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European Collaboration Launches for Funnel Beaker Culture Project

10 October 2023

The Groningen Institute of Archaeology is partnering with the German Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe and the provinces of Overijssel and Gelderland in the 'Funnel Beaker Culture' project, a venture in the field of archaeological heritage management.

Text: Marjolein te Winkel

Funnel Beaker Culture

In the period 4000-2700 BCE, the Funnel Beaker Culture extended from the Netherlands to West Ukraine. This culture derives its name from the characteristic pottery form of that era, the funnel beaker. Archaeologically, there is no boundary between the Netherlands and Germany concerning this culture, but modern borders may impose limitations on archaeological collaboration.

Project Objective

The collaboration is coordinated by the province of Overijssel. Deputy Gert Harm ten Bolscher states, "This project marks a significant milestone in the collaboration between the Netherlands and Germany in the field of archaeological heritage management and aims to preserve and share our joint cultural heritage." There are three key pillars within this project: knowledge sharing, knowledge dissemination, and identifying and removing strategic, policy, and legal barriers to cross-border collaboration.

Sharing knowledge

The collaborative partners join forces to integrate knowledge about the Funnel Beaker Culture on both sides of the border into a shared scientific foundation. The Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe leads this effort. A database is being constructed as a common structure, bringing together data from sites and findings on both sides of the border, providing valuable information to both scientists and the public. After the project, the database will also be made available to other regions.

Prof. dr. Daan Raemaekers is involved in the project. Together with his German colleagues from Münster, he will shape the research database. Additionally, he will publish the research findings in a scientific article. "The collaboration in this project helps us gather and analyze scattered information. It is an exciting period and a fascinating region. At the periphery of the vast area of the Funnel Beaker Culture, there is little insight into which landscapes were inhabited and when the habitation began. We anticipate that this project will provide insights that can complement our understanding, which is heavily based on the study of dolmens."

Knowledge Dissemination

Knowledge about the Funnel Beaker Culture will be made accessible to a broad audience through a book, a traveling exhibition, and an event. Young people are involved in the development of these activities. All project partners contribute to this knowledge dissemination, and the activities will be promoted through various channels to reach the public.


There is European funding available from the Interreg programme. Collaborative partners include the province of Gelderland, the University of Groningen, and the German Landschaftsverband Westfalen-Lippe. The goal of the Interreg programme is to stimulate European cooperation and overcome border barriers. The project runs from October 2023 to October 2026 and is carried out under the Interreg VI programme Deutschland-Nederland. It is co-financed with €414,878.71 by the European Union and MWIKE NRW, as well as the provinces of Overijssel, Groningen, and Gelderland.

Last modified:02 May 2024 2.28 p.m.
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