Peter Siegel, PhD
Steering Committee Member
Peter E. Siegel, Professor and Chair of Anthropology at MSU, and one of the leading scholars in Caribbean archaeology, has worked in the region for 30 years. Prior to joining the MSU faculty, he worked for 14 years in the applied sector of heritage management. He has conducted archaeological projects throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions of the United States, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, the Lesser Antilles, and South America.
Dr. Siegel's research has focused most directly on sociopolitical organization and issues of complexity on Puerto Rico and the Greater Antilles. Since 2007, he has led an interdisciplinary team of researchers in paleoecology and archaeology to address human-land relations in the pre-Hispanic and early colonial Caribbean. His project in Caribbean historical ecology is providing an important interpretive context to understanding interactions between resident and colonizing populations and changes in human-environmental relations through the Holocene. Ultimately, this research will provide a framework to better understand the dramatic social and political changes that occurred over seven millennia of human occupations in the Caribbean.
Siegel has been a senior Fulbright scholar at Leiden University, Holland, working with the Leiden Caribbean Research Group for a semester. He was also awarded a Leiden University Faculty of Archaeology fellowship to work with the Caribbean Research Group for a follow-up semester.