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Francisca Santana-Sagredo

Assistant lecturer, Universidad Católica de Chile

My main research interest is the study of prehispanic humans and animals from northern and southern Chile, together with northern Peru, from a bioarchaeological standpoint. My work concentrates on the use of stable isotope and radiogenic analysis, as well as radiocarbon dating on archaeobotanical, zooarchaeological and bioanthropological samples. My investigations include the transition to and intensification of agriculture, pastoralism (evaluating what domestic camelids ate and how they moved), and the study of human palaeodiet and mobility. I studied my PhD at the University of Oxford, England, focusing on how people moved and travelled along their lives in the Atacama Desert 1,000 years ago—from the coast to the valleys and/or highlands and vice versa—through stable isotope analysis of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and radiogenic strontium isotopes.
I am also interested on the reconstruction of life stories in the past through bioanthropological analysis of human remains and the evaluation of physical activity patterns, oral health, and palaeopathologies.


  • –present
    Research Associate, Archaeology, Universidad Católica de Chile