SFB 1266 - TransformationsDimensionen

Biweekly Colloquium: “Uncovering the Archaeological Landscape of the Veluwe; Central Netherlands, through Remote Sensing, Data Science and Citizen Science”

09.11.2020 von 16:15 bis 17:45

Virtual meeting

Karsten Lambers Universität Leiden

Uncovering the Archaeological Landscape of the Veluwe; Central Netherlands, through Remote Sensing, Data Science and Citizen Science

This talk will provide an update on ongoing archaeological research on the Veluwe, one of the few densely forested areas in the Netherlands. While many archaeological traces are well preserved under the forest cover, they are also well hidden. In spite of decades of archaeological fieldwork by Leiden University and others, our image of the rich archaeological heritage of the Veluwe is still sketchy.

Two recently launched, interlinked research projects are currently expanding our knowledge considerably. Both approach the Veluwe from a regional perspective. In a data science project, called WODAN (Workflow for Object Detection of Archaeology in the Netherlands) we are developing a multi-class detector of archaeological objects in LiDAR data, the core of which is a Faster R-CNN (region-based convolutional neural network). This project has more than doubled the amount of known prehistoric burial mounds in the region, and has also allowed substantial progress in the study of Celtic fields and charcoal kilns. In a citizen science project, called Heritage Quest, hundreds of citizen researchers have been mapping the same three object categories in LiDAR data, and some of them are currently helping us to verify them in the field, which again expands the number of known archaeological objects considerably.

Both projects inform each other through the mutual proposal and cross-validation of potential archaeological objects. They also generate data that allow us to assess and compare the performance of experts, volunteers, and neural networks in the detection and mapping of archaeological objects.

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