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The diffusion of architectural innovations : Modelling social networks in the ancient building trade

Gerding, Henrik LU and Östborn, Per LU (2017) p.71-84
Abstract
Within the project LATERES COCTILES early fired bricks have been the object
of a multifaceted investigation. One aim has been to elucidate the mechanisms behind the diffusion of this innovation. An inventory of Hellenistic and early Roman fired bricks around the Mediterranean resulted in an archaeological database comprising 276 brick contexts. Network analysis was applied to these data using a two-fold strategy: First, general similarity networks were generated, representing likely causal relationships between the contexts. Exploratory and statistical analysis of these networks enabled a data-based characterisation of the diffusion process. Then a theoretical model of this process was developed with the aim of simulating the observed... (More)
Within the project LATERES COCTILES early fired bricks have been the object
of a multifaceted investigation. One aim has been to elucidate the mechanisms behind the diffusion of this innovation. An inventory of Hellenistic and early Roman fired bricks around the Mediterranean resulted in an archaeological database comprising 276 brick contexts. Network analysis was applied to these data using a two-fold strategy: First, general similarity networks were generated, representing likely causal relationships between the contexts. Exploratory and statistical analysis of these networks enabled a data-based characterisation of the diffusion process. Then a theoretical model of this process was developed with the aim of simulating the observed data. By comparing model simulations with observed data, the model could be improved step by step. The starting
point for constructing the model was the assumption that different categories of people contributed differently to the diffusion process. In this paper the underlying principles and main results of the modelling will be presented, together with a possible interpretation of these results. It is argued that a shift in decision-making within building industry and a greater reliance on technical expertise might have had a key role in promoting the diffusion of some architectural innovations. (Less)
Please use this url to cite or link to this publication:
author
organization
publishing date
type
Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceeding
publication status
published
subject
host publication
Sinews of empire : Networks in the Roman Near East and beyond - Networks in the Roman Near East and beyond
editor
Teigen, H.F. ; Heldaas Seland, E. ; and
pages
14 pages
publisher
Oxbow Books
ISBN
978-1-78570-596-0
project
LATERES COCTILES - The early use of fired bricks in Europe
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
1377e6db-4fe5-4825-8f8b-81da672f96c1
date added to LUP
2017-06-09 11:31:32
date last changed
2020-02-19 02:19:04
@inproceedings{1377e6db-4fe5-4825-8f8b-81da672f96c1,
  abstract     = {Within the project LATERES COCTILES early fired bricks have been the object<br/>of a multifaceted investigation. One aim has been to elucidate the mechanisms behind the diffusion of this innovation. An inventory of Hellenistic and early Roman fired bricks around the Mediterranean resulted in an archaeological database comprising 276 brick contexts. Network analysis was applied to these data using a two-fold strategy: First, general similarity networks were generated, representing likely causal relationships between the contexts. Exploratory and statistical analysis of these networks enabled a data-based characterisation of the diffusion process. Then a theoretical model of this process was developed with the aim of simulating the observed data. By comparing model simulations with observed data, the model could be improved step by step. The starting<br/>point for constructing the model was the assumption that different categories of people contributed differently to the diffusion process. In this paper the underlying principles and main results of the modelling will be presented, together with a possible interpretation of these results. It is argued that a shift in decision-making within building industry and a greater reliance on technical expertise might have had a key role in promoting the diffusion of some architectural innovations.},
  author       = {Gerding, Henrik and Östborn, Per},
  booktitle    = {Sinews of empire : Networks in the Roman Near East and beyond},
  editor       = {Teigen, H.F. and Heldaas Seland, E.},
  isbn         = {978-1-78570-596-0},
  language     = {eng},
  pages        = {71--84},
  publisher    = {Oxbow Books},
  title        = {The diffusion of architectural innovations : Modelling social networks in the ancient building trade},
  url          = {https://lup.lub.lu.se/search/ws/files/76192949/Sinews_of_Empire_Ch_4_Gerding_stborn.pdf},
  year         = {2017},
}