Dr. Jeffrey Dobereiner is an anthropologist studying the role of cultural diversity in the emergence of social complexity. His archaeological research on ancient Mesoamerican societies has been designed to explore the impact of this force on the ancient Maya, and now, in the emergence of the first Olmec cities.
As a National Science Foundation Fellow at Harvard University he analyzed how culture contact changed the trajectory of the Preclassic Maya (1000 BC - AD 250). He used an NSF grant to direct four seasons of fieldwork on the Maya-Olmec frontier at Rancho Bufalo, Chiapas, Mexico, and study how local identity can strengthen in response to extra-regional influences.
Now, as the McKennan Postdoctoral Fellow at Dartmouth College, he teaches while exploring how diverse communities united their populations to form Mesoamerica's first cities. In collaboration with Dr. Rebecca Gonzalez Lauck (INAH) he started a new settlement archaeology program in 2016 to reconstruct how this cross-group collaboration impacted urban development at the Olmec capital of La Venta, Tabasco, Mexico.
Alongside this fieldwork, he is analyzing a range of museum objects with digital technologies including multi-spectral imaging, XRF provenance analysis, organic chemical analysis, and Micro-CT scanning.
In addition, Jeff has had the opportunity to collaborate with:
Proyecto Arqueológico Busilja - Chocolja
Proyecto Arqueológico Rastrojon Copan, Honduras (PARACOPAN)
Proyecto Arqueológico San Bartolo, Guatemala
Proyecto Arqueologico Ceibal-Petexbatun, Guatemala
The Tell es-Safi/Gath Archaeological Project, Israel
Taller de Cerámica de la Facultad de Ciencias Antropológicas, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán, Mexico
Prasat Laboratory of Natural Products Chemistry, CRI, Bangkok, Thailand
B.A. (2009) Brandeis University
A.M. (2012) Harvard University
PhD (2016) Harvard University