ArchaeoConcept currently has six employees.
Dr. Cynthia Dunning Thierstein
Cynthia Dunning Thierstein is director of ArchaeoConcept and is responsible for heritage management projects. She is an archaeologist specialising in the European Early Iron Age. She presented her doctorate in 2005 on the theme of the Early Iron Age in the Jura (University of Geneva). After having studied inGeneva and Marburg an der Lahn (Germany), she was assistant in Prehistoric Archaeology in the University of Geneva. From 1989 to 1998 she directed the Schwab Museum in Biel and from 1998 to 2010 she was responsible for the Archaeological Service of the Canton of Berne. From the beginning of her career in the 1980’s, Cynthia Dunning Thierstein was always very interested in the theory of archaeology and its management. She reorganised the Archaeological Service of the Canton of Bern to make this institution, which is responsible for all archaeological work from the inventory to the public relations, a more efficient and sustainable enterprise. Since 1998 Cynthia Dunning Thierstein has actively taken part in the management of the Europae Archaeologiae Concilium (EAC), a non-governmental association bringing together the managers of archaeological heritage in Europe, organising international meetings defining the problems of modern archaeology in Europe. In 2011, she founded ArchaeoConcept. Cynthia Dunning Thierstein is also member of numerous national and international associations (ICOMOS, ICOM, EAA, AS, ARS, AGUS). She was vice-president of the association “Palafittes” for the Inscription to the World Heritage of the Pile-dwellings around the Alps and was a member of the board of “Archéologie Suisse”. In 2012, she completed her MAS in Cultural Management at the University of Basel. She is also an accredited ICOMOS expert for World Heritage nominations and an active ICAHM member. At the EAA, she created together with Annemarie Willems the Community “Archaeology and Toursim”. In 2015 and 2016, she developed the management plan for the World Heritage nomination of Sharjah: Gateway to the Trucial States (UAE) and is currently working on the World Heritage nomination for the Cultural landscape of the Central Region in the Emirate of Sharjah (UAE). She is also working on valorization projects in Switzerland, such as www.site-of-the-month.ch or the enhancement of the archaeological landscape around the castle of Fenis Hasenburg in the canton of Bern.
Ellinor Dunning is project coordinator for ArchaeoConcept since November 2015. She successfully completed her Master of Arts in Prehistoric Archaeology at the University of Neuchâtel (2016). Her master thesis work focuses on the enhancement of archaeological sites in Switzerland: she analyses the processes of heritage development on the basis of a comparative empirical study of three enhancement projects and a fundamental theoretical reflection. This work has earned her the Jéquier Prize, which rewards published or deserving publication work of interest to the Neuchâtel region or promoting archaeological research at the University of Neuchâtel. She obtained her Bachelor of Arts in Archaeology and Ethnology, also at the University of Neuchâtel (2012). In addition, she completed a semester of her Master’s degree in Germany (Erasmus, 2015) at the University of Halle an der Saale (Saxony-Anhalt). Ellinor Dunning has already worked for ArchaeoConcept as an intern, between August 2012 and June 2013; she has carried out several excavation and prospecting internships in France (Auvergne, Lot, Tarn) and Sudan (Kerma); she has also worked occasionally as a cultural mediator at the Neues Museum Biel (NMB). With Cynthia Dunning, she developed the management plan for the World Heritage nomination of the “Sharjah Gateway to the Trucial States” dossier and is now working on the nomination of the “The Cultural Landscape of the Central Region in the Emirate of Sharjah (UAE)” dossier. She is also currently employed by the University of Neuchâtel to work on an SNSF AGORA science communication project. This project, entitled Heritage Emotions, aims to communicate the emotions that link us to the Swiss archaeological heritage. It will lead to the setting up of a participatory exhibition of vernacular photographs that will open in May 2019 at the Laténium. Her main interests lie in the development of a social archaeology whose values are shared and co-constructed. She is also interested in the processes of production and transmission of so-called “legitimate” knowledge as well as in archaeological knowledge known as “alternative”.
She is president of the ArchaeoTourism association.
Camille Aeschimann works at ArchaeoConcept on the “Salons archéologiques” project as an anthropologist and project collaborator. After completing a Bachelor’s degree in ethnology and human geography, she completed a Master’s degree in social sciences and anthropology at the University of Neuchâtel. During her Master’s degree, she specialized in issues related to social action and public policy. His interest is in projects led by NGOs or associations that aim at forms of social change. In 2016, she completed a five-month ethnographic field in Uganda with a local NGO. Shestudied the implementation of a participatory human rights project with village communities in the west of the country (Bunyoro). She also currently manages the organisation of excursions and the archaeological fair for the EAA’s annual meeting to be held in 2019 in Bern.
Aurélia Basterrechea has been a scientific collaborator at ArchaeoConcept since May 2017. She holds a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from the University of Neuchâtel and continues her studies by specializing in pre- and protohistoric archaeology with a second Master’s degree. Interested in the enhancement and transmission of heritage, she wrote her first critical thesis questioning the enhancement of the archaeological heritage of Sion in Valais. At the same time, she is a member of the committee of the Association Valaisanne d’Archéologie and the Association des Jeunes Archéologues de Martigny, where she leads workshops and gives archaeology courses in primary classes in Valais in the summer of 2016. She participated in several excavation campaigns in the canton of Vaud, Valais and Kerma in Sudan with the Swiss Archaeological Mission. In 2018, it joined the archaeological survey campaign conducted by the RAHMA association on the Valaisan passes. She continues her museum work, in particular with the Neues Museum Biel (NMB) and the AGORA project for the travelling exhibition Ice Age Panorama with the University of Neuchâtel. Within ArchaeoConcept, she mainly manages the Sites of the Month project but also carries out research on popular science via digital platforms such as Youtube and social networks. She also volunteers at the various events organized as part of the Sites of the Month and organizes the excursions.
Lauriane Vieli completed a ten-month internship at ArchaeoConcept from August 2015 to June 2016, during which she participated in numerous projects. She was thus able to complete her training at both the technical and theoretical level. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Archaeology from the University of Neuchâtel and has been pursuing her Master’s degree in Prehistoric Archaeology since spring 2016. Her master thesis concerns the Study of the Pile-dwelling site of the final Neolithic period of Montilier/Dorfmatte II, excavation of 2004 (Fribourg, Switzerland). As part of an Erasmus program, in 2017, she studied for one year at the Musée national d’Histoire naturelle de Paris (MNHN, France). After this year of study abroad, Lauriane is working again at ArchaeoConcept. In parallel with her studies, she completed a six-month part-time internship at the Archaeological Service of Fribourg (SAEF) as well as surveys and research cataloguing Switzerland’s rock shelters. She has also done excavatons in the canton of Fribourg, the Marne and Rozel (France), Sicily (Italy) and Kerma (Sudan). Lauriane worked as a guardian and guide for the SAEF temporary exhibition for a year and a half. Since 2014, she has been elected to the Archeo-Fribourg-Freiburg Committee.
Stephanie Hug has been working at ArchaeoConcept as a scientific collaborator since January 2018. She also works in archaeological object management at the Archaeological Service of the Canton of Zurich. She completed her Bachelor’s degree in General History and Prehistoric Archaeology at the University of Zurich in the spring of 2017. She is currently working on her Master’s degree on the subject of Early Iron Age settlements in the Canton of Berne, which she will probably obtain in autumn 2020. In addition, she has worked on archaeological excavations both in Switzerland and abroad. Within ArchaeoConcept, she is in charge of the translation and is responsible for the German-speaking management of the Site of the Month project since early 2018. In addition, she accompanies Cynthia Dunning in her research on Ins (canton of Bern).