Institute of Archaeology


Efthymia Nikita - Honorary Research Associate

Efthymia Nikita
  • Honorary Research Associate
  • BA, PhD
  • Email: e.nikita@cyi.ac.cy
  • UCL Institute of Archaeology, 31-34 Gordon Square, London WC1H 0PY UK

I am a bioarchaeologist with a background in Archaeology (BA, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki) and Biological Anthropology (PhD, University of Cambridge). My research seeks to provide insights into the daily life, activity, mobility, demography, health, and diet of past populations using macroscopic, microscopic, and biochemical methods. My projects span North Africa and the Eastern Mediterranean from prehistoric to medieval times.

In addition, I work towards refining current osteological methodology for biodistance analysis, skeletal activity markers and age estimation. My research has received funding by European and American foundations and it has resulted in over 45 publications. My teaching experience includes classes on bioarchaeology, human evolution and applied statistics in the UK and Greece. In addition, I have authored the textbook Osteoarchaeology: A Guide to the Macroscopic Study of Human Skeletal Remains (Academic Press, 2017).

Research Interests

  • Bioarchaeology
  • Human Osteology
  • Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology
  • Forensic Anthropology

I am collaborating with Dr Corisande Fenwick, Lecturer in Mediterranean Archaeology at the Institute of Archaeology, UCL, in the Tunisian-British Project at Bulla Regia (Tunisia) as well as the Volubilis Project (Morocco). In both projects I am responsible for the study and publication of the human skeletal remains, addressing questions of mobility and life quality. In this direction, I am working closely with Dr Samantha Cox, who is primarily in charge of the excavation of this material. The skeletal remains from the aforementioned sites date to the Late Antique and Medieval times and their study, coupled with historical and other archaeological lines of evidence, is expected to shed new light to the impact of the Arab conquest and the spread of Islam on Medieval society in North Africa.


Selected recent publications

  • Nikita, E., Michopoulou, E. (2018). A quantitative approach for sex estimation based on cranial morphology. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 165: 507-517.
  • Nikita, E. (2017). Osteoarchaeology: A Guide to the Macroscopic Study of Human Skeletal Remains. San Diego: Academic Press.
  • Oikonomopoulou, E.-K., Valakos, E., Nikita, E. (2017). Population-specificity of sexual dimorphism in cranial and pelvic traits: evaluation of existing and proposal of new functions for sex assessment in a Greek assemblage. International Journal of Legal Medicine 131:1731-1738.
  • Radini, A., Nikita, E., Buckley, S, Copeland, L, Hardy, K. (2017). Beyond Food: The multiple pathways for inclusion of materials into ancient dental calculus. American Journal of Physical Anthropology Suppl. 63: 71-83.
  • Nikita, E., Triantaphyllou, S. (2017) Human osteoarchaeology in Greece: research themes, challenges and potential. Archaeological Reports 63: 63-75.
  • Nikita, E. (2015). A critical review of the Mean Measure of Divergence and Mahalanobis Distances using artificial data and new approaches to estimate biodistances from nonmetric traits. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 157: 284-294.
  • Nikita, E. (2014). The use of generalized linear models and generalized estimating equations in bioarchaeological studies. American Journal of Physical Anthropology 153: 473-483.