Dr Gemma Warham
Department of Archaeology
Teaching Associate in Archaeobotany
+44 114 222 2933
Full contact details
Department of Archaeology
Room C13, Regent Street, Sheffield, S10 2TN
I am an archaeobotanist and member of the Sheffield Archaeobotanical Consultancy (SAC), which is based within the Sheffield Centre for Archaeobotany and ancient Land-usE (SCALE). I am also the module co-ordinator for post-graduate taught module AAP659 Archaeobotany and contributor on the undergraduate Level 2 module AAP235 Science in Archaeology, for the 2021/22 Autumn Semester.
Through my undergraduate and post-graduate degrees I trained in environmental archaeology and specialised in archaeobotany. I studied BSc (Hons) Bioarchaeology at the University of Bradford, where I first developed an interest in archaeobotany, and later went onto study for an MSc Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy at the University of Sheffield. I completed my doctoral thesis in 2021, where my research focused on the use of plant functional attributes as a tool for understanding the process of cereal and pulse domestication.
My role as an archaeobotanical specialist includes the processing of archaeological soil samples, the assessment and analysis of plant macroremains and palaeoenvironmental remains, and identification of material suitable for scientific dating. I have authored a diverse body of commercial work from a range of sites and periods (spanning the Mesolithic to the post-medieval periods), including watching briefs, trial trenches and evaluations, to full-scale excavations. I have also worked as an archaeobotanical specialist for the Environmental Archaeology Consultancy (EAC), based in Lincolnshire, and Palaeoecology Research Services (PRS), based in Kingston-Upon-Hull.
I have experience of excavation on research projects of varying complexity, ranging from the Mesolithic through to the post-medieval period within the UK. I have also assisted assisting with the on-site flotation and assessment of botanical samples from the Neolithic site of Çatal Höyük, Turkey, and whilst on a collection trip for my PhD fieldwork, assisted with setting up flotation at the Neolithic site of Bestansur, Iraqi Kurdistan.
- 2021 - PhD in Archaeobotany and Functional Ecology (University of Sheffield)
- 2011 - MSc in Environmental Archaeology and Palaeoeconomy (University of Sheffield)
- 2001 - BSc (Hons) Bioarchaeology (University of Bradford)
- 2001 - Diploma in Professional Archaeological Studies (University of Bradford)
- Research interests
Using a functional ecological approach, my doctoral research explored the natural and anthropogenic selective pressures that led to cereal and pulse domestication in the Early Neolithic in southwest Asia.
Main research interests:
- Ecology of crop domestication
- Transition from hunter-gatherer based subsistence to early agricultural economies
- Diet and economy
- Teaching activities
PGT - AAP659 Archaeobotany (co-ordinator 2021/22)
UG Level 2 - AAP235 Science in Archaeology (2021/22)
PGT - Graduate Teaching Assistant, demonstrating for the laboratory practicals for AAP659 Archaeobotany (Autumn semesters 2019/20 and 2020/21)
UG Level 2 - presented a ‘lab taster session’ on environmental archaeology and sampling (Spring semester 2020/21)
- Professional activities
2007 - Present: Member of the Archaeobotanical Work Group (AWG)
- Poster presentation (‘Functional ecology as a tool for understanding the process of cereal and pulse domestication’ G. Martin, G. Jones, C. Osborne and M. Charles): 16th International Workgroup for Palaeoethnobotany (IWGP), Thessaloniki, Greece (17th-22nd June 2013).
- Poster presentation (second author ‘Characterising plant assemblages from Viking/Norse deposits from Old Scatness, Shetland: Temporal or Cultural variation?’ J. Summers, G. Martin and J. Bond): UK Archaeological Science 2005 Conference, Bradford, UK (13th-16th April 2005).
- Oral presentation (‘All things considered: Environmental archaeology and the site of Old Scatness, Shetland’. G. Martin): Association for Environmental Archaeology (AEA) One Day Meeting, Bradford, UK (24th April 2004).
Hodgson, J. G., Marti, G. M., Šerá, B., Jones, G., Bogaard, A., Charles, M., Font, X., Ater, M., Taleb, A., Santini, B. A., Hmimsa, Y., Palmer, C., Wilson, P. J., Band, S. R., Styring, A., Diffey, C., Green, L., Nitsch, E., Stroud, E. & Warham, G., (2020). Seed size, number and strategies in annual plants: a comparative functional analysis and synthesis. Annals of Botany, 126, 1109-1128.
Preece, C., Clamp, N. F., Warham, G., Charles, M., Rees, M., Jones, G. & Osborne, C. P., (2018). Cereal progenitors differ in stand harvest characteristics from related wild grasses. Journal of Ecology, 106, 1286-1297.
Hodgson, J. G., Santini, B. A., Monserrat Marti, G., Royo Pla, F., Jones, G., Bogaard, A., Charles, M., Font, X., Ater, M., Taleb, A., Poschlod, P., Hmimsa, Y., Palmer, C., Wilson, P. J., Band, S. R., Styring, A., Diffey, C., Green, L., Nitsch, E., Stroud, E., Romo-Díez, A., De Torres Espuny, L. & Warham, G., (2017). Trade-offs between seed and leaf size (seed–phytomer–leaf theory): functional glue linking regenerative with life history strategies … and taxonomy with ecology? Annals of Botany, 120, 633-652.
Preece, C., Livarda, A., Christin, P.-A., Wallace, M., Martin, G., Charles, M., Jones, G., Rees, M. & Osborne, C., (2017). How did the domestication of Fertile Crescent grain crops increase their yields? Functional Ecology, 31, 387-397.
Preece, C., Livarda, A., Wallace, M., Martin, G., Charles, M., Christin, P.-A., Jones, G., Rees, M. & Osborne, C., (2015). Were Fertile Crescent crop progenitors higher yielding than other wild species that were never domesticated? New Phytologist, 207, 905–913.
Carrot, J., Foster, A., Hopla, E., Krawiec, K. & Martin, G., (2010). Marfield Quarry: a palaeoenvironmental assessment. Birmingham: Birmingham Archaeology.
Martin, G. (2009), ‘Archaeobotanical Remains’. In: M. Philips, H. Duncan, C. Mallows, W. Keir, C. Clarke, J. Wells, J. Rackham, P. Guest, J. McKinley, R. Gale, G. Martin, R. Palmer, R. Macphail, J. Crowther, and B. King. Archaeological Investigations along the route of the A505 Baldock bypass, Hertfordshire. Albion Archaeology, East Anglian Archaeology, Hertfordshire County Council.
Rackham, D. J. & Martin, G. 2005. Environmental archaeology report. Trans Thoroton Soc Nottinghamshire, 108, 56-75.
Martin, G.L. and Bond, J.M. (2004), ‘Plant remains’. In: S.J. Dockrill, J.M. Bond, V.E. Turner, eds. Old Scatness and Jarlshof Environs Project 2003. Interim Report No9 (Data Structure Report). Bradford Archaeological Sciences Research 13. Bradford: Department of Archaeological Sciences/Shetland Amenity Trust. pp. 104-109, 115-121.
Martin, G.L. and Bond, J.M. (2003), ‘Plant remains’. In: S.J. Dockrill, J.M. Bond, V.E. Turner, eds. Old Scatness and Jarlshof Environs Project 2002. Interim Report No8 (Data Structure Report). Bradford Archaeological Sciences Research 12. Bradford: Department of Archaeological Sciences/Shetland Amenity Trust. pp. 116-124.
Martin, G.L. and Bond, J.M. (2002), ‘Plant remains’. In: S.J. Dockrill, J.M. Bond, V.E. Turner, eds. Old Scatness and Jarlshof Environs Project 2001. Interim Report No7 (Data Structure Report). Bradford Archaeological Sciences Research 11. Bradford: Department of Archaeological Sciences/Shetland Amenity Trust. pp. 74-75.