CSIC - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Madrid - Spain
- Levantine art records: Juan Vicent Garcia, María Cruz Berrocal
Departamento de Prehistoria, Instituto de Historia, CSIC (Department of Prehistory, Institute of History, CSIC)
The Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas -Spanish Council for Scientific Research - (CSIC, http://www.csic.es) is the Spanish national research agency. The Instituto de Historia -Institute of History - (IH) (http://www.ih.csic.es/index_4.htm) is the principal (though not the unique) devoted to the research on several historical disciplines, among them Archaeology, which is developed in the Department of Prehistory and Department of Classical Archaeology and Ancient History.
The Department of Prehistory of the IH continues the scientific tradition of its predecessor, the Instituto Español de Prehistoria -Spanish Institute of Prehistory- (IEP) of CSIC, founded in 1957 by Professor Martín Almagro Basch. In 1985 the IEP was joined together with the Centro de Estudios Históricos -Centre for Historical Studies- (renamed as Instituto de Historia since 2000) to create the current Department of Prehistory.
According to the general objectives of CSIC, the activities of the Department have been orientated to the developing of scientific resources and researching trends of interest for the Spanish scientific community in the field of Prehistoric Archaeology. Among these resources, it is worth mentioning the following:
- The journal Trabajos de Prehistoria (http://www.prehistoria. ceh.csic.es/prehistoria/tp/index.html), founded in 1960 by Professor Almagro Basch. It has been uninterruptedly published since then. At the moment it has reached the volume number 58. It is the main Spanish scientific journal on Prehistory, due to its international spreading, regularity and external evaluation system. It is published biannually since 1994. It accepts scientific papers in Spanish, French and English. It has likewise news and bibliography review sections. Its contents cover a broad scope of fields from Prehistory and Protohistory of the Iberian Peninsula, Europe and the Mediterranean area, as well as archaeological theory and methodology.
- The Library Colección de Prehistoria -Prehistory Collection-. The bibliographical resources of the Department derive both from exchange between the journal Trabajos de Prehistoria and the publications resulting from different research projects, and publications from other institutions. These stocks are used in common with those from the Library of the Museo Arqueológico Nacional -National Archaeological Museum-, thus conforming the most important archaeological library in Spain. At present it has more than 100000 volumes and 2700 periodicals.
- The Archivo Fotográfico Martín Almagro Basch -Photographical Archive Martín Almagro Basch-. It consists of several pictorial and documental collections on Prehistoric Rock Art, that were produced by the disappeared IEP. Among these collections, the most relevant is the Corpus de Pintura Rupestre Levantina -Corpus of Levantine Rupestrian Painting-, whose funds have been digitalized and published in Internet (http:///prehistoria.ceh.csic.es/AAR/menu.htm, see below).
- The Laboratorio de Arqueobotánica -Archaeobotanical Laboratory-, founded in 1978 and directed by Dr. Pilar López García. It constitutes the first reference in Spain for the field of Archaeological Palinology, and it does analyses for numerous external research projects, besides those for the Department.
- The Laboratorio de Teledetección y Proceso Digital de Imagen -Laboratory of Remote Sensing and Digital Image Process-, founded in 1994 and directed by Dr. Juan Manuel Vicent García. It devotes itself to the development of archaeological applications from several technologies related to digital images, in own projects or in collaboration with other organisms.
The research activity of the Department of Prehistory is oriented by the same principles of service to the scientific community, so that general interest trends are promoted. Specially emphasis is placed on the development of innovative methodologies. The main research lines followed by the researchers belonging to the Department are the following:
- Environmental Archaeology
- Landscape Archaeology
- Rock Art Studies
- Theory and Method in Archaeology
The development of these lines take place through the concession of different projects from public national and European notices, including the cooperation with research groups from other institutions in Spain and abroad.
The Department plays an important role also in the formation of researchers, admitting in its teams pre- and postdoctoral fellowships holders. Besides, its members maintain a continuos teaching work for several Spanish and foreign universities.
CSIC - Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas, Madrid