The Department seems to be filling up with Chairs. Following the appointment of Terry O'Connor to a chair in Zooarchaeology in 1999, to join Martin Carver (Professor of Archaeology), Prof. Geoff Bailey will take up the new Anniversary Chair in Prehistoric Archaeology in August of this year. Prof. Don Brothwell remains as active as ever, as the recent documentaries on Discovery and Channel 5 attest, and now there is yet another one. As of the 1st of April this year they are joined by Professor Matthew Collins. Matthew has been Bizonder Hoogleraar (Professor by Special Appointment) to the endowed chair in Biomolecular Archaeology at the Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam for a five year period from 1 April 2004.
"I am really excited by this appointment" says Matthew. "Both institutes are expanding in Archaeological Science for their core strengths in Earth Sciences and Biology respectively. The VU have a very strong Earth Science program and has taken a number of bold initiatives to advance geoarchaeology in the last few years, whilst here at York our research has been boosted by the new BioArch labs and the three new appointments in prehistory this year. The link between the VU and York will provide exciting opportunities for study and research for students at both institutes."
Jane Grenville says: 'This highly prestigious appointment for Matthew reflects the fact that York must surely now be seen as a recognised leader in Biomolecular Archaeology. In developing strong links with the Biology Department, in addition to our new appointments, we have been able in a relatively short time to build a unit of international significance which will be further strengthened next year by an additional appointment.'
Henk Kars, Professor of Geoarchaeology at the VU commented "Though Biomolecular Archaeology has long been recognised as a promising research area, there has been no structural approach to this field in the Netherlands. We are convinced that the appointment of Matthew Collins as 'Bijzonder Hoogleraar' at the Institute for Geo- and Bioarchaeology will contribute substantially to the development of this new discipline in the Netherlands"