Univ.-Prof. Mag. Dr. Michael Doneus (Head of department)


  • Email: michael.doneus@univie.ac.at
  • Telephone: +43-1-4277-40486
  • ORCID: 0000-0001-5091-0094
  • Office hours: by appointment

Teaching at the University of Vienna

Supervised MA and PhD theses



Michael Doneus is a professor of landscape archaeology with a focus on archaeological prospection. He sees this as an opportunity to consistently rethink our archaeological practice. This requires moving away from the concept of the site as a punctual unit. Instead, the wealth of information that exists in the environment and in the space between sites should be made accessible and interpreted through large-scale prospection techniques. Doneus is a specialist in archaeological remote sensing, particularly aerial archaeology and airborne laser scanning (LiDAR).
His research comprises a mixture of basic and applied research, focusing on (1) methodological developments in archaeological prospection (especially remote sensing) and landscape archaeology, and (2) the integrated diachronic interpretation of archaeological landscapes and their meanings. This involves contextualising a wide range of high-resolution non- or minimally-invasive prospection methods (especially remote sensing and geophysical methods) in combination with a variety of other historical, archaeological and large-scale palaeoecological information. Most of his research results have been produced within the framework of externally funded projects.


Key Research Topics

  • Landscape Archaeology in Austria and the Mediterranean Region
  • Stratigraphic interpretation of landscapes
  • Methodological developments in airborne laser scanning (ALS)
  • Aerial archaeological interpretation

For more information see: luftbildarchiv.univie.ac.at


Published research of the last 5 years

1.    remote sensing and geoarchaeology for the investigation of quarries in the hinterland of Carnuntum

  • Draganits, Erich; Moshammer, Beatrix; Kremer, Gabrielle; Doneus, Michael (2023): Geoarchaeological remote sensing prospection of Miocene limestone quarries in the hinterland of Roman Carnuntum and Vindobona (Vienna Basin, Austria). In: AJES - Austrian Journal of Earth Sciences 116 (1), S. 39–83. doi.org/10.17738/ajes.2023.0003.

2. stratigraphic interpretation of archaeological landscapes

  • Doneus et al. 2022M. Doneus, W. Neubauer, R. Filzwieser, C. Sevara, Stratigraphy from Topography II. The Practical Application of the Harris Matrix for the GIS-based Spatio-temporal Archaeological Interpretation of Topographical Data, Archaeologia Austriaca 2022. doi: 10.1553/archaeologia106s223.
  • M. Doneus, N. Doneus, D. Cowley, Confronting Complexity: Interpretation of a Dry Stone Walled Landscape on the Island of Cres, Croatia, Land 2022, 11, 1672, 1-43. doi.org/10.3390/land11101672

3. methodological developments for archaeological terrain modelling from laser scans

  • Doneus, M., Höfle, B., Kempf, D., Daskalakis, G., Shinoto, M., 2022. Human‐in‐the‐loop development of spatially adaptive ground point filtering pipelines—An archaeological case study. Archaeological Prospection. doi.org/10.1002/arp.1873
  • Doneus, M., Mandlburger, G. and Doneus, N., 2020. Archaeological Ground Point Filtering of Airborne Laser Scan Derived Point-Clouds in a Difficult Mediterranean Environment. Journal of Computer Applications in Archaeology, 3(1), pp.92–108. DOI: doi.org/10.5334/jcaa.44
  • Doneus, Michael; Banaszek, Łukasz; Verhoeven, Geert J. (2022): The Impact of Vegetation on the Visibility of Archaeological Features in Airborne Laser Scanning Datasets from Different Acquisition Dates. In: Remote Sensing 14 (4), S. 858. doi.org/10.3390/rs14040858.
  • Doneus, Michael; Shinoto, Maria; Herzog, Irmela; Nakamura, Nakao; Haijima, Hideyuki; Ōnishi, Tomokazu et al. (2019): UAV-based Airborne Laser Scanning in densely vegetated areas: Detecting Sue pottery kilns in Nakadake Sanroku, Japan. In: JAMES BONSALL (Hg.): NEW GLOBAL PERSPECTIVES ON ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROSPECTION. 13th international conference on archaeological prospection, 28 august - 1 septembe. [S.l.]: Archaeopress, S. 220–223.

4. interpretation of archaeological landscapes

  • Doneus, Nives; Miholjek, Igor; Džin, Kristina; Doneus, Michael; Dugonjić, Pavle; Schiel, Hannes (2020): Archaeological Prospection of Coastal and Submerged Settlement Sites. Re-Evaluation of the Roman Site Complex of Vižula, Croatia. In: Archaeologia Austriaca Band 104/2020, S. 235–281. doi.org/10.1553/archaeologia104s235.
  • Sevara, C., Salisbury, R. B., Totschnig, R., Doneus, M. & Tusa, S., (2020). New discoveries at Mokarta, a Bronze Age hilltop settlement in western Sicily, Antiquity. 94/375, 2020 S. 686-704.  doi.org/10.15184/aqy.2019.171
  • Sevara, C., Salisbury, R. B., Doneus, M., Draganits, E., Totschnig, R., Frazetta, C. A. & Tusa, S. (2020). Landscape in Transitions: Guletta, a Multiperiod Settlement along the Mazaro River in Western Sicily, Journal of Field Archaeology 45/5, 2020, S. 334-354. doi.org/10.1080/00934690.2020.1734898
  • Doneus, Nives; Neubauer, Wolfgang; Doneus, Michael; Wallner, Mario (2018). Die archäologische Landschaft von Halbturn. Ergebnisse aus drei Jahrzehnten integrierter archäologischer Prospektion, Archaeologia Austriaca, Band 102/2018, 201-226. doi.org/10.1553/archaeologia102s201
  • Doneus, Nives; Gugl, Christian; Doneus, Michael; Klammer, Julia (2018): Die römische Villa von Zillingtal-Kleinberg und ihre Nachbarn in Prospektion und Landschaft. In: Falko Daim, Nives Doneus und Michael Doneus (Hg.): Ein römisches Landgut im heutigen Zillingtal (Burgenland) und sein Umfeld. Mainz: Verlag des Römisch-Germanischen Zentralmuseums (Monographien des Römisch-Germanischen Zentralmuseums, Band 134), S. 99–182. www.academia.edu/77849303/Die_r%C3%B6mische_Villa_von_Zillingtal_Kleinberg_und_ihre_Nachbarn_in_Prospektion_und_Landschaft

5. cultural heritage, documentation and tourism

6. aerial archaeology / image based modelling


Grants (last 10 years)

2021-2022: Human-in-the-Loop Adaptive Terrain Filtering of 3D Point Clouds for Archaeological Prospection (Cooperation with University Heidelberg, as pre-study for a stand-alone-project). Results: https://afwizard.readthedocs.io/en/latest/

2020-2023: INTERREG: Danube´s Archaeological eLandscapes (Virtual archaeological landscapes of the Danube region). PI of ProjectPartner UNIVIE. https://www.interreg-danube.eu/approved-projects/danube-s-archaeological-elandscapes

2017-2019: INTERREFG: Iron-Age-Danube. PI of ProjectPartner UNIVIE. www.iron-age-danube.eu

2016-2019: PI of FWF P28410: Prospecting Boundaries: Archaeology along the Mazaro, Sicily.

2014-2016: Cooperation partner in: FWF-P26368 Stone monuments and Stone Quarrying in the Carnuntum - Vindobona Are. Principal Investigator: Gabrielle Kremer, ÖAI

2013-2015: Cooperation partner “Geoarchaeological investigation of pre-Columbian archaeological sites from Northwestern Argentina”. FP7-people: Förderung der Mobilität im Rahmen des Wissenschaftlich-Technischen Abkommens mit Argentinien. Kooperationspartner: Universidad Nacional de Tucumán, Laboratorio de Geoarqueología, Facultad de Ciencias Naturales e Instituto Miguel Lillo, Argentinien.

2013-2015: Cooperation partner: “Modelli spaziali di accessibilità tra siti nuragici nei paesaggi storici per l'analisi territorial” (Spatial models of the accessibility between Nuragic sites in historical landscapes for the territorial analysis). Project leader: Stefan Tischler, Università di Sassari, Dipartimento di Architettura, Design e Urbanistica DADU.

2013-2015: Cooperation partner in: Functions of an Egyptian town - Case study of Tell el-Dabá; FWF P25804. Principal Investigator: Irene Forstner-Müller, ÖAI.

2012-2014: PI of FWF: P24116-N23: Automated georeferencing and orthorectification of archaeological aerial photographs arap.univie.ac.at/results/hardware/index.htm




Curriculum Vitae

2019: Professeur invité du labex TransferS (École normale supérieure et Collège de France)

Since 2014: Director of the Department for Prehistoric and Early Historic Archaeology, University of Vienna

2012-2013: Director of the Vienna Institute for Archaeological Science (VIAS)

Since 2011: Professor for landscape and environmental archaeology at the Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology, University of Vienna

2010-2017: Deputy-Director and Key-Researcher at the Ludwig Boltzmann Institute for Archaeological  Prospection and virtual Archaeology (archpro.lbg.ac.at)

2009-2011: Senior Scientist at the Department for Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology, University of Vienna.

2009: Habilitation at the Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology, University of Vienna.

1993-2009: Director of the aerial archive at the Department of Prehistoric and Historical Archaeology, University of Vienna.



1999: Ph.D., Department for Prehistoric and Medieval Archaeology, University of Vienna. Dissertation: “Die Keramik der mittelneolithischen Kreisgrabenanlage von Kamegg, NÖ”.

1986-1992: studied Prehistory and Early Medieval History as well as Classical Archaeology at the University of Vienna. Selected lectures at the Institutes of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing and Geodesy at the Vienna University of Technology


Content: M. Doneus, November 2023