Sander Van der Leeuw

Sander Van der Leeuw
pas labex
pas Eurias

dates de séjour

22/02/2016 - 13/07/2016


Anthropologie et ethnologie

Fonction d’origine


Institution d’origine

Arizona State University (États-Unis)

pays d'origine


projet de recherche

Modelling the socio-environmental evolution of the Rhone basin (1000 BP-AD 1000)

The objective of this project is to study the coupled socio-ecological dynamics of the Rhone Valley through time, specifically focusing on how environmental changes impacted the socio-economic organization and vice-versa. We plan to do this through computa-tional modelling of the intricate and complex webs of interactions that existed in the Mediterranean across space and time. In order to keep the project feasible, we will in first instance focus on the Marseille region and its interactions with the Mediterranean Basin. We will cover the last three millennia with emphasis on the Iron Age, the Roman period, and the transition from the Medieval to the Little Ice Age periods. The project will combine differential-equation modeling of environmental changes with agent-based modelling of societal dynamics.


After teaching appointments at the universities of Leyden (1972-1976) and Amsterdam (1976-1985) in the Netherlands, Cambridge University (1985-1995) in the UK; and the University of Paris I (Pantheon-Sorbonne) (1995-2004) in France, Sander van der Leeuw is a Foundation Professor at Arizona State University and co-director of the ASU-SFI Center for Biosocial Complex Systems. In 2001, Professor van der Leeuw was appointed Secretary-General of the French Conseil National de Coordination des Sciences de l'Homme et de la Societe (National Council for the Coordination of the Humanities and Social Sciences). This was followed by an appointment as Deputy Director for Social Sciences at the CNRS (2002-2003) and at the National Institute for the Sciences of the Universe, in charge of a program similar to the Long Term Ecological Research program in the US. In 2003, he was appointed chair of the Department of Anthropology at Arizona State University in the U.S., where he became Founding Director of the School of Human Evolution and Social Change, an interdisciplinary unit based around anthropology that focuses on some of the major challenges of the 21st century, and subsequently Chair of the Consortium for Biosocial Complex Systems and Dean of the School of Sustainability. He is an external professor at the Santa Fe Institute (USA), a correspondent of the Royal Dutch Academy of Arts and Sciences and held a Chair at the Institut Universitaire de France. In 2012 he was awarded the "Champion of the Earth for Science and Innovation" prize by the United Nations Environment Program.