Mitch Hendrickson

Assistant Professor


PhD University of Sydney 2007, MA University of Calgary 2001, BA (Hons) University of Calgary 1995


Mainland SE Asia

Topics of Interest:

Angkor and the Khmer Empire, the rise, operation and collapse of Asian states, transportation and communication systems, premodern industrial production (iron, ceramics), archaeology of Buddhism, field techniques, GIS and applications of remote sensing to landscape archaeology.

Personal Statement

I am an historic archaeologist interested in the operation of medieval Southeast Asian states, specifically the rise, development and collapse of the Angkorian Khmer in what is today Cambodia, Thailand and Laos. My PhD work specialised in documenting the extent, function and chronology of the Khmer road system using historic sources, innovative field techniques (ultralight aircraft), remote sensing and Geographic Information Systems. Since 2009, I have directed the Industries of Angkor Project (INDAP) based at the massive regional centre of Preah Khan of Kompong Svay in north-central Cambodia. The primary objective of INDAP is to examine the industrial, settlement and environmental history of Preah Khan and its potential role in supplying iron to the capital of Angkor during major periods of Khmer expansion in the 11th and 13th centuries. In conjunction with Dr. Stéphanie Leroy at the CEA Saclay, we are also examining the role of production and consumption of iron specifically derived from the Phnom Dek ('Iron Mountain') located 30km to the east of Preah Khan. The Iron and Angkor Project (IRANGKOR) is the first comprehensive analysis of iron architectural crampons r in Southeast Asia. This research is currently funded by grants from the National Science Foundation and the Agence Nationale de la Recherche (France).

I also co-direct the Two Buddhist Towers Project, a multidisciplinary collaboration funded by the Robert H. N. Ho Family Foundation Collaborative Research Fellowships in Buddhist Studies/ACLS. You can find the link to our website here. This project seeks to identify the material transition between Mahayana and Theravada Buddhism during the Angkorian period.

Prior to studying the Khmer culture, I worked on spatio-temporal issues of polychrome pottery styles from the Casas Grandes region in Chihuahua, NW Mexico.

Select Publications

Hall, Tegan, Dan Penny, Mitch Hendrickson, Colin Cooke and Quan Hua 2016. "Iron and Fire: geoarchaeological history of a Khmer industrial city during the decline of the Angkor Kingdom". Journal of Archaeological Science Reports 6:53-63.


Hendrickson, Mitch and Damian Evans. 2015. "Reimagining the City of Fire and Iron: A landscape archaeology of the Angkor-Period Industrial Complex of Preah Khan of Kompong Svay, Cambodia (ca. 9th to 13th centuries A.D.)". Journal of Field Archaeology 5:1-21.


Pryce, T. Oliver, Mitch Hendrickson, Kaseka Phon, Sovichetra Chan, Michael F. Charlton, Stéphanie Leroy, Philippe Dillmann, and Quan Hua. "The Iron Kuay of Cambodia: Tracing the role of peripheral populations in Angkorian to Colonial Cambodia via a 1200 year old industrial landscape." Journal of Archaeological Science 47:142–163.

Hendrickson, Mitch, Quan Hua and T. Oliver Pryce. "Using in-slag charcoals as an indicator of ‘terminal’ iron production within the Angkorian (10th-13th centuries AD) center of Preah Khan of Kompong Svay, Cambodia." Radiocarbon 55(1):31-47.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "Connecting the Dots: Investigating the issue of transportation between the temple complexes of the medieval Khmer (9th to 14th centuries AD)." In Old Myths and New Approaches: Advances in the Interpretation of Religious Sites in Ancient Southeast Asia, edited by Alexandra Haendel. Centre of Southeast Asian Studies, Monash Asia Institute, Melbourne, pp. 70-88. 

Pottier, Christophe, Dan Penny, Mitch Hendrickson and Elizabeth Carter. "Unearthing an Atlantean Myth in Angkor: Geoarchaeological investigation of the ‘underwater road’ crossing the Tonle Sap Lake, Cambodia." Journal of Archaeological Science 39:2604-2611.

Lustig, Eileen and Mitch Hendrickson. "Angkor’s Roads: An Archaeo–Lexical Approach." In Connecting Empires: Selected Papers from the 13th International Conference of the European Association of Southeast Asian Archaeologists. Volume 2, edited by Dominik Bonatz, Andreas Reinecke and Mai Lin Tjoa-Bonatz. NUS Press, Singapore, pp.191-208.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "A transport geographic perspective on travel and communication in Angkorian Southeast Asia (9th to 15th centuries AD)." World Archaeology 43(3):444-457.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "Historic Routes to Angkor: Development of the Khmer Road System (9th to 13th centuries CE) in mainland Southeast Asia." Antiquity 84(324):480-496.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "La Voie Royale était-elle dallée? Re-appraising a myth of the Angkorian period road system (9th
 to 15th centuries AD)." Aséanie 26:83-109.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "People around the Houses with Fire: Archaeological investigation of settlement around the Jayavarman VII "resthouse" temples." UDAYA: Journal of Khmer Studies 9:63-79.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "New evidence of brown glaze stoneware kilns along the East road from Angkor."
Bulletin of the Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association 28:52-56.

Kelley, Jane H., Karin T. Burd, and Mitchel J. Hendrickson. "Design Analysis of Chihuahuan Polychrome Jars from North American Museum Collections." British Archaeological Report International Series 1125. Ceramics as Temporal and Spatial Indicators in Chihuahuan Cultures. In Surveying the Archaeology of Northwest Mexico, edited by Gillian E. Newell and Emiliano Gallaga. University of Utah Press, Salt Lake City, pp. 177-204.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "Lost Pots and Untold Tales: A Stylistic Recontextualization of Chihuahuan Polychrome Jars from North American Museum Collections." In From Paquime to Mata Ortiz: The Legacy of Ancient Casas Grandes, edited by G. Johnson. San Diego Museum of Man Papers 40. San Diego Museum of Man Press: San Diego, pp. 37-55.

Hendrickson, Mitch. "Are You My Type? Styles in Classification of Medio Period Polychrome Ollas, Casas Grandes, Chihuahua."
Collected Papers from the 11th Jornada Mogollon Conference 20th Anniversary, edited by P. Beckett. Coas Publishing and Research, Las Cruces, New Mexico, pp. 119-131.

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Contact Information

Email: Office Phone:(312) 413-3584