Biography

Dr. Branting is an archaeologist with specializations in the ancient Middle East and geospatial science and has worked on archaeological projects around the world. He holds advanced degrees in archaeology and geography from the University at Buffalo and the University of Chicago. For ten years he served as the Director of the Center for Middle Eastern Landscapes (CAMEL) at the Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago. He is also a founding member of the UCF COS GIS Cluster.
He directs the Kerkenes Project in central Turkey, an enormous ancient city that was built around 600 BC by the Phrygians of King Midas fame and destroyed around 547 BC during the rise of the Persian Empire under Cyrus the Great. The Kerkenes Project seeks to understand this ancient city, and aspects of other cities by comparison, through excavations, remote sensing, and advanced simulations. The Kerkenes fieldsite is home to ongoing UCF Study Abroad programs and field schools in archaeology and geospatial technologies. Dr. Branting is also involved in using satellite images to monitor cultural heritage sites from space and is developing Augmented Reality software for the collection of field data.