Dr. Christina Cheung

I am an archaeologist with a strong background in bioarchaeology, specializing in using stable isotope methods to address a range of interrelated anthropological and archaeological questions. I am particularly interested in issues such as gender, social differentiation/inequalities, subsistence economies, migration, cultural changes, and human/environment relationships. Over the past 10 years, I have been involved in archaeological projects spanning wide temporal and geographical ranges, including Neolithic Iran, Neolithic France, Bronze Age China, Roman Britain, Pre-contact Fiji, and many more. 


  • B.A. (Hons) Archaeology/ History 2008, University of York, UK
  • M.Sc. Archaeological Science 2009, University of Oxford, UK
  • Research assistant 2010, Københavns Universitet, Denmark
  • Ph.D. Anthropology 2016, University of British Columbia, Canada
  • Postdoctoral Fellow/Laboratory manager 2019, Simon Fraser University, Canada
  • Postdoctoral Fellow 2021, Muséum National d'Histoire Naturelle, France

Key Research Interests

  • Bioarchaeology
  • Bulk tissue stable isotope analysis (C, N, S)
  • Compound specific isotope analysis
  • Embedded socio-cultural and political meanings in past food practices
  • Stable isotope mixing models
  • Big data analysis in archaeology

Main Publications

  • Cheung C., Szpak P. 2021. Interpreting Past Human Diets Using Stable Isotope Mixing Models – Best Practices for Data Acquisition. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory (Online First).
  • Merrett D.C., Cheung C., Meiklejohn C., Richards M.P. 2021. Stable Isotope Analysis of Human Bones from Ganj Dareh, Iran, ca. 10,000 cal. BC. PLoS One 16(3): e0247569
  • Cheung C., Szpak P. 2020. Interpreting Past Human Diets Using Stable Isotope Mixing Models. Journal of Archaeological Method and Theory (Online First).
  • Guiry E.J., Orchard T.J., Royle T.C.A., Cheung C., Yang D.Y. 2020. Dietary Plasticity and the Extinction of the Passenger Pigeon (Ectopistes migratorius). Quaternary Science Reviews 223: 106225
  • Cheung C., Zhang H., Hepburn J.C., Yang D.Y., Richards M.P. 2019. Stable Isotope and Dental Caries Data Reveal Abrupt Changes in Subsistence Economy in Ancient China in Response to Global Climate Change. PLoS ONE 14(7): e0218943
  • Cheung C., Burley D.V., Phaff B., Richards M.P. 2018. A Palaeomobility Study of a Multi-Period Site at Sigatoka, Fiji, Using Strontium Isotope Analysis. Journal of Archaeological Sciences: Reports 17: 762-774
  • Cheung C., Jing Z.C., Tang J.G., Richards M.P. 2017. Social Dynamics in Early Bronze Age China: A Multi-Isotope Approach. Journal of Archaeological Sciences: Reports 16: 90-101
  • Cheung C., Jing Z.C., Tang J.G., Weston D.A., Richards M.P. 2017. Diets, Social Roles, and Geographical Origins of Sacrificial Victims at the Royal Cemetery in Yinxu, Shang China: New Evidence from Stable Carbon and Nitrogen Isotope Analysis. Journal of Anthropological Archaeology 48: 28-45
  • Cheung C., Jing Z.C., Tang J.G., Yue Z.W., Richards M.P. 2017. Examining Social and Cultural Differentiation in Late Bronze Age China using Stable Isotope Analysis and Mortuary Patterns of Human Remains at Xin’anzhuang, Yinxu. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 9(5): 799-816
  • Cheung C., Schroeder H., Hedges R.E.M. 2012. Diet, Social Differentiation and Cultural Change in Roman Britain: New Isotopic Evidence from Gloucestershire. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences 4: 61-73



Pleinlaan 2
1050 Brussel