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Mik Lisowski
Leverhulme Postdoctoral Research Associate



Mik is a zooarchaeologist and a stable isotope specialist, with a particular interest in applying zooarchaeological and isotopic methods to investigate religion and ethnicity in the past. In 2019, he has joined BioArCh as a Postdoctoral Research Associate, working with Dr Stephanie Wynne-Jones and Dr Michelle Alexander on a Leverhulme-funded Urban Ecology and Transitions of the Zanzibar Archipelago project.

Mik completed his PhD at the University of Sheffield. His AHRC-funded project investigated historic Jewish butchery and culinary practices, meat provisioning, and relationship with Christians using zooarchaeological, historical, and religious sources. Prior to arriving at York, he took up the post of a Postdoctoral Fellow at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. His work there involved examining biometry, geometric morphometrics, and mortality profiles of Polish Neolithic cattle in relation to its genetics. Mik also holds a master’s degree from Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan for his dissertation on zooarchaeology of a Neolithic site in Poland.

Mik has previously worked as a zooarchaeologist on numerous research projects. In 2014-2015 he was the originator and one of the principal investigators of a project entitled “Re-discovered. The comprehensive monograph of archaeological materials from a Neolithic site Kopydłowo 6.” The outcomes of the project were published in a book and journal papers. Mik was also employed as a zooarchaeologist in several other projects, including Çatalhöyük Research Project, and Cardiff University’s “The times of their lives: towards precise narratives of change in the European Neolithic through formal chronological modelling.”



My current research project focusses on exploring food provisioning and subsistence strategies of medieval Zanzibar through zooarchaeological and stable isotope (δ13C from collagen and carbonates, δ15N, δ34S) analysis of marine and terrestrial fauna.

Key research interests

  • Archaeology of food and cuisine
  • Multi-faith and multicultural societies in the past
  • Urban food provisioning systems in the past
  • Taphonomy and butchery studies in zooarchaeology
  • Isotopic and biomolecular analysis in zooarchaeology
  • History and archaeology of Jewish culture, Judaism, Kashrut and Shechita. Jewish identity in the past
  • Food and culture of the Swahili coast in the past
  • Food systems and sociocultural transitions in the Central European Neolithic




Contact details

Dr Mik Lisowski
Leverhulme Postdoctoral Research Associate
BioArCh-University of York
Environment Building, Wentworth Way
YO10 5DD