SESSION 1

INTEGRATING REGIONAL SURVEY DATABASES AROUND ROME: METHODOLOGICAL CHALLENGES AND INTERPRETIVE POTENTIAL

Organised by: Peter Attema, Paolo Carafa, Willem Jongman and Christopher Smith

Ever since Giuseppe Lugli’s  pioneering work for the Forma Italiae in the Pontine region in the early 20th c. on the Roman towns of Tarracina and Circeii, a vast amount of field survey data has been amassed for the suburbium of Rome sensu lato. North of the Tiber, the Tiber Valley Project, building on earlier projects, systematically recorded the southern Etruscan landscape. South of the Tiber the Latium Vetus project, and then the Suburbium project, covered large tracts of northern Latium Vetus, and the Pontine Region Project covered large parts of the southern part of Latium Vetus.

Whilst the data of these individual projects have led to fundamental reassessments of developments in settlement and economy at the regional scale in relation to Rome, they  have never been analyzed in tandem to confront fundamental questions regarding the role of ancient Rome as a regional centre with an expanding suburbium. This is not surprising as the challenges of integrating datasets acquired with different aims and methodologies, and stored in very different data formats, are considerable. It is certain, however, that  a concerted effort of bringing together these data in an integrated data structure that allows detailed questions on demographic  and socio- economic developments  will be a major step forward in our understanding of the growing regional role of Rome from the Early Iron Age onwards north and south of the Tiber.

This session will bring together scholars currently working on the integration of regional data pertaining to the suburbium of Rome. The aim of the session is to, first, present an overview of current work in this field; second, to identify and present shared methodological and interpretive issues in integrating the regional datasets available. Third, to establish a network of interested scholars, who may want to contribute to finding solutions to technical and methodological issues and to prepare a common research agenda, streamlining and guiding future work in this field.

Introduction and presentation of datasets on Rome’s Suburbium: “Integrating data from the Pontine Region Project, the Tiber valley Project and the Suburbium project”,Peter Attema, Paolo Carafa and Christopher Smith

Rome’s suburbium; the potential of an integrated database on the Suburbium, Rob Witcher

Integrating regional-scale data: a case study from the Pontine Region, Tymon de Haas and Gijs Tol

Case studies from the Suburbium project, Maria Cristina Capanna

Integrating survey data: why?, Wim Jongman