Photo of Dr Emily Johnson

Dr Emily Johnson

Research interests

NeoMilk: Milking in Neolithic Temperate Europe

Dr Johnson is a postdoctoral research associate on the NeoMilk project, a major inter-disciplinary project funded by an ERC Advanced Grant (2013-2018) led by Professor Richard P. Evershed (School of Chemistry, Bristol). It explores the introduction and spread of cattle-based agriculture by early Neolithic Linearbandkeramik (LBK) farmers and its implications for modelling the Mesolithic-Neolithic transition in Northern and Central Europe during the 6th millennium BC. There is a particular focus on the origins of dairying as a major component of economy.

Emily's particular contribution to the project is the zooarchaeological analysis of faunal assemblages across Europe, looking specifically at the intensity of bone fat processing in relation to evidence for the liklihood of dairying economies. The research aims to see if the introduction of a more readily-available fat source (milk) results in a reduction of intensity of bone fat use, which can be much more time, labour and fuel expensive to extract.

Research collaborations

Research into cattle husbandry and milking in the LBK involves collaboration with University of Bristol (UK), University College London (UK), CNRS, Paris (FR) and University of Poznan (PL).