At this year’s EAA there will be a session very close to my research interests: computational approaches to the Roman economy.
Be sure to submit your abstracts via the EAA website.
Deadline: 13 February 2020.
From abacus to calculus. Computational approaches to Roman Economy
The study of the Ancient economy is an interdisciplinary endeavour on the intersection of archaeology, classics and historical economy, that tries to reconcile evidence from written and material sources across a wide range of regions, with different degrees of data availability and diverse traditions of studying these sources. The ‘Roman economy’ is a concept that has many possible interpretations, and accommodates a wide range of case studies from estimating production capacities and local trade networks to Empire-wide investigations on demography, wealth distribution and trade volumes.
With the advent of ever-growing and better accessible digital datasets, increasing computer power and more sophisticated computer science approaches to data mining and modelling, the analysis of the Roman economy is now entering a new stage. We can now start to meaningfully connect disparate data sets and use formal computational modelling to explore their potential, e.g., to elucidate the mechanisms that led to the different economic trajectories in the various parts of the Empire, or to reconstruct the social and political networks that enabled economic growth.
In this session, we invite speakers to present studies of the Roman economy that have used computational modelling as a tool to bridge the gap between fragmented, disconnected data sets and interpretive frameworks. This can include but is not limited to:
– statistical modelling,
– data mining,
– agent-based modelling and simulation,
– network analysis,
– spatial modelling
– machine learning,
– or a combination of approaches.
These can be applied to any topic relevant to Roman Economy: demography, land use, trade networks, craft production, finance, administration and others. We are also welcoming more theoretically oriented papers on the role of computational modelling in historical economic studies of the Roman Empire and comparative case studies from other periods.