Junko Habu

Junko Habu

Professor |Archaeology
Office: 208 ARF, Lab: 314 Kroeber
Office: 643-2645, Lab: 643-2837
Office Hours
Tues, 3:30-4:30pm in 203 ARF; Fri, 10-11am in 134 Kroeber

Current/Future Courses

Archaeology of East Asia 

Fall 2017 |Undergraduate

Special Topics: Environmental Anthropology

Spring 2017 |Undergraduate

Special Interests

Archaeology and anthropology of hunter-gatherers and small-scale societies; human-environmental dynamics; sedentism; landscape archaeology; sociopolitics of archaeology; climate change; local and global environmental issues; Japan, East Asia and the North Pacific Rim.


Using the theoretical framework of historical ecology, my current research focuses on the importance of food and subsistence diversity, social networks and local autonomy for understanding the resilience of socioeconomic systems in the past and the present. My archaeological projects in Japan, including the Berkeley Sannnai Maruyama Projectand the Goshizawa Matsumori Project, examine the mechanisms of long-term culture change among prehistoric Jomon hunter-gatherers (ca. 14,000-500 BC). My research also involves ethnographic studies of modern-day rural communities and small-scale food production units, with an emphasis on the importance of traditional ecological knowledge reflected in material culture. As an environmental anthropologist focusing on Japan, I have also been working on the study of the impacts of the Great East Japan Earthquake of March 11, 2011 and the Fukushima Nuclear Accident. In collaboration with local stakeholders, I use insights obtained from these projects to develop outreach and implementation programs to promote place-based, small-scale and diversified food production.

For more information, please visit www.junkohabu.com



Growing up in Yokoyama City, Japan, I received my BA (1982) and MA (1984) from the Department of Archaeology and Ethnology at Keio University, Tokyo. After working as a full-time Research Associate at the Faculty of Science of the University of Tokyo (1984-1988), I went to Montreal and received my Ph.D. in Anthropology from McGill University in 1996. In the same year, I joined the Department of Anthropology of the University of California, Berkeley. I was a visiting professor/researcher at Keio University (2000, 2001), Research Institute for Humanity and Nature (RIHN)  (2010), and the Graduate University for Advanced Studies (2011) in Hayama, Japan. From Summer 2014 to Summer 2016, I took a research leave from UC Berkeley and led an international transdisciplinary project at RIHNtitled Long-term Sustainability through Place-Based, Small-scale Economies: Approaches from Historical Ecology.

Representative Publications


2016   Heron, C. P., J. Habu, M. K. Owens, Y. Ito, Y. Eley, A. Lucquin, A. Radini, H. Saul C. D. Spiteri, and O. E. Craig.

Molecular and isotopic investigations of pottery and ‘charred remains’ from Sannai Maruyama and Sannai Maruyama No. 9, Aomori Prefecture, Japan. Japanese Journal of Archaeology 4(1): 29-52. Link

2016    Crema, E. R., J. Habu, K. Kobayashi and M. Madella.

Summed probability distribution of 14C dates suggests regional divergences in the population dynamics of the Jomon Period in Eastern Japan. PLOS ONE 11(4): e0154809. Link

2014    Habu, J.

Post-Pleistocene transformations of hunter-gatherers in East Asia. PP507-520.  In Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology and Anthropology of Hunter-Gatherers, edited by Vicki Cummings, Peter Jordan and Marek Zvelebil. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Link | PDF

2014    Habu, J.

Early Sedentism in East Asia: From Late Palaeolithic to Early Agricultural Societies in Insular East Asia. In Cambridge World Prehistory, edited by C. Renfrew and P. Bahn, pp. 724-741. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 

2013    Habu, J. and M. E. Hall.

Climate change, human impacts on the landscape, and subsistence specialization: historical ecology and changes in Jomon hunter-gatherer lifeways. In The Historical Ecology of Small Scale Economies, edited by Victor D. Thompson and James Waggoner, pp. 65-78. University Press of Florida: Gainesville, FL. Link | PDF

2008    Habu, J., C. Fawcett and J. M. Matsunaga (eds.)

Evaluating Multiple Narratives: Beyond Nationalist, Colonialist, Imperialist Archaeologies. 217pp.  Springer, New York.

2008  Habu, J.

Settlement growth and decline in complex hunter-gatherer societies: a case study from the Jomon period Sannai Maruyama site.  Antiquity 82: 571-584.

2004  Habu, J.

Ancient Jomon of Japan.  332pp.  Cambridge University Press, Cambridge