The second Maritime Archaeology Graduate Symposium was held in Southampton from the 29th to the 31st March 2019 and organised by HFF scholars. The Foundation awarded three bursaries for participants from the eastern Mediterranean to attend and present at the conference. Below is a report from the MAGS committee and a summary of the reports from the three bursary recipients – Marwan Osman (Egypt), Vera Noon (Lebanon) and Christiana Christodoulou (Cyprus).
This year’s Maritime Archaeology Graduate Symposium, held on March 29-31, 2019, proved to be a huge success. The event, inspired by the Honor Frost Foundation, and realised through a collaboration of HFF scholars from the Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Southampton and colleagues from the Oxford Centre for Maritime Archaeology at the University of Oxford, capitalised on last year’s momentum to give early career researchers a place to collaborate and communicate.
After a wine reception on Friday night for registration and introductions, the organising committee led sessions on a variety of maritime-related topics ranging from legislation to maritime landscapes to boat models to economic networks in the Mediterranean. Students and researchers involved in a number of fields such as architecture, archaeometry, ceramics, and archaeology presented 23 papers that sparked interesting discussion among speakers and audience. Each day was capped with workshops by the Nautical Archaeology Society, the International Journal of Nautical Archaeology, and David Mearns to guide the next generation of scholars through the complex world of publishing, promotion, as well as give examples of capacity building through education and training.
Several bursaries were awarded to Christiana Christodoulou from Cyprus, presenting on amphora distributions, Vera Noon from Lebanon, who presented research on maritime spatial planning and thoughts for future work, and Marwan Osman from Egypt, who spoke about shipbuilding techniques in ancient Egypt. BAR Publishing as well as the Nautical Archaeology Society set up stands and kindly shared advice with attendees and presenters. BAR also held a raffle with wine, chocolate, and a £50 award to three lucky winners.
All in all, the results are promising, and the primary objectives of the HFF in developing this event have been surpassed this year. Researchers from all over the world have been gathered to discuss their work with other like-minded scholars, new connections have formed to allow for collaboration across a number of countries, and honest, interesting discussions have been undertaken about maritime archaeology throughout the eastern Mediterranean. Based on the quality of these talks, we can surely hope for exciting developments in the coming years.