João Zilhão

João Zilhão (born 1957, Lisbon, and ICREA Research professor at the University of Barcelona as of January 1st, 2011), was professor of Palaeolithic Archaeology at the University of Bristol 2005-2010, and had previously taught at the University of Lisbon and, on a temporary basis, at the Universities of Paris I and Bordeaux I. In January 1996, he was appointed by the Portuguese government to set up the Côa Valley Archaeological Park, to co-ordinate the scientific research carried out to establish the chronology of the valley’s Palaeolithic rock art, and to prepare the nomination of the site for World Heritage status (eventual listing date, December 1998). Between May 1997 and May 2002, he created and directed the Instituto Português de Arqueologia (IPA), a department of the Ministry of Culture for the supervision of archaeological activity in the country. In 1998, he directed the salvage excavation of the Early Upper Paleolithic child burial of Lagar Velho (Portugal) and, in 2004-2005, the archaeological investigation component of the research carried out at the Peştera cu Oase (Romania), site of Europe’s earliest modern humans. He was the Conference Organizer for the year 2000 Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists, held in Lisbon, and was a member of its Executive Board between 2003 and 2006. In 2003, he was the recipient of a Humboldt Foundation Research Award (host institution: University of Cologne) in recognition of “past achievements in teaching and research.” In 2005, he was the recipient of the London Prehistoric Society’s Europa Prize, in recognition of his “significant and enduring contribution to the study of European prehistory.” In 2012, his research profile was published in Science.