Underwater Excavations at Birka, Sweden 2013


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I’m excited to be involved with the underwater excavations of the harbour for the Viking town of Birka, Sweden. Birka was a thriving international trading community from the late 7th century to the 10th century AD, and has been called the first major city of Sweden. It is a UNESCO world heritage site featuring the remains of a fort structure, a town, and the largest collection of burial mounds in the country. This project is lead by the Swedish Maritime Museum diving unit, Sjohistoriska. Check out the link below for their blog to catch daily progress on the excavation.


Maritime Archaeology at the Canadian Archaeological Association’s 2012 Conference in Montreal


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I am fortunate to have been invited to present in a session on maritime archaeology at the 2012 CAA’s in Montreal. The session is running Thursday afternoon, May 17, 2012. If you’re around the conference and are interested in hearing about the many interesting projects in maritime archaeology around the country stop by. Below is my abstract for the session.


Applications of Space Syntax in Maritime Archaeology

Space syntax – a methodology developed for analyzing the relationship between spatial structure and social processes – has been applied to architectural and settlement remains at several terrestrial archaeology sites, in an effort to better understand the socio-spatial dynamics at play. Such an approach has never been applied to ship structures. This paper will describe modern applications of space syntax to the architectural analysis of buildings and homes, and discuss the potential benefits of applying this type of analysis to better understand the social dynamics aboard ships of the past.

Swanage Pier Archaeological Project 2009


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I will be presenting the results of the Swanage Pier Archaeological Project 2009, as part of the University of Calgary’s archaeology Noon Hour Lecture Series, Wednesday, April 4th, 2012, from noon to 1pm, in ES 859. Anyone interested is welcome to attend.


Located on the south coast of England, the town of Swanage has had an interesting and varied history; from mining to resort town. Central to its development was the construction of a large industrial pier. This community project, while ultimately an utter failure, shaped the culture and future of the town of Swanage. Now in an advanced state of decay the goal of the SPAP 2009 project was to collect information on the pier’s history and survey the current state of the pier for posterity. The cause of decay was also investigated, as well as potential mitigation of this decay. This presentation will address a brief history of the pier and its importance to the community. Additionally, the methodologies used by the team will be discussed with specific attention to the difficulties of conducting archaeology in a marine environment.

Islands in the Ancient Mediterranean: an qualitative analysis of island typology as a stepping stone for using islands as context for analyzing maritime archaeological material


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This is the abstract from my master’s thesis, which is available as a pdf in my ‘About Mike’ section. 


This paper explores approaches to the archaeological study of islands. As a response to recent research, the introduction and testing of new approaches to this type of study will be discussed in this study. Using current theories on the human ecology of islands to examine archaeological material directly, a new methodology and model is created. The paper focuses on the islands of Crete, Melos, and Keos, in the Aegean, in an effort to limit the number of variables (environment, climate, sea conditions, etc.) to be considered. It is hoped that this methodology and model can be used in future island study to help this area of archaeological investigation re-engage the material culture of island societies.

Maritime Archaeology Session – Chacmool Conference 2012



I am organising a maritime archaeology session for the upcoming Chacmool Archaeology Conference in Calgary, November 8th – 11th, 2012. Funding for travel is available for any presenters. If you are interested in being a part of the session please let me know. The informal deadline for abstracts is April 1, 2012, but I will be accepting late submissions until the fall. See the link below for details



Site Launch

Hi all and welcome to ‘From Sea to Sea’. The focus for this blog will be on disseminating on going research in maritime archaeology, specifically in Western Canada. If you have any interest in maritime archaeology or have projects you would like to talk about please feel free to post and get the word out.



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