The Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA is a premier research organization dedicated to the creation, dissemination, and conservation of archaeological knowledge and heritage.


UCLA is a public university and that brings a responsibility for us who work here to be part of the public debate. Archaeology is a discipline that allows us to see both the longue durée and short-term events. Our work has the power to show the particularities of day-to-day experiences in the past. It also enables us to analyze what happens in the present within a deep historical perspective. Studying the materiality of everyday life urges us to ask ourselves how our time will be perceived in the future: what will the material reflection be of the America that we live in today? Will future archaeologists see a dramatic widening of the wealth gap and increase in social stratification, characterized by palaces surrounded by green grassy parks with small holes in them? Will future bioarchaeologists conclude that a decline in age-at-death can be linked to a sharp deterioration of the health of large groups of the population? How will future anthropologists characterize the 21st century nation state?

New Books from the CIOA Press

Bonnie Effros and Guolong Lai
William H. Isbell, Mauricio I. Uribe, Anne Tiballi, and Edward P. Zegarra