Heuristic Approaches to Spatial Analysis in Archaeology

Keith W. Kintigh, Albert J. Ammerman

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

118 Scopus citations


This article discusses an approach to spatial analysis which is more closely tailored to archaeological objectives and archaeological data than are more "traditional" quantitative techniques such as nearest neighbor analysis. Heuristic methods, methods which make use of the problem context and which are guided in part by intuitively derived "rules," are discussed in general and with reference to the problem of spatial analysis in archaeology. A preliminary implementation of such a method is described and applied to artificial settlement data and artifact distributions from the Magdalenian camp of Pincevent. Finally, the prospects for further development of heuristic methods are elaborated.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)31-63
Number of pages33
JournalAmerican Antiquity
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 1 1982

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • History
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Archaeology
  • Museology


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