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Mapping Mesopotamian Monuments: Part One

Tuesday, August 20, 2013
Estimated Completion: 
Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Part One: Planning Grant

The project will map and assess the conservation and preservation needs of monuments in Iraq.

Mapping Mesopotamian Monuments is part of the larger group of projects that first started with our colleague, Stephen Murray’s Mapping Gothic France. His project established the methods and system we can now apply to monuments in Iraq. The Iraq project will have the additional facets of assessing the conservation and preservation needs for each monument that could then be taken up by other universities, non-governmental agencies and the  Iraqi  State Board of Antiquities and Heritage itself. In the future, Columbia University might consider taking on one conservation project itself. We feel that Columbia’s expertise in mapping monuments and in archaeological and architectural conservation makes us an ideal place to begin a distinctive kind of field project in Iraq.

The project will map and assess the conservation and preservation needs of monuments in Iraq.

While many universities are opting to open new excavations, we feel that this is the time to preserve and conserve what is already exposed to the natural elements and to the damages of war. The goal of the project is to map and document the monuments of Iraq and Kurdistan. The first step of the project is to document the standing monuments and rock reliefs, their state of preservation and condition for historical and conservational purposes. The second step is to record and archive digitally the monuments, and make them available for scholarly and for public use, and for use by the State Board of Antiquities locally.

Our fieldwork team of collaborators includes:

  • Haider Oraibi Almamori, Archaeologist
  • Helen Malko, Archaeologist
  • Serdar Yalcin, Archaeologist and Art Historian
  • Pamela Gerome, Preservation Architect




Edith Porada Professor of Ancient Near Eastern Art History and Archaeology


  • Haider Oraibi Almamori (Archaeologist)
  • Helen Malko (Archaeologist)
  • Serdar Yalcin (Archaeologist and Art Historian)
  • Pamela Gerome (Preservation Architect)


Architecture, Planning & Preservation, Graduate School of Arts & Sciences
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