Maria Guagnin is an archaeologist specialising in rock art research, with a particular focus on the relationship between the depicted animal species and the environment and landscape experienced by the engravers or painters. Maria uses a combination of zoological, quantitative and spatial analyses to isolate environmental and cultural information contained in the imagery and to facilitate an integration of the rock art into its archaeological and environmental context. Her doctoral thesis is entitled ‘From Savanna to Desert: Animal Engravings in the Changing Prehistoric Environment of the Wadi al-Hayat, Libyan Sahara’ and was completed at the University of Edinburgh.
Her wider research interests include population dynamics and settlement patterns across changing environments and landscapes. Maria has considerable fieldwork, surveying and mapping experience in the Sahara, the Near East and across Europe.