From the Director

Willeke WendrichUCLA is a public university and that brings a responsibility for us who work here to be part of the public debate. Archaeology is a discipline that allows us to see both the longue durée and short-term events. Our work has the power to show the particularities of day-to-day experiences in the past. It also enables us to analyze what happens in the present within a deep historical perspective. Studying the materiality of everyday life urges us to ask ourselves how our time will be perceived in the future: what will the material reflection will be of the America that we live in today? Will future archaeologists see a dramatic widening of the wealth gap and increase in social stratification, characterized by palaces surrounded by green grassy parks with small holes in them? Will future bioarchaeologists conclude that a decline in age-at-death can be linked to a sharp deterioration of the health of large groups of the population? How will future anthropologists characterize the 21st century nation state? Read more...

About Us

The Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA is a premier research organization dedicated to the creation, dissemination, and conservation of archaeological knowledge and heritage. The Cotsen Institute is home to both the Interdepartmental Archaeology Program and the UCLA/Getty Program in Archaeological and Ethnographic Conservation. It provides a forum for innovative faculty research, graduate education, and public programs at UCLA in an effort to impact positively the academic, local and global communities. The Cotsen Institute is at the forefront of archaeological research, education, conservation and publication and is an active contributor to interdisciplinary research at UCLA.