Social scientists at Oxford are seeking answers to some of the world’s most important challenges. How can we tackle climate change? What needs to happen to resolve poverty? How should we respond to the economic crises? How should we fight for our human rights? Here we bring you the latest of our major discoveries in the social sciences at Oxford.
28 June 2017
Dotted across the landscape of Britain and Ireland, hillforts have been part of our story for millennia and for the first time a new online atlas launched today captures all of their locations and key details in one place.
Gary Lock wins Public Engagement Award for Citizen Science project - The Atlas of Hillforts of Britain and Ireland
28 June 2017
A project run by Professor Gary Lock has won an award in this year’s Vice-Chancellor’s Public Engagement with Research Awards, which celebrate public engagement work across the University. The announcement was made at an awards ceremony at the Oxford University Museum of Natural History on 28 June hosted by Vice-Chancellor Professor Louise Richardson.
8 June 2017
Archaeological digs in the Middle East have revealed the remains of ancient harvests that record how some of the world’s earliest cities grew and developed.
3 May 2017
A team of international scientists led by the University of Oxford has combined ancient DNA analyses with statistical modelling to pinpoint the timing of the selection for traits associated with modern chickens. They found that medieval Christians who fasted may have played a part in producing less aggressive farm birds.
2 May 2017
Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa, (EAMENA) an archaeological preservation project, will today launch public access to its online database of nearly 20,000 archaeological sites at severe risk due to conflict and other agents of destruction in the Middle East and North Africa.
9 March 2017
Oxford University has been ranked number one in the world in four subject areas in the latest QS World Rankings by Subject. The University came first in Archaeology, Geography, Anatomy and Physiology, English Language and Literature.
8 February 2017
The development of agriculture is universally believed to underpin some of the most significant advances made by humans worldwide. In New Guinea, where one of the earliest human experiments with tropical forest agriculture occurred, researchers have cast doubt on two views about the origins of agriculture.
23 January 2017
The article 'Archaeologist: the A303 is a crucial part of Stonehenge’s setting' has been published on The Conversation. It was written by Dan Hicks, Associate Professor and Curator, Pitt Rivers Museum and School of Archaeology at the University of Oxford.
18 November 2016
Out of the 8 European Research Council Starting Grants secured by the University of Oxford in 2015-2016, 5 were awarded to Early Career Researchers (ECRs) in the Social Sciences Division.
20 October 2016
Researchers have observed wild-bearded capuchin monkeys in Brazil deliberately break stones, unintentionally creating flakes that share many of the characteristics of those produced by early Stone Age hominins.
10 October 2016
Archaeologists have created a new database from the teeth of prehistoric humans found at ancient burial sites in Britain and Ireland that tell us a lot about their climate, their diet and even how far they may have travelled. In a paper, led by Dr Maura Pellegrini from the University of Oxford, researchers say that individuals in prehistoric Britain were highly mobile.
18 August 2016
Oxford University researchers say that trees which grew during intense radiation bursts in the past have 'time-markers' in their tree-rings that could help archaeologists date events from thousands of years ago. In a new paper, the authors explain how harvesting such data could revolutionise the study of ancient civilisations such as the Egyptian and Mayan worlds.
12 July 2016
New archaeological evidence suggests that Brazilian capuchins have been using stone tools to crack open cashew nuts for at least 700 years, and the new research paper asks whether human behaviour was influenced through watching the monkeys.
7 July 2016
The cultural and technological innovations of Middle Stone Age humans in Southern Africa may not be directly linked to climate, according to new research.
5 July 2016
We are delighted to announce that a total of 16 Early Career Researchers (ECRs) in the Social Sciences Division have won funding in the 2015-2016 application rounds.
9 June 2016
A new study looks into the history of stone tools used by wild macaques in coastal Thailand. It finds they have been using them for decades…and possibly thousands of years… to crack open shellfish and nuts.
7 June 2016
'Pristine' landscapes simply do not exist anywhere in the world today and, in most cases, have not existed for at least several thousand years, says a new study led by the University of Oxford.
3 June 2016
The question, ‘Where do domestic dogs come from?’, has vexed scholars for a very long time. Some argue that humans first domesticated wolves in Europe, while others claim this happened in Central Asia or China. A new paper, published in Science, suggests that all these claims may be right.
31 May 2016
Researchers have helped solve one of the enduring mysteries of the ancient world: why the inhabitants of Madagascar speak Malagasy, a language otherwise unique to Southeast Asia and the Pacific – a region located at least 6,000 km away.
18 April 2016
Emma Cunliffe, research associate at the University of Oxford, comments on Syrians risking their lives to protect their cultural heritage.