Thomas Levy

Distinguished Professor, Department of Anthropology

Thomas Evan Levy is Distinguished Professor and holds the Norma Kershaw Chair in the Archaeology of Ancient Israel and Neighboring Lands at the University of California, San Diego. He is a member of the Department of Anthropology and Jewish Studies Program, and is director of the Center for Cyber-archaeology and Sustainability (CCAS) at the Qualcomm Institute, California Center of Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2) at UC San Diego and was recently appointed co-director of the new Scripps Center for Marine Archaeology at UC San Diego.

Professor Levy has published 10 books and over 250 scholarly articles. Levy is editor-in-chief of Approaches to Anthropological Archaeology (Equinox: UK) and co-editor of Quantitative Methods in the Humanities and Social Sciences (Springer: NY). Elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, Levy is a Levantine field archaeologist with interests in the role of technology, especially early mining and metallurgy, on social evolution from the beginnings of sedentism and the domestication of plants and animals in the Pre-Pottery Neolithic period (ca. 7500 BCE) to the rise of the first historic Levantine state level societies in the Iron Age (ca. 1200 – 500 BCE).

A Fellow of the Explorers Club, Levy won the 2011 Lowell Thomas Award for “Exploring the World’s Greatest Mysteries.” Levy has been the principal investigator of many interdisciplinary archaeological field projects in Israel, Jordan and most recently in Greece, that have been funded by the National Geographic Society, the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Science Foundation, and other organizations. Levy also conducts ethnoarchaeological research in India. Together with his wife Alina Levy and the Sthapathy traditional craftsmen from the village of Swamimalai, they co-authored the book Masters of Fire - Hereditary Bronze Casters of South India. Bochum: German Mining Museum, 2008Levy and his colleague Mohammad Najjar won Biblical Archaeology Review’s ‘Best BAR Article’ for “Condemned to the Mines: Copper Production & Christian Persecution.”

His most recent book is a two volume work entitled: Levy, T.E., M. Najjar, and E. Ben-Yosef, eds. 2014. New Insights into the Iron Age Archaeology of Edom, Southern Jordan - Surveys, Excavations and Research from the Edom Lowlands Regional Archaeology Project (ELRAP). Los Angeles: UCLA Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press. He was Co-PI on the National Science Foundation IGEERT $3.2 million grant entitled “ Training, Research and Education in Engineering for Cultural Heritage Diagnostics (TEECH). Levy directs the UC San Diego Levantine and Cyber-Archaeology Laboratory and is Director of the Center for Cyber-Archaeology and Sustainability at UC San Diego’s Qualcomm Institute – California Institute of Telecommunications and Information Technology (Calit2). Tom serves as Chair of the Committee on Archaeological Policy (CAP) of the American Schools of Oriental Research (ASOR) and is a member of the European Academy of Sciences and Arts.

Most recently, Levy serves as Principal Investigator for the 2-year University of California Office of the President Catalyst grant ($1.07 million) 2016 – 2018 that focuses on ‘At-Risk World Heritage and the Digital Humanities’; he is an adjunct professor at the University of Cyprus and PI of the new Kastrouli Land & Sea Late Mycenaean Settlement Project (Phokis, Greece) with colleagues at the University of the Aegean. In 2016, Prof. Levy was honored with the CENIC (Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California) Award for ‘Innovations in Networking – Research Applications’ for the work his laboratory does in digital cultural heritage.