Integrating Point Process Models, Evolutionary Ecology and Traditional Knowledge Improves Landscape Archaeology—A Case from Southwest Madagascar

Landscape archaeology has a long history of using predictive models to improve our knowledge of extant archaeological features around the world. Important advancements in spatial statistics, however, have been slow to enter archaeological predictive modeling. Point process models (PPMs), in particular, offer a powerful solution to explicitly model both first- and second-order properties of a point pattern. Here, we use PPMs to refine a recently developed remote sensing-based predictive algorithm applied to the archaeological record of Madagascar’s southwestern coast. This initial remote sensing model resulted in an 80% true positive rate, rapidly expanding our understanding of the archaeological record of this region. Despite the model’s success rate, it yielded a substantial number (~20%) of false positive results. In this paper, we develop a series of PPMs to improve the accuracy of this model in predicting the location of archaeological deposits in southwest Madagascar. We illustrate how PPMs, traditional ecological knowledge, remote sensing, and fieldwork can be used iteratively to improve the accuracy of predictive models and enhance interpretations of the archaeological record. We use an explicit behavioral ecology theoretical framework to formulate and test hypotheses utilizing spatial modeling methods. Our modeling process can be replicated by archaeologists around the world to assist in fieldwork logistics and planning.

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Work Title Integrating Point Process Models, Evolutionary Ecology and Traditional Knowledge Improves Landscape Archaeology—A Case from Southwest Madagascar
Access
Open Access
Creators
  1. Dylan Davis
  2. Robert DiNapoli
  3. Kristina Douglass
Keyword
  1. traditional ecological knowledge
  2. human behavioral ecology
  3. Madagascar
  4. landscape
  5. GIS
  6. spatial statistics
  7. archaeology
  8. predictive modeling
  9. point process models
License Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
Work Type Article
Publisher
  1. MDPI
Publication Date 2020
Publisher Identifier (DOI)
  1. 10.3390/geosciences
Geographic Area
  1. Madagascar
  2. Africa
Related URLs
Deposited January 25, 2021

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Version 1
published

  • Created
  • Added Creator Dylan Davis
  • Added Creator Robert DiNapoli
  • Added Creator Kristina Douglass
  • Added Davis_etal_2020_Geosciences.pdf
  • Updated License Show Changes
    License
    • https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
  • Published

Version 2
published

  • Created
  • Added Summary_Résumé_English_Francais.pdf
  • Published

Version 3
published

  • Created
  • Updated Publisher Identifier (DOI), Related URLs Show Changes
    Publisher Identifier (DOI)
    • 10.3390/geosciences10080287
    • 10.3390/geosciences
    Related URLs
    • https://doi.org/10.3390/geosciences10080287
  • Published