Osteo-doctoral day for Ylva Telldahl

Ylva Telldahl will do her doctoral defence for her thesis on December 19 at Stockholm University föreläsningssalen, Botaniska institutionen, Lilla Frescativägen 5 at 13:00.

Her thesis is called: Working animals and skeletal lesions. Paleopathology of cattle and horse in Iron Age and medieval Öland, Sweden.

Ylva has concentrated on the relationship between animal husbandry practices and the associated pathological conditions using methods such as osteometric analysis, conventional radiographic and bone mineral study, as well as incorporated molecular analysis.

The material used was excavated (1964-1974) at Eketorp ringfort on Öland. The fort was used during the Iron Age and early Middle Ages, ca 300–1300 AD and from the Skedemosse wetland site that was excavated in the early 60’s.  This site is a ritual site where weapons, animals, coins and other valuables was offered to the gods, 200-500 AD.

Read the full abstract here.


Magnus Reuterdahl


Today I was elected to the Association Board of DIK, the Swedish union for academics working on Culture and Communication, for the next three years

It’s both inspiring and exiting to be part of the DIK’s Association Board and to get be part of an interesting group of people and to work with interesting issues.

DIKs styrelse 2013-2015.
Övre raden från vänster: Erik Palm, Magnus Reuterdahl, Sara Sivre, Mia Lindgren, Lars Aldemark. Främre raden från vänster: Susanna Wennerfeldt, Helena Leidebrant, Karin Linder, Lena Sundberg, Emili Rask, Anna-Stina Takala. Ej med på bild: Jimmy Mannung, Sara Wranne. Bild: DIK.se

Idag blev jag invald i DIKs förbundsstyrelse, där jag kommer att sitta de närmsta tre åren. Jag ser fram emot att få arbeta med ett gäng intressanta människor från andra branscher, sätta mig in i nya frågor och ta del av intressanta arbetspolitiska frågor.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Georgian National Museum, Tbilisi, Georgia

I recently was in Georgia on a wine-tour in combination with EWBC. Now Georgia also poses lots of interesting archaeological finds and some of the oldest that can be connected to wine and wine producing.

Vine branches with silver framing, dated to ca 2-1st millennium B.C. found in Georgia

We visited the Georgian National Museums archaeological exhibit and also got to see some finds that as yet has not reached the exhibit. If you go to Georgia this is a museum not to miss, lots of nice and interesting finds that shows both relations to West Europe, the Middle East and Asia – there’s really no question that you are on the Silk road.

Most of these finds are found in graves and there are several fantastic gold and silver artifacts. The exhibition represent the history of Georgian gold smithery from the 3rd millennium B.C. To the 4th century A.D. So lets get ready for some archeo- artifact – pornography! The pictures are just a few the objects on display and a few in the end that are not on display as yet.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Populär arkeologi 2012:3

This post will follow in English

Nu finns Populär Arkeologi nr 3 2012 – i denna har jag skrivit en krönika om mina åsikter om kulturmiljöutredningen. Som helhet finns det mycket i den som är bra, det jag inte gillar är förändringen av fornlämningsbegreppet samt en avsaknad av konsekvensanalys – det finns många förslag och delförslag som enligt min bedömning kommer leda till såväl ökade kostnader för samhället som ökad arbetsbelastning för såväl länsstyrelserna som för riksantikvarieämbetet.

Köp eller låna nya nya numret så får du en mer nyanserad bild!

Magnus Reuterdahl

Populär arkeologi or Popular Archaeology is a Swedish magazine about archaeology. In the current issue I’ve written a chronicle of my views on investigation concerning the Cutural Heritage act. As a whole much of the work is solid, what I do not like is the proposal regarding changes of the concept of ancient monuments and remains and that many proposals and partial proposal which in my opinion will lead to both increased costs for society as well as an increased workload for both the County Administrative boards the National Heritage Board.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Am I to become a union tycoon?

Most archaeologist along with librarians, antiquarians and communicators in Sweden are in the union DIK (Link in Swedish), a part of SACO (Swedens Academics Central Organisation). DIK is short for Documentation, Information and Culture (Kultur).

Now I never been much of a union man, though I do recognize they do an important work. Lately I’ve been pulled into it, though, as I’ve been working in a work group with ethics & archeology. Also it seems they gotten a new image via the current president, Karin Linder, that does do a good job.

A few days ago I was asked to run as a board member for the national council of DIK. Its always an honor that someone, whoever it is, has proposed me for a position such as this. Currently I am considering it: partly cause I’ve become more and more interested in the union as such and I believe that they do a good job, partly due to the fact that I feel it is important that an archaeologist, and especially someone that does not have a permanent job (as most archaeologists), can have a voice within DIK.

I don’t believe I’ll become a tycoon but I do believe that I might be able to be an interesting voice within DIK and that why I considering saying yes.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Day of Archaeology Sweden – 25th year anniversary!

Arkeologidagen (Swedish word) or Day of Archaeology is an annual event in Sweden, celebrating its 25th consecutive year. All over Sweden the National Heritage board, the County museums and other excavating companies, foundations and universities shows part of their work for the public, usually by opening up an excavation-site to the public, by giving lectures or by giving tours.

This year Day of Archaeology is on Sunday August 26th .

In Östergötland County you can visit the excavations at Linköpings castle where Östergötland museum are excavating a tower foundation, dated to ca 1100-1300 AD (read more here) or visit the excavations done by the National Heritage board, UV Öst, at Askeby monastery (read more here). In Norrköping Stiftelsen Kulturmiljövård opens up the excavation site at the quarter Mjölnaren where parts of the medieval and historic part of the town is excavted (read more here). Another event in Norrköping is held by the rock art museum Himmelstalund that gives guided tours of the rock art area (read more here).

And more… this is but a few of the things happening, keep a look out for more! If you are in another part of Sweden check the local museum or the National Heritage board webpagefor some of the activities.

OBS – All links are in Swedish, but that’s normally readable with a little help of google translate etc.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Så du vill bli arkeolog! // Ahh… you’ve decided to be an archaeologist!

An English version of this post will follow the Swedish.

Inspirerad av min kollega i norr, Nils Harnesks blogginlägg Från student till yrkesaktiv… en till synes enkel resa men som man kan göra på många olika vägar tänkte jag skriva några ord om min väg från student till yrkesverksam.

Låt mig börja med ett citat från en annan bloggande arkeolog Martin Rundkvist Archaeology is Not a Good Career – Arbetsmarknaden är skit och det finns inga jobb. Alla skandinaviska länder producerar betydligt fler arkeologer varje år via universiteten än det finns arkeologer som går i pension. Om du trots detta, mot alla odds får ett jobb, så kommer du få det via kontakter och jobbet kommer sannolikt vara dåligt betalt och bara vara under några sommarmånader. Negativt – ja, sant, ja för många men inte för alla.

Men vill du bli arkeolog behöver du göra betydligt mer än att bara klara dina kurser på Universitetet, i viss mån gäller det att specialisera sig, dels genom kurser men kanske främst genom val, såsom uppsatsämne och att sälja in sig. Att skapa nätverk som når utanför universitets väggar, till exempelvis genom att skriva om något en arbetsgivare kan vara intresserad av och i det gäller det att identifiera framtida arbetsgivare. Tänk på att det finns fler vägar än man kanske tänker på vid en första anblick; det finns museer, stiftelser, privata företag, myndigheter, forskningsinstitut med mera. Ett annat sätt att profilera sig är att göra om sin uppsats till en artikel så man kan visa att man gjort något mer än att bara ha skrivit ett par uppsatser, man kan leta upp internationella grävningar mm.

Min resa har gått via forskningsprojekt på Stockholms Universitet, där jag var med forskningsgrävningar och göra ett par osteologiska analyser. Samtidigt skrev jag en artikel av min Magisteruppsats som publicerades i Urminne och ytterligare en tillsammans med en doktorand utifrån en osteologisk analys som också publicerades i Urminne. Via en kurs i kulturmiljövård fick jag kontakter in i länsstyrelsevärlden, dels genom en uppsats riktad till länsstyrelserna, dels genom ett utökat kontaktnät. Detta kombinerat gjorde att jag fick jobb på Länsstyrelsen i Kronbergs län där jag jobbade i flera projekt rörande stormskador efter stormarna Gudrun och Per. Detta gav mig dels en inblick och kunskaper om handläggning men framförallt inventeringsvana och lite projektledningsvana. Därefter jobbade jag med arkeologiska undersökningar för Östergötlands museum och Norrbottens museum och med ett projekt tillsammans med en studiekompis som tagit oss till Kina två gånger om. Därefter har jag jobbat på Länsstyrelserna i Norrbotten och Västernorrland, för privata företag såsom Arkeologicentrum och Arkeologikonsult och Kalmar museum för för tillfället jobba på Länsstyrelsen i Östergötland. Jag har med andra ord snurrat runt en hel del i vårt avlånga land och träffat mängder med intressanta människor, sett fantastiska kulturmiljöer och lärt och lär mig mängder… hela tiden!

Sanning att säga man måste förbereda sig på åtminstone några år i en kappsäck (8 år och pågående), halvtaskiga boenden (för tillfället dock bra) och en taskig lön (lite bättre nu!) – till det kommer dubbel bosättning och massor med resor. Belöningen är ett fantastiskt jobb och fantastiska kollegor. Sedan kan det vara betydligt lättare att få jobb om man är beredd att göra ett antal säsonger långt från storstaden, så kolla upp,genom dina nätverk (vänner, kollegor, lärare, twitter, bloggar, facebook grupper kan vara sätt att förstora ditt nätverk) var större projekt är på gång, t ex vägarbeten, större byggprojekt etc och kontakta arkeologiska företag i denna region. Om du får jobb, se till att få lära dig så mycket som möjligt, försök att få ta ansvar över något och gör dig så värdefull som möjligt. Det är också ett bra sätt att verkligen lära sig något och något som kan vässa ditt CV inför kommande säsonger.

Jag skulle också se till att ha en plan B, för de flesta jag arbetat med har inte stannat i branschen, av olika anledningar: en del har tröttnat på resandet och osäkerheten, andra på hårt jobb i dåligt väder, vissa på grund av lönen och några för att de helt enkelt inte haft turen att få några jobb.

Jag önskar dig lycka till om jag inte skrämt bort dig och du nu ändå bestämt dig!

Är du arkeolog och bloggar – skriv ett inlägg på detta tema du med så kan vi försöka samla ihop dem någonstans.

Ossamenta har skrivit ett inlägg här (på engelska)

DIK har lagt upp versioner av detta här och här

Magnus Reuterdahl


I got inspired by a colleague of mine, archaeologist and blogger, Nils Harnesks, who wrote a blog post entitled From student to a professional career … a seemingly simple trip but it can be done in many different ways (In Swedish). I thought I’d share a few words about my route from student to professional.

Let me begin this by a quote from an another blogging Scandy-archaeologist, Martin Rundkvist who blogged about Archaeology is Not a Good Career a few years ago. He writes: The labour market is crap and there are no jobs. All Scandinavian countries produce new archaeologists at a vastly higher rate than the old ones retire. If you do get a job against all odds, then that will be through contacts, and the job will be poorly paid and last only a few months in the summer. That might seem a bit harsh and negative – but it’s kind of true, at least for many though not for all.

But since you’ve already decided to become an archaeologist, you need to do much more than just manage your classes in college, to some extent, you have to specialize, through courses, but perhaps mostly by choices, such as essay topic and to sell your self, or branding your self. It’s important to build networks that extend beyond the walls of the university, for example, by writing about something an employer might be interested in and in relation to that identify potential employers. Keep in mind that there are more ways to be an archaeologist than you might think at first glance, there are museums, foundations, private companies, government agencies, research institutes and more. Another way to distinguish yourself is to make your essay into an article so you can show that you have done something more than just having written a few essays, you can also look up international excavations or research projects that you can help out in.

The last 8 or 9 years when I’ve been active, I’ve worked for 15 or so employers, all over Sweden, with different tasks and in different situations. One day digging north of the polar circle the next writing decisions at an agency or doing surveys. All fun, always something new, meeting new people, seeing new “old” things and always learning. Its quite a ride 🙂

Truth be told you also prepare yourself for at least a few years in a suitcase, with half dodgy accommodation and a shitty wages. The reward is a fantastic job and great colleagues. It may be much easier to get a job if you are prepared to make a few seasons away from the big city so scout for projects on the go via your networks; twitter might be good as well as blogs or facebookgroups etc. If you get a job, make sure to learn as much as possible, try to take charge of something and make yourself as valuable as possible. There is also a good way to push yourself and your CV.

Even though you’ve seem to have made up your mind I’d make sure to have a plan B, for most people I worked with are not still in the industry, for various reasons: some have grown tired of traveling and the uncertainty, others did not enjoy the hard work, often in bad weather, some due to the low salaries and some because they simply have not had the good fortune to get any job.

I wish you the best of luck if you still consider Archaeology as a career!

If you are you an archaeologist and have a blog – write a post on this subject, then we might collect all the posts somewhere.

Ossamenta has a post here

Magnus Reuterdahl



Now that’s a word an archaeologist isn’t spoiled with. For years and years this wasn’t even in my vocabulary, at least not in combination with the word summer. Well, this year I thrive on the luxury of having two weeks off – now, isn’t that lovely J

Then what will I do with all this free time you might ask – a few days in Germany and Austria to meet friends, attend a wedding and of course buy and drink plenty of wine and then a few days in Sweden enjoying (?) the summer.

Magnus Reuterdahl

Day of Archaeology 2012

It’s on again – Day of Archaeology – check it out, last year more than 400 archaeologists world wide posted – lets see how many we are this year. My contirbution is called Who is an archaeologist? – check it out!

Magnus Reuterdahl

After the games been played

As we’re in the middle of a fantastic European football championship and one can watch top match after match delivered as they were produced on a conveyor belt – it’s kind of hard imagine a time with less or no top football to watch – though we all know it’s lurking there just around the corner. With several months for the next Champions league, Premier League, La Liga, Bundesliga or Italian Serie A and then again years for the next World or European championship.

In Sweden we can still enjoy football during the summer as Allsvenskan (Swedish first division) and Superettan (Swedish second division) etc. runs its course during this part of the year (though I wont claim it’s great football) and still here is my love in the football world – Jönköping Södra IF aka J-Södra, somewhere in the middle of the second division. And though it seems every season gives cause for a heart attack as they seems be stuck around relegation line to the lower divisions.

Stadsparksvallen in Jönköping

Stadsparksvallen in Jönköping, just before the season started 2012

It then you realize there are always those have it worse. This midsummer I spent in the small community Långban in Värmland. This village was mining community that had its hay day before 1972 when the mines closed down.

And there while taking a walk I saw what was left of a someones dream, someones favourite team, a graveyard of football memories – though I can’t much on the internet.

The team was called Långban IF, they started in 1924, they played in red and white, the “area” was called Mullvaden (the Mole) and the senior team, was cancelled in 1968 though if I understand it right they made a swift comback in the early 80’s. Långban IF has a webpage though (in Swedish).

It’s when I see this, I’m a glad that my favourite team still is in the loop, I can see my team not just the remains of what once was a team. Still this is ancient remain, a part of our Cultural Heritage, a reminder of what once was, someone’s dreams and aspirations, joy and sorrow, a monument of past glory’s and defeats.

Magnus Reuterdahl

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