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School of Geography

Dr Claire Harris


Honorary Research Fellow



I am a Palaeolithic and community archaeologist, with particular expertise in the Palaeolithic of Britain and northern Europe. My current role with MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) is as a member of the Thames Discovery Programme. This is one of the UK’s most successful community archaeology projects, providing access to archaeology and leading efforts to record the largest archaeological site in the UK; the Thames foreshore. I have extensive experience of archaeological excavations in both research and commercial archaeology settings, in Britain and around the world, and spanning from the Palaeolithic to the post-Roman periods. I worked at the British Museum in both curatorial and research roles, most recently as a post-doctoral researcher on the Leverhulme-funded Mapping Palaeolithic Britain project. I am interested in how we can use legacy data from old collections to support current research and my experience as a museum curator has enabled me to utilise my knowledge of the British Museum’s Palaeolithic collections to contribute to research projects.

From 2017 to 2021 I worked with Professor Simon Lewis (Queen Mary, School of Geography) as a post-doctoral researcher on the Pathways to Ancient Britain project (2017-2021). While at Queen Mary, I led a number of public engagement and collaboration projects including “Neanderthals in Hackney: exploring north London’s Stone Age past”, in partnership with Hackney Museum, “Resourcing teachers for Key Stage 2 Prehistory” in collaboration with Norfolk Museums Service and “Deep History Detectives: Discovering and documenting Palaeolithic finds from the north Norfolk coast”. I was also a researcher on the Palaeolithic Artefacts arising from Sandscaping project funded by North Norfolk District Council, working on public engagement and building links with collectors. I also contributed to undergraduate teaching at Queen Mary as a teaching assistant and I co-developed and ran the 2019 Queen Mary Summer School course: Timewalkers: early humans, stone tools and environmental change. I am a Research Associate with the Pathways to Ancient Britain project.



 Recent Publications

  • Harris, C.R.E., Bynoe, R. and Lewis, S.G. 2021. Collecting mammoths: a lost world on the Norfolk coast. British Archaeology, July/August, 28–33.

  • Harris, C.R.E., Ashton, N. and Lewis, S.G. 2019. From site to museum: a critical assessment of collection history on the formation and interpretation of the British early Palaeolithic record. Journal of Paleolithic Archaeology.

  • Ashton, N., Harris, C.R.E. and Lewis, S.G. 2018. Frontiers and routeways from Europe: the Early Middle Palaeolithic of Britain. Journal of Quaternary Science 33, 194–211.

  • Hosfield, R., Harris, C., Barr. K., La Porta, A., and Davis, R. 2016. Report on the ‘Experimental approaches to the Palaeolithic and Mesolithic: possibilities and prospects’ conference, 28 March 2015, University of Reading. Lithics 36, pp.72-75.

  • Ashton, N. and Harris, C.R.E. (Eds) 2015. No Stone Unturned: Papers in Honour of Roger Jacobi. London: LSS.

  • Ashton, N., Lewis, S.G. and Harris, C.R.E. 2015. The distribution of early Palaeolithic sites in Britain. In: Ashton, N. & Harris, C.R.E. (eds), No Stone Unturned: Papers in Honour of Roger Jacobi. London: LSS, pp. 19-30.

  • Harris, C.R.E. 2015. The academic legacy of Roger Jacobi. In: Ashton, N. & Harris, C.R.E. (eds), No Stone Unturned: Papers in Honour of Roger Jacobi. London: LSS, pp. 259-269.

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