excavation. Neolithic settlement in central Turkey.
- Upper Tigris Archaeological Research Project. Excavations at Kenantepe in SE Turkey.
- Ziyarettepe Project: excavations of an Early Iron Age/Assyrian site in SE Turkey.
- Aphrodisias Project. Classical. NYU Based. Usually accepts graduate and undergraduate students if they are good draftsmen (esp. architects). See also info on the project here.
- Kinet Höyük. Excavations based at Bilkent University. Middle Bronze to Iron Age site.
- Granicus Valley Survey Project. Recording and mapping the tumuli in the Biga River Valley. Now based at the University of Pennsylvania.
- Archaeological Exploration of Sardis. Lydian site 60 miles east of Izmir. An interdisciplinary program of excavation and research jointly sponsored by the Harvard University Art Museums and Cornell University.
Participating an archaeological project in Turkey
International Symposium of Excavations, Surveys and Archaeometry in Turkey is a huge gathering of archaeologists who work in Turkey. It usually meets in a major city in Turkey during the last weekend of May. By Turkish antiquities law, all excavations, surveys and other archaeological projects are required to report at this meeting. So it is always the best place to arrange for your prosective field project.
The permit applications for all archaeological projects are submitted to the Turkish Ministry of Culture at the end of December, and all projects need to have the list of their participants by then. Therefore if you are planning to join a team in the summer, make sure to be in touch with the director of the project way before December.
Research Permit Applications
If, as a graduate student, you need to apply for a research permit,for working at any of the Turkish museums, you will need apply to the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, General Directorate for Cultural Heritage and Museums individually. The approval for such research actually comes from each local museum itself. Therefore, going and meeting the museum employees prior to your permit application will help tremendously. Here is ARIT's page on Recommended procedures for requesting a permit to carry out research in Turkey.
Financial support for fieldwork
- Brown International Scholars Program for Brown undergraduates.
Map of some of the current archaeological projects in Turkey:
Click here for a larger map (Source: AJA 107 (2003) 72: fig. 1)