Fumie Iizuka

Adjunct Research Professor

Ph.D., University of Arizona, 2013


Grants on On-Going Projects

2022-2025 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant #2218884 (PI: F. Iizuka, Co-PI: M. Aldenderfer)

2018-2022 Japan Society for Promotion of Science Grant #17KK0028 (PI: F. Iizuka).

2017-2021 Japan Society for Promotion of Science Grant

#17K03213 (PI: F. Iizuka, Co-PI: M. Izuho)

2016 Mini-Grant (PI: Iizuka, Co-PI: M. Izuho) from the National Science Foundation grant #1912776 to the University of Missouri Research Reactor Center


Fumie Iizuka is an archaeologist studying decisions made by hunter-gatherers to adopt pottery and associated technology in response to climate and ecosystem changes and critically evaluates geochronology in these contexts. She has examined pre-ceramic to ceramic period transitions in Eastern Eurasia: Japan, Mongolia, and Siberian Russia. Her work builds on long-term research conducted on foraging and early farming societies in various areas of Latin America, especially in Panama, and with some emphasis in Colombia.

Iizuka’s expertise is ceramic analysis incorporating approaches developed in geology and materials science. By reconstructing the production processes and identifying diagenesis, she evaluates ceramic performance characteristics and producers’ intended functions. With the identification of pottery sources and distribution patterns, and by studying archaeological contexts, she assesses degrees of sedentism, mobility, and exchange. Iizuka collaborates with Quaternary scientists to reconstruct paleoenvironments to evaluate human response to climate change. She currently directs an archaeological excavation project on the late Pleistocene origins of pottery in southern Kyushu of southern Japan as the principal investigator receiving a grant from the National Science Foundation. Due to reliable tephrochronology, southern Kyushu is known to have the most regionally intact geochronology for the late Pleistocene ceramic-bearing occupations in East and Northeast Asia. In collaboration with colleagues (Director: Dr. Loren Davis), she furthermore tests the coastal migration model of the peopling of the Americas comparing the Upper Paleolithic North American contexts with those of hunter-gatherers of the late Pleistocene Northeast Asia. She investigates the timing of inferred migration and reasons for the absence of pottery in the late Pleistocene North American sites in this context.

Iizuka has published numerous peer-reviewed articles. She has presented in a variety of international meetings and invited lectures, and organized sessions. She holds a leadership role in the American Ceramic Society collaborating with scientists in the STEM fields. She is on the editorial board of a Springer book series, Interdisciplinary Contributions to Archaeology, and is a recommender for a new peer-reviewed preprint system, Peer Community In (PCI) Archaeology, based in Europe.

She is also an Editor of Quaternary Environments and Humans (QEH)a new open access journal of the International Union for Quaternary Research (INQUA)-Elsevier.

Select Publications

Edited Journal Special Issues

2022   Iizuka, F. & Terry, K. (Guest Editors). Old World Ceramic Origins and Behavioral Contexts from the Late Pleistocene to Mid-Holocene: Unresolved and New Problems. Quaternary International 608-609: 1-262 (published online, November 2021).

Journal Articles

In Press    Iizuka, F. & Carvajal-Contreras, D., Un Análisis Visual de Técnicas de Manufactura y Tecnología de la Cerámica del Sitio Puerto Hormiga, Colombia: Reconsideraciones Sobre las Observaciones de Reichel-Dolmatoff. Revista Arqueología y Patrimonio 1-2:9-29 (in Spanish).

2022  Davis, L., Madsen, D., Sisson, D., Valdivia-Becerra, L., Higham, T., Stueber, D., Bean, D., Nyers, A., Carroll, A., Ryder, C., Sponheimer, M., Izuho, M., Iizuka, F., Li, G., Epps, C. & Halford, F.K. Dating of a Large Tool Assemblage at the Cooper’s Ferry Site (Idaho, USA) to ~15,785 cal yr B.P. Extends the Age of Stemmed Points in the Americas. Science Advances 8(51): DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.ade1248.

2022  Iizuka, F., Ferguson, J. & Izuho, M., Late Pleistocene Pottery Production and Exchange: Provenance Studies of Hunter-Gatherer Wares from Southern Kyushu, Japan by Neutron Activation Analysis. PLOS One 17(3): e0265329. https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0265329

2022 Handa, N., Izuho, M., Takahashi, K., Iizuka, F., Tsogtbaatar, B., Gunchinsuren, B., Odsuren, D. & Ishtseren, L., The Woolly Rhino (Coelodonta Antiquitatis) from Ondorkhaan, Eastern Mongolia. Boreas. DOI: 10.1111/bor.12582.

2021  Iizuka, F. & Terry, K., (Editorial) Old World Ceramic Origins and Behavioral Contexts from the Late Pleistocene to Mid-Holocene: Unresolved and New Problems. Quaternary International 608-609: 1-7 (print issue: January 2022). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2021.10.002.

2021  Izuho, M., Iizuka, F., Buvit, I. & Konstantinov, M., Problems on the Age Determination of the Oldest Pottery Yielding Horizons at Studenoe 1 Site, Transbaikal (Southern Siberia). Quaternary International 608-609: 120-136 (print issue: January, 2022).https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2021.02.002.

2021  Iizuka, F., Vandiver, P., Morisaki, K., Izuho, M., Okita, J. & Aldenderfer, M.,Early Ceramic Technology and Variability from Kagoshima, Japan (No. 4): The Incipient Jomon Pottery from the Onigano, Nihonmatsu, and Okunonita Sites. Kagoshima Journal of Archaeology 50: 241-254 (in Japanese).

2020  Iizuka, F., Izuho, M., Wada, K., Barnard, H., Vandiver, P., Morisaki, K., Wendt, C. & Aldenderfer, M., Of the Sea and Volcano: A Petrographic Provenance Investigation of Locally Produced and Imported Ware of Pre-Younger Dryas Tanegashima Island, Japan. Quaternary International 608-609: 88-111 (print issue: January 2022). https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2020.10.009.

2020  Weber, M., Valencia, V., Caballero, J., Villada, B., Cardona, A. & Iizuka, F., U-Pb Dating of Zircon: A Sourcing Method for Pottery from the La Morena Archaeological Site, NW Colombia. Archaeometry 62(3):439-468. https://doi.org/10.1111/arcm.12532.

2019   Davis, L., Madsen, D., Becerra-Valdivia, L., Higham, T., Sisson, D., Skinner, S., Stueber, D., Nyers, A., Keen-Zebert, A., Neudorf, C., Cheyney, M., Izuho, M., Iizuka, F., Epps, C., Burns, S., Willis, S. & Buvit, I., Late Upper Paleolithic Occupation at Cooper’s Ferry, Idaho, USA, ~16,000 Years Ago. Science 365(6456): 891-897. http://doi.org/10.1126/science.aax9830.

2019    Iizuka, F., Izuho, M., Vandiver, P. & Aldenderfer, M., Early Pottery Technology and Variability fromKagoshima, Japan (No. 3): The Incipient Jomon Pottery from the Nakao and Mukaigakoijo-Ato Sites. From Jomon no Mori: Bulletin of Kagoshima Prefectural Archaeological Center 11: 33-52 (in Japanese).

2018    Iizuka, F., The Timing and Behavioral Context of the Late Pleistocene Adoption of Ceramics in Greater East and Northeast Asia and the First People (Without Pottery) in the Americas. PaleoAmerica 4(4): 267-324.https://doi.org/10.1080/20555563.2018.1563406.

2018   Iizuka, F., Izuho, M., Vandiver, P., Fukano, N. Nagano, Y. & Aldenderfer, M., Early Ceramic Technology and Variability from Kagoshima, Japan (No. 2): The Incipient Jomon Pottery from the Kenshojo-Ato and Soujiyama Sites. Kagoshima Journal of Archaeology 48: 57-76 (in Japanese).

2018    Iizuka, F., Izuho, M., Gunchinsuren, B., Tsogotbaatar, B. & Odsuren, D.Manufacturing Techniques and Formal Variability of Pottery from Five Neolithic Sites in Eastern Steppe and the Gobi Desert, Mongolia. Studia Archaeologica Instituti Historiae Et Archaeologici Academiae Scientiarum Mongolici XXXVII: 5-16.

2017    Iizuka, F., The Earliest Panamanian Pottery: Reconstructing Production and Distribution of Monagrillo Ceramics through Petrographic Provenance Analysis. Geoarchaeology 32(5):575-595https://doi.org/10.1002/gea.21626.

2017    Iizuka, F. & Izuho, M., Late Upper Paleolithic-Initial Jomon Transitions, Southern Kyushu, Japan: Regional Scale to Macro Processes a Close Look. Quaternary International 441(Part B):102-112. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.quaint.2016.12.040.

2017    Handa, N., Izuho, M., Takahashi, K., Iizuka, F., Tsogtbaatar, B., Gunchinsuren, B., Odsuren, D. & Ishtseren, L., Discovery of a Late Pleistocene Rhinocerotic Fossil from Ondorkhaan, Eastern Mongolia. The Journal of the Geological Society of Japan 123 (12): V-VI.  https://doi.org/10.5575/geosoc.2017.0058 (in Japanese).

2016   Iizuka, F., Izuho, M., Vandiver, P. & Okubo, K., Manufacturing Techniques and Variability: Incipient Jomon Pottery from the Sankakuyama I Site, Kagoshima, Japan. From Jomon no Mori: Bulletin of Kagoshima Prefectural Archaeological Center 9: 31-50 (in Japanese).

Book Chapters

2014  Iizuka, F., Cooke, R., Frame, L. & Vandiver, P., Inferring Provenance, Manufacturing Technique, and Firing Temperatures of Monagrillo Ware (3520-1300 cal BC), Panama's First Pottery. In Craft and Science: International Perspectives on Archaeological Ceramics, edited by Martinón-Torres, M., pp. 19-29. UCL Qatar Series in Archeology and Cultural Heritage, Volume 1, Doha, Qatar: Bloomsbury Qatar Foundation.http://dx.doi.org/10.5339/uclq.2014.cas.ch3.

Book Review

2015    Iizuka, F., Science before Modernity, Archaeology of the Present; Book Review: The Archaeology of Science: Studying the Creation of Useful Knowledge, Michael Brian Schiffer. New York: Springer, 2013, Current Anthropology 56(1): 146-148. doi.org/10.1086/679592.