I study the development of social, cultural, and political landscapes in the Altiplano region of the Bolivian Andes and, more specifically, in the Upper Desaguadero River valley, a region known as Machaca. In particular, I'm interested in social dynamics and the emergence of inequality during the Formative (1500 BC - AD 500) and Tiwanaku (AD 500 - 1100) periods. My dissertation examined ceremonial dynamics at a Late Formative period (200 BC - AD 500) center called Khonkho Wankane. More recently I've studied the long term occupation of two sites located along the Desaguadero River, Iruhito and Cerro Chijcha. Methodologically, I specialize in spatial analysis and I've dabbled a bit in ceramic analysis and iconography. Prior to working in Bolivia I participated in field research in Egypt, Ecuador, Belize, and England and I've also worked for various Cultural Resource Management firms on projects throughout the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast US. I studied at the University of California, Riverside, where I worked with Wendy Ashmore, who was my dissertation adviser, Tom Patterson, and Karl Taube. I completed my Ph.D. in 2009 and joined the faculty here at F&M in 2010.
Ph.D. and M.A., University of California, Riverside
B.A., Drew University
I am an anthropological archaeologist focused on the development of social complexity and the origins of inequality during the Formative and Tiwanaku periods in the prehistoric Lake Titicaca Basin of western Bolivia.
Books and Monographs
2016 Scott C. Smith. Landscape and Politics in the Ancient Andes: Biographies of Place at Khonkho Wankane. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico Press.
2012 Scott C. Smith. Generative Landscapes: The Step Mountain Motif in Tiwanaku Iconography. Ancient America monograph series, no. 12. Barnardsville, NC: Boundary End Archaeology Research Center.
2008 Scott C. Smith. Basic Introduction to Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Archaeology. Sociedad de Arqueología de La Paz, La Paz, Bolivia. Available at http://www.arqueobolivia.com. (Spanish)
2019 Erik J. Marsh, Andrew Roddick, Maria C. Bruno, Scott C. Smith, John W. Janusek, and Christine Hastorf. Temporal Inflection Points in Decorated Ceramics: A Bayesian Refinement of Late Formative Chronology in the Southern Lake Titicaca Basin, Bolivia. Latin American Antiquity 30(4):798-817.
2017 Adolfo E. Pérez Arias, Maribel Pérez Arias, and Scott C. Smith, De la Muerte a la Inmortalidad: El Ritual Funerario en la Cuenca Sur del Lago Titicaca. Textos Antropológicos 18(1):123-140.
2015 Scott C. Smith and Maribel Pérez Arias, From Bodies to Bones: Death and Mobility in the Lake Titicaca Basin, Bolivia. Antiquity 89 (343):106-121.
2014 Scott C. Smith and John W. Janusek, Political Mosaics and Networks: Tiwanaku Expansion into the Upper Desaguadero Valley, Bolivia. World Archaeology 46 (5):681-704.
2014 Scott C. Smith, Maribel Pérez Arias, Adolfo Pérez Arias, and Andrea Flores Pérez, Long-term Occupation of Cerro Chijcha, Upper Desaguadero Valley, Bolivia. Ñawpa Pacha 34 (1): 107-116.
2011 Scott C. Smith, La Arquitectura del Formativo Tardío en Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia. Nuevos Aportes, no.5:71-98.
2002 Gair Tourtellot, Marc Wolf, Scott C. Smith, Kristin Gardella, and Norman Hammond, Exploring Heaven on Earth: Testing the Cosmological Model at La Milpa, Belize. Antiquity 76:633-634.
2018 Alexei Vranich and Scott C. Smith, “Nighttime Sky and Early Urbanism in the High Andes.” In The Archaeology of the Night, edited by Nancy Gonlin and April Nowell, 121-138. University Press of Colorado, Boulder, CO.
2018 Christopher P. Dayton, Patrick Ryan Williams, Benjamin R. Vining, and Scott C. Smith, “Geophysical Investigations at Khonkho Wankane.” In Khonkho Wankane: Archaeological Investigations in Jesus de Machaca, Bolivia. Contributions of the Archaeological Research Facility, no. 68. Berkeley: University of California.
2013 Scott C. Smith, “Late Formative Period Spatial Organization at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” In Advances in Titicaca Basin Archaeology - 2, edited by Alexei Vranich and Abigail Levine. Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, University of California Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA
2016 Scott C. Smith, “Review of At Home with the Sapa Inca: Architecture, Space, and Legacy at Chinchero by Stella Nair.” American Anthropologist 118 (2): 439-440.
2018 “Ceremonial Waterscapes: The Desaguadero River in Antiquity.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology 83rd Annual Meeting, April 11-15, 2018, Washington D.C.
2017 “Rethinking the Middle Formative to Late Formative Transition in the Southern Lake Titicaca Basin: New Data from Iruhito, Bolivia.” With Adolfo Pérez, Maribel Pérez, and John W. Janusek. Poster presented at the Institute of Andean Studies, 57th Annual Meeting, January 6 and 7, 2017, Berkeley, CA.
2015 “The Politics of Connectivity at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 80th Annual Meeting, April 15-19, 2015, San Francisco, CA.
2014 “Political Landscapes of the Upper Desaguadero River Valley, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 79th Annual Meeting, April 23-27, 2014, Austin, TX.
2014 “Tiwanaku Political Strategy in the Upper Desaguadero Valley, Bolivia.” Poster presented at the Institute of Andean Studies, 54th Annual Meeting, January 10 and 11, 2014, Berkeley, CA.
2013 “Circulatory Landscapes of the South-Central Andes.” Paper presented at the European Association of Archaeologists, 19th Annual Meeting, September 5 – 8, Plzen, Czech Republic.
2013 “Early Ceremonialism at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” With Maribel Pérez Arias. Paper presented at the Institute for Andean Studies, 53rd Annual Meeting, January 11 and 12, 2013, Berkeley, CA.
2011 “Ceremonialism and the Social Relations of Production during the Late Formative Period (200BC – AD500) in the Southern Lake Titicaca Basin, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 76th Annual Meeting, March 30-April 3, 2011, Sacramento, CA.
2010 “Iruhito: A Rural Riverside Community in the Tiwanaku Heartland.” With Adolfo Pérez Arias and Maribel Pérez Arias. Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 75th Annual Meeting, April 14-18, St. Louis, Missouri.
2009 “Venerable Geographies.” Invited presentation at Drew University, December 7th, Madison, New Jersey.
2009 “Experiencing Religion at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia: Ceramics and Architecture at a Late Formative Period Ritual Center.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 74th Annual Meeting, April 22-26, Atlanta, Georgia.
2009 “Reconstruction of Architectural Change and its Applicability for Monumental Sites: Methods and Techniques.” Invited paper presented at the first annual UNESCO archaeological workshop at Tiwanaku, July 24-27, Tiwanaku, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2009 “Total Stations and Techniques for Mapping: Theory, Practice, and Applications.” Invited presentation at the first annual UNESCO archaeological workshop at Tiwanaku, July 24-27, Tiwanaku, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2007 “Constructing Ideological Relationships: Architecture at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the symposium El Centro Ceremonial de Khonkho Wankane: Investigaciones Recientes y Perspectivas Emergentes sponsored by the Faculty of Social Sciences at the Universidad Mayor de San Andrés and the Museo Nacional de Arqueología, June 22, La Paz, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2007 “Introduction to GIS.” Introductory presentation at the invited workshop Introducción Básica a GIS para Arqueología sponsored by the Sociedad de Arqueología de La Paz, May 30th, La Paz, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2007 “Spatial Practices and the Constitution of a Late Formative Built Environment: Architecture at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 72nd Annual Meeting, April 25-29, Austin, Texas.
2006 “Social Organization and Architectural Change at Khonkho Wankane.” Paper presented at the Sociedad de Arqueología de La Paz, First Annual Meeting, October 19-21, La Paz, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2006 “Architecture and Activities at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” Paper presented at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Advanced Seminar Contending Visions of Tiwanaku, May 19-21, Los Angeles, California.
2006 “Social and Spatial Disjunction: Landscape, Politics, and Memory during the Late Formative at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” With Arik Ohnstad and John Janusek. Paper presented at the Society for American Archaeology, 71st Annual Meeting, April 26-30, San Juan, Puerto Rico.
2006 “Investigating Spatial Patterns at Khonkho Wankane, Bolivia.” Invited presentation to the Department of Anthropology, Vanderbilt University, March 17th, Nashville, Tennessee.
2005 “Topography and Architecture of Khonkho Wankane.” Invited presentation at the bi-national symposium Revalorando el Sitio de Khonkho Wankane, August 13th, Qhunqhu Liquiliqui, Bolivia. (Spanish)
2004 “Implementing GIS at Loma de los Cangrejitos, Ecuador.” Paper presented at the 24th Annual James C. Young Colloquium, February 7th, Riverside, California.
2003 “Moving Dirt: Platform Mound Construction and the Rise of Social Complexity at Loma de los Cangrejitos, Ecuador.” With Maria Masucci and Franklin Fuentes. Submitted for presentation at the Society for American Archaeology, 68th Annual Meeting, March 30th – April 3rd, Salt Lake City, Utah.
2003 “Mapping and Survey Methodology.” Invited presentation and workshop for the Department of Anthropology and the Department of Classics, Drew University, March 15th, Madison, New Jersey.
2002 “GIS Applications in Archaeology.” Invited presentation to the Department of Anthropology, Drew University, October 15th, Madison, New Jersey.
CNX202: Learning from the Past - People and the Environment
ANT102: Introduction to Archaeology
ANT253: Andean Archaeology
ANT257: People and Cultures of the Andes
ANT301: Archaeologies of Inequality
ANT360: Spatial Archaeology
ANT411: Archaeological Methods