Headshot of Alan Farahani

Alan Farahani

Assistant Professor
Department(s): Anthropology
Office: WRI-A 116
Phone: 702-895-5712
Email: alan.farahani@unlv.edu


Alan Farahani is an anthropological archaeologist. He is interested in human-environment “interactions” through time on a theoretical and empirical level, which includes the relationships of people, plants, non-human animals, other biota, and abiotic factors. In particular, his research focuses on the ways in which social, environmental, and ecological phenomena form and are affected by agriculture. To that end, his specific methodological expertise is paleoethnobotany, or the analysis of archaeological plant remains. His geographic and temporal focus is centered on southwest Asia within the last ten thousand years (the Holocene), but with attention to all areas of the world that have seen agriculture develop as an important lifeway that communities use to create food, clothing, and medicine.

In addition, he is actively working on data analysis and visualization methods using open-source software (Python / R) for archaeological applications (and beyond), that can organize, efficiently analyze, and appropriately visualize the large amount of data generated in the course of archaeological fieldwork.  Methods include the development of databases ([no]SQL), the use of spatial analyses (GIS), reproducible analyses (R Markdown / Jupyter notebooks), and discipline specific methods such as morphometrics, generalized linear modeling, correspondence analysis, and rarefaction.

For a list of current projects, please visit his laboratory website.

Alan is currently accepting graduate students.


  • B.A. Rutgers University, 2007
  • MA, Ph.D. University of California Berkeley, 2014

Research Interests

Environmental archaeology and anthropology, paleoethnobotany/archaeobotany, data analysis and visualization (R / Python / (no)SQL / GIS),  agricultural societies and economies worldwide, historical ecology, archaeological method and theory, linguistics, ecology, philosophy of science, southwest Asia, Caucasus, Mediterranean, Eurasia