Profile picture of Alison Carter

Alison Carter

Associate Professor
Phone: 541-346-5037
Office: 255 Condon Hall
Office Hours: Mon and Wed 11am-12 Noon or by appointment
Research Interests: Southeast Asian Archaeology, Compositional analysis of artifacts, bead studies


PhD, University of Wisconsin Madison - 2013

Research Interests

I am an anthropological archaeologist with an interest in the political economy and evolution of complex societies in Southeast Asia. I am currently Principal Investigator and Co-Director of Pteah Cambodia (ProjecT Excavating Ancient Households), a project investigating Pre-Angkorian, Angkorian, and Post-Angkorian residential spaces in Battambang Province. Other research interests include the archaeology of East and South Asia, materials analysis and LA‐ICP­‐MS, craft technology and specialization, ritual and religion, trade and exchange, and bead studies. 


Selected Publications


Carter, Alison K., Miriam Stark, Rachna Chhay, and Piphal Heng. “The Angkorian House” in, The Angkorian World, edited by Mitch Hendrickson, Miriam T. Stark, and Damian Evans. Routledge, London, pp. 494-507.


Carter, Alison K., Dougald O’Reilly, Louise Shewan, Laure Dussubieux. “Northwest Cambodia and the Mekong Interaction Sphere: Glass and Stone beads from Lovea, Phum Sophy, and Prei Khmeng.” BEADS: The Journal of the Soceity of Bead Researchers 34: 77-95.

Carter, Alison K., Laure Dussubieux, Thomas Fenn, Thanik Lertcharnrit, T.O. Pryce. “Th exchange of beads in Central Thailand in the protohistoric period: Glass objects from Phromthin Tai” in The Elemental Analysis of Glass beads: Technology, Chronology and Exchange edited by Laure Dussubieux and Heather Walder, Leuven University Press, pp. 161-176. Leuven Belgium.

Carter, Alison K., Elliot Blair, Carla Klehm, and Lee Panich. “Glass beads and human pasts” in The Elemental Analysis of Glass beads: Technology, Chronology and Exchange edited by Laure Dussubieux and Heather Walder, Leuven University Press, pp. 37-54. Leuven Belgium.

Carter, Alison K., Miriam Stark, Cristina Cobo Castillo, Piphal Heng, Yijie Zhuang, and Rachna Chhay. “Prasat and Pteah: Habitation in Angkor Wat’s Temple Enclosure.” Archaeological Research in Asia 32, 100405

Carter, Alison K. Building from the Ground Up: The Archaeology of Residential Spaces and Communities in Southeast Asia. Journal of Archaeological Research


Carter, Alison K., Sarah Klassen, Miriam Stark, Piphal Heng, Martin Polkinghorne, and Damian Evans. “The Evolution of Agro-Urbanism: A Case study from Angkor, Cambodia.”  Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 63, 101323.

Klassen, Sarah, Alison K. Carter, Scott Ortman, Miriam T. Stark, Alyssa Loyless, Martin Polkinghorne, Piphal Heng, Michael Hill, Pelle Wijker, Jonathan Niles-Weed, Gary P. Marriner, Christophe Pottier, and Roland Fletcher. “Diachronic modeling of the population within the medieval Greater Angkor Region settlement complex.” Science Advances 7 May 2021

Carter, Alison K., Laure Dussubieux, Miriam T. Stark, and H. Albert Gilg. “Angkor Borei and Protohistoric Trade Networks: A View from the Glass and Stone Bead Assemblage.” Asian Perspectives 60, (1): 32-70.


Castillo, Cristina, Alison K. Carter, Eleanore Kingwell-Banham, Yijie Zhuang, Alison Weisskopf, Rachna Chhay, Piphal Heng, Dorian Q Fuller and Miriam Stark. “The Khmer Did Not Live by Rice Alone.” Archaeological Research in Asia 24, 100213.


Carter, Alison K., Miriam T. Stark, Seth Quintus, Yijie Zhuang, Hong Wang, Piphal Heng and Rachna Chhay, “Temple occupation and the tempo of collapse at Angkor Wat, Cambodia.” Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences 116(25):12226-12231.


Carter, Alison K., Piphal Heng, Miriam Stark, and Rachna Chhay. “Urbanism and residential patterning at Angkor.” Journal of Field Archaeology 43(6): 492-506.

Carter, Alison K., Barbara Campbell Cole, Quentin Lemasson, and Willemijn van Noord. “Tracing the trade of heirloom beads across zomia: A preliminary analysis of beads from the upland regions of northeast India and mainland Southeast Asia" in The Archaeology of Portable Art: Southeast Asian, Pacific, and Australian Perspectives, edited by Michelle C. Langley, Mirani Litster, Duncan Wright, and Sally K. May, pp. 49-67. Routledge, London.


Carter, Alison K., Laure Dussubieux, Martin Polkinghorne, Christophe Pottier. “Glass at Angkor: Evidence for exchange.” Accepted and published early online with Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences.

Carter, Alison K. and Nam C. Kim. “Globalization at the Dawn of History: The emergence of global cultures in the Mekong and Red River Deltas” in The Routledge Handbook of Archaeology and Globalization edited by Tamar Hodos, pp. 730-750.


Carter, Alison K. “The Production and Consumption of Stone and Glass Beads in Southeast Asia from 500 BCE to the early second millennium CE: An assessment of the work of Peter Francis in light of recent research.” Archaeological Research in Asia, 6: 16-29.

Carter, Alison K. and Laure Dussubieux. “Geologic Provenience Analysis of Agate and Carnelian Beads Using Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS).” Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 6: 321-331.

Carter, Alison K., Laure Dussubieux, and Nancy Beavan. “Glass beads from 15- 17th century CE jar burial sites in Cambodia’s Cardamom Mountains.” Archaeometry 58 (3): 401-412. 


Stark, Miriam, Damian Evans, Chhay Rachna, Heng Piphal, and Alison K. Carter. “Residential patterning at Angkor Wat.” Antiquity 89: 1439-1455.

Carter, Alison K. “Beads, exchange networks, and emerging complexity: A case study from Cambodia and Thailand (500 BCE – CE 500).” Cambridge Archaeological Journal 25 (4): 733-757.