2015 IRIS CACHE Fellow of Archaeology
Steve Renette is a PhD candidate at the University of Pennsylvania and Junior Fellow of the Kolb Society at the Penn Museum. He has degrees in the archaeology of Europe, the Mediterranean, and the Near East from Ghent University in Belgium and Leiden University in the Netherlands where he specialized in the early history of the ancient Near East with a focus on Iraq and Iran. He has participated in fieldwork in Belgium, Tunisia, Corsica, Syria, Azerbaijan, the United Arab Emirates, and Iraqi Kurdistan. He is also a member of the Al-Hiba Publication Project for which he has developed a ceramic typology for the Lagash region in southern Iraq.
His primary research focuses on the beginning of the Bronze Age in the Zagros region –the interface between the Mesopotamian lowlands and the Iranian highlands. He is particularly interested in the interconnectivity of the numerous valleys spread throughout the Zagros region and how regional communication patterns in this mountainous landscape shaped the rise of ethnic groups and political entities that are known from later historical sources. As case studies, he is analyzing the settlement patterns documented by the unpublished Mahi Dasht Survey Project (conducted by L. Levine of the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto) in the Kermanshah region, and he has set up an excavation project at Kani Shaie in the Bazyan Valley south of Sulaimaniyah in collaboration with colleagues of the University of Coimbra (Portugal).