Bio


Justin Leidwanger's research and fieldwork focus primarily on the role of socioeconomic networks in ancient Mediterranean life. These interests lead him to spend time in and around the Mediterranean's waters, where his fieldwork explores the shipwrecks, ports, and ceramics that provide primary archaeological evidence for mechanisms of communication and exchange spanning the Hellenistic era through Late Antiquity.

In 2012, he initiated the Marzamemi Maritime Heritage Project, which combines archaeology with heritage management and development in southeast Sicily. The first archaeological focus has been on excavation, preservation, reconstruction, and research related to the famous 6th-c. Marzamemi “church wreck,” which sank while carrying a massive cargo of prefabricated marble architectural elements. This work has since expanded and transformed into Project 'U Mari, which explores the diverse but interrelated facets of maritime connections in this corner of the Mediterranean, from colonization and trade to warfare and the refugee crisis. Building on surveys along this coast, his larger collaborative project now under development focuses on the social and economic worlds of 2500 years of tuna fishing using maritime landscape archaeology at the port of Vendicari and documentation of fading material culture and knowledge associated with the traditional mattanza. He has been involved in shipwreck surveys off various coasts of Turkey and Cyprus since 2003, and between 2011 and 2015 co-directed investigations at the ancient port of Burgaz, along southwest Turkey's Datça/Knidos peninsula.

As a Fellow of the Penn Cultural Heritage Center, he has been involved in diverse public engagement, issues of ethical stewardship, and innovative strategies for incorporating maritime cultural heritage into economic and coastal development. He teaches courses and advises students on topics in Roman archaeology, trade and the ancient economy, networks and connectivity, Mediterranean ports, ceramic production and exchange, Greco-Roman architecture and engineering, and archaeological ethics. His lab at the Archaeology Center serves as a research base for field projects as well as a center for digital modeling (structured light scanning, laser scanning, photogrammetry, GIS, network analysis) and pottery analysis (petrography, pXRF).

Academic Appointments


  • Assistant Professor, Classics

Boards, Advisory Committees, Professional Organizations


  • Faculty Member, Stanford Archeology Center, Stanford University
  • Affiliated Faculty, Institute of Nautical Archaeology
  • Consulting Scholar, Mediterranean Section, University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology
  • Co-Director, Excavations of the 6th-century AD Marzamemi “church wreck," coast of Sicily, Italy
  • Member, Marzamemi Maritime Heritage Project
  • Co-Director, Excavations in the Archaic through late Roman harbors of Burgaz, coast of Datca peninsula, Turkey
  • Director, Maritime landscape surveys, coast of Cyprus (2003 - 2009)

Professional Education


  • Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania, Art and Archeology of the Mediterranean World (2011)
  • M.A., Texas A&M University, Nautical Archeology
  • B.A., Loyola University, Chicago, Classics

2019-20 Courses


Stanford Advisees


  • Doctoral Dissertation Reader (AC)
    Amanda Gaggioli, Anja Krieger
  • Doctoral Dissertation Advisor (AC)
    David Pickel
  • Doctoral Dissertation Co-Advisor (AC)
    Gabrielle Thiboutot

All Publications


  • Archaeological Investigations in the Harbours of Burgaz, Turkey: 2011-2015 field seasons INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF NAUTICAL ARCHAEOLOGY Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Tuna, N. 2019; 48 (1): 103–22
  • Knidian "Anyports": a model of coastal adaptation and socioeconomic connectivity from southwest Turkey MEDITERRANEAN HISTORICAL REVIEW Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J. 2019; 34 (1): 9–25
  • Virtual simulation of a late antique shipwreck at Marzamemi, Sicily: Integrated processes for 3D documentation, analysis and representation of underwater archaeological data ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROSPECTION Repola, L., di Carlo, N., Signoretti, D., Leidwanger, J. 2018; 25 (2): 99–109

    View details for DOI 10.1002/arp.1592

    View details for Web of Science ID 000434408200001

  • MARZAMEMI II 'CHURCH WRECK' EXCAVATION: 2017 FIELD SEASON ARCHAEOLOGIA MARITIMA MEDITERRANEA-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL ON UNDERWATER ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J., Tusa, S. 2018; 15: 37–55
  • New investigations of the 6th-c. AD "church wreck" at Marzamemi, Sicily JOURNAL OF ROMAN ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J. 2018; 31: 339–56
  • From Time Capsules to Networks: New Light on Roman Shipwrecks in the Maritime Economy AMERICAN JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J. 2017; 121 (4): 595–619
  • MARZAMEMI II 'CHURCH WRECK' EXCAVATION: 2016 FIELD SEASON ARCHAEOLOGIA MARITIMA MEDITERRANEA-AN INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL ON UNDERWATER ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J., Tusa, S. 2017; 14: 105–22
  • A Late Antique Ceramic Assemblage at Burgaz, Datca Peninsula, South-west Turkey, and the "Normality of the Mixed Cargo' in the Ancient Mediterranean INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF NAUTICAL ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J., Greene, E. S., Tuna, N. 2015; 44 (2): 300-311
  • Burgaz (Palaia Knidos) 2012 Yılı Çalışmaları Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı Tuna, N., Atıcı, N., Sakarya, I., Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J. 2014; 35 (1): 60-75
  • Maritime Networks and Economic Regionalism in the Roman Eastern Mediterranean Les nouvelles de l’archéologie Leidwanger, J. 2014; 135: 32-38
  • Implementing Underwater Cultural Heritage ‘Best Practices’ in the Mediterranean: The Noto Meeting International Journal of Nautical Archaeology Leidwanger, J., Greene, E. S., Daniels, B. I., Leventhal, R. M., Tusa, S. 2014; 43 (2): 453-455
  • A Preliminary Archaeometric Analysis of the Late Roman 1 Amphoras from the Cargo of the Seventh-Century Yassıada Shipwreck, Turkey LRCW 4. Late Roman Coarse Wares, Cooking Wares and Amphorae in the Mediterranean Leidwanger,, J. edited by Poulou-Papadimitriou, N. Oxford University Press. 2014: 897–906
  • Marzamemi II ‘Church Wreck’ Excavation: 2013 Field Season Archaeologia Maritima Mediterranea Leidwanger, J., Bruno, N. 2014; 10: 191-198
  • Integrating an Empire: Maritime Trade and Agricultural Supply in Roman Cyprus Skyllis: Zeitschrift für Unterwasserarchäologie Leidwanger, J. 2014; 13 (1): 59-66
  • Review of "Trading Communities in the Roman World: A Micro-Economic and Institutional Perspective" Columbia Studies in the Classical Tradition Leidwanger, J. Leiden: Brill. 2014
  • Excavating the Harbors of Old Knidos INA Quarterly Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Tuna, N. 2014; 40 (4): 8-13
  • Opportunistic Ports and Spaces of Exchange in Late Roman Cyprus JOURNAL OF MARITIME ARCHAEOLOGY Leidwanger, J. 2013; 8 (2): 221-243
  • Between Local and Long-Distance: A Roman Shipwreck at Fig Tree Bay off SE Cyprus Journal of Roman Archaeology Leidwanger, J. 2013; 26: 191-208
  • Review of "Maritime Technology in the Ancient Economy: Ship-Design and Navigation" Journal of Roman Archaeology Supplementary Series, American Journal of Archaeology Leidwanger, J. 2013; 117 (2)
  • Expanding Contacts and Collapsing Distances in Early Cypro-Archaic Trade: Three Case Studies of Shipwrecks off the Turkish Coast Transport Amphorae and Trade of Cyprus Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Özdaş, H. edited by Lawall, M. L., Lund, J. Aarhus: Aarhus University Press. 2013: 21–34
  • Modeling Distance with Time in Ancient Mediterranean Seafaring: A GIS Application for the Interpretation of Maritime Connectivity Journal of Archaeological Science Leidwanger, J. 2013; 40: 3302-3308
  • Burgaz 2011 Yılı Çalışmaları Kazı Sonuçları Toplantısı Tuna, N., Atıcı, N., Sakarya, I., Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J. 2013; 34 (3): 5-24
  • Law, Ethics, and Deep-Water Archaeology: the Wreck of Cesnola's Napried IKUWA3: Beyond Boundaries: The 3rd International Congress on Underwater Archaeology Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J. edited by Henderson, J. Frankfurt: Roman-Germanic Commission. 2012: 83–88
  • Sourcing the Cargos of Three Archaic Shipwrecks: Kekova Adası, Kepçe Burnu, and Çaycağız Koyu Arkeometri Sonuçları Toplantısı Leidwanger, J., Özdaş, H., Greene, E. S. 2012; 27: 393-409
  • Mare Nostrum? Ethics and Archaeology in Mediterranean Waters AMERICAN JOURNAL OF ARCHAEOLOGY Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Leventhal, R. M., Daniels, B. I. 2011; 115 (2): 311-319
  • Two Early Archaic Shipwrecks at Kekova Adasi and Kepce Burnu, Turkey INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF NAUTICAL ARCHAEOLOGY Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Ozdas, H. A. 2011; 40 (1): 60-68
  • Amphoras from an Early Imperial Shipwreck at Fig Tree Bay, Cyprus: International Imports and Local Imitations Rei Cretariae Romanae Fautorum Acta Leidwanger, J. 2010; 41: 9-16
  • Toward Best Practices in Mediterranean Underwater Archaeology International Journal of Nautical Archaeology Greene, E. S., Leidwanger, J., Leventhal, R. M., Daniels, B. I. 2010; 39 (2): 437-439