Landscapes bear traces of the use of resources over long periods. These reflect not
only ways of using, shaping, organising, controlling and exchanging resources, but
also knowledge, perceptions, motivations for actions and related social dynamics.
Resources can be material as well as immaterial and constitute the basis for the
development and decline of societies. They are usually not exploited in isolation,
but as parts of complexes whose specific constellation in time and space can be best
described as assemblages.
This topic was the subject of the session ‘Human-Made Environments: The
Development of Landscapes as Resource Assemblages’ held at the 24th Annual Meeting
of the European Association of Archaeologists (Barcelona, 5–8 September 2018) and
forms the basis of this volume. The general purpose is a debate on new concepts
of the interrelation of social dynamics and resource use and a discussion of case
studies in which landscapes were shaped to facilitate the utilisation of resources. The
identification of what has been considered to be a resource is discussed as well as the
means through which the corresponding landscapes were transformed and the results
of these transformations. This implies not only material, but also spiritual aspects
linked to the exploitation of resources. Since ResourceAssemblages are products of
historical evolution and mutual relations the mechanisms of these processes are of
great significance. Supreme aspects comprise the detection of a conscious human
formation of landscapes in order to suit the exploitation of resources, the connected
social practices as well as socio-cultural dynamics linked to the use of resources.