Models of Mesopotamian Landscapes

How small-scale processes contributed to the growth of early civilizations

T.J. Wilkinson, McGuire Gibson and Magnus Widell


This volume demonstrates how models can contribute to an understanding of the development of ancient Mesopotamian settlement and landscape. The models are intended to show that early settlements co-evolved in an intimate relationshA with their physical and social environments. Local rules that determined the subsistence practices of the householder then developed into more complex social mechanisms which culminated in the emergence of complex systems of settlement. Data for the models is drawn from archaeological surveys, environmental archaeology, anthropology and cuneiform texts. Although initially intended as an investigation of how agent-based models can contribute to understanding urban growth, this volume adopts a more broad-brush approach to include both 'bottom-up' and 'top-down' models as well as mathematical and qualitative methods.