Definitive programme

Please find here the Final Programme. The last page shows a map of the city with all venues indicated. We are looking forward to meeting you all this week!

(NB you will receive a printed copy on the day)

Last chance!

We are pleased to announce that many participants already registered for the symposium on April 19th – but, we still have a few places left; we can welcome  5 to 10 more participants.

So, if the deadline of April 1st accidentally slipped your mind, you have a very last opportunity to subscribe yourself for one day (€10, Thursday) or two (€15, Thursday, Friday). Please, mail to

Keynote Professor Howard Williams & Workshop Assignment

On Thursday the Mortuary Archaeology Today symposium will take place in Het Heerenhuis (Welcome from 9.30). There is still the possibility to register via until March 31, but places are limited! You can find the Programme & Abstracts here.

From 17.00 to 18.00 our invited speaker professor Howard Williams of the University of Chester will address us with an inspiring talk on Cremation Past and Present (see programme & abstracts). To find more information on his interests, you can visit his blog on the archaeology and heritage of death and memory.

Afterwards we will head off for drinks at the Groningen Institute of Archaeology nearby and the optional conference dinner in the city center. If you wish to attend the dinner, please let us know through before April 16th.

On Friday we have an intensive day of workshops. An introduction to this workshop can be found at the end of the Programme & Abstracts. We propose the participants take a look at the suggested literature and have a think about the attached assignment, so they can participate in the discussions (only compulsory for ARCHON-students).

During the day, the participants work on a case-study under supervision of specialists which incorporated the various aspects of mortuary studies. The goal is to think about the questions we ask of mortuary data and how we can better integrate different methods. At the end of the day people should have a better understanding of the possibilities and limitations for their own research. The specialists guiding the workshop will include Eveline Altena from Leiden University, professor Sofia Voutsaki from the University of Groningen, and professor Howard Williams.

After the workshop, we have planned an excursion to the Zuiderbegraafplaats in Groningen, a beautiful cemetery dating back to the first half of the nineteenth century.


For registration or queries please contact:

Attending fee for non-presenting attendees: 

10€ for one day;  15€ for two (lunch & drinks included)

For last minute information: 

See our facebook-event ‘MortuaryArchaeologyToday’ via


The organization of the Symposium & Workshop is in full swing!

The organization of the Mortuary Archaeology Today Symposium & Workshop is in full swing! We have received many inspiring abstracts we are currently reviewing and hope to present you a line-up in the course of February.

Signing up for the symposium and/or workshop is however still very much possible!

The deadline for signing up is March 31st and can be achieved by sending an email to
(attendance fee for non-speakers: 10 euro for 1 day, 15 euro for 2, to be paid on arrival at the event).

For participation of the workshop  we will provide some preparatory reading as well as ask the attendees to prepare a brief essay on their thoughts regarding the sessions and the way the issues relate to their own research to spark the debate! More information on the assignment will be provided to the attendees through email.

We hope to see many of you April 19th!

ps. As this is an Archon event, Dutch (archaeology) students who are a member of Archon can earn 1 or 2 ECTS by attending and submitting a report.

Call for Papers: MORTUARY ARCHAEOLOGY TODAY Approaches, methods and ethics (April 19-20, 2018, Groningen)

Archaeology has focused on the mortuary context since its inception. The earliest antiquarians took advantage of prominent burial monuments and other grave contexts in their search for curios and information about past societies. While burials tell us much about the ways in which people buried their dead, they have also been a valuable resource for reconstructing the ways in which people lived. Today, the technical advances made in the study of human remains themselves allow for more detailed study of past peoples than ever before. With that change has come an added responsibility concerning the proper handling of human remains. During this symposium, co-organised between the Universities of Groningen and Leiden, we aim to start a discussion between researchers interested in studying cultural and emotional aspects of burial practices, and those using human remains as a data source for lifestyle and population studies, to which the issue of ethical practices is crucial.

On Thursday April 19, a one day symposium open to the general academic community will be held. The day’s talks are divided into three sessions (see below) and we cordially invite you to submit a proposal for a 15-20 minute paper intended for one or more of these sessions.

The next day, a workshop will focus discussion on the results of these three sessions. The aim of the interactive workshop sessions is to engage ReMA and PhD students in critical review of mortuary archaeology today and to explore opportunities for collaborative research. For ARCHON students or others taking the workshop for ECTS, reading will be circulated beforehand.

On Friday afternoon, an excursion taking in some of Groningen’s funerary monuments is open to all participants.