Oriental Institute

The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago is an interdisciplinary research center whose goal is to integrate archaeological, textual, and art historical data to understand the development and functioning of the ancient civilizations of the Near East from the earliest Holocene through the Medieval period.

We achieve this by conducting archaeological excavations, artifact analyses, the development of new research methodologies, the stewardship of systematic museum collections, philological studies, historical research, and the development of dictionaries of ancient languages. One of the great strengths of the Oriental Institute’s archaeological program is its vast regional coverage across geopolitical boundaries and its time depth; experts in Mesopotamian, Syro-Palestinian, Anatolian, Iranian, Egyptian, and Nubian archaeology and textual studies all work in the same building to offer research, teaching, and field projects for the entire Near East. This critical mass of scholarship in complementary disciplines is unmatched anywhere in the world.