Crow Canyon Archaelogical CenterWashington State University


Mark Varien, Ph.D.
Crow Canyon Archaeological Center
Principal Investigator

Mark D. Varien (Ph.D., Arizona State University, 1997) is a principal investigator of the Village Ecodynamics Project.

He began conducting research in the central Mesa Verde region of southwestern Colorado in 1979. Since 1987, he has worked at the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center to further the Center’s mission of conducting archaeological research, delivering public education programs about the human past, and partnering with American Indians on the design and delivery of those research and education programs. His research examines how population movement structures settlement patterns, and his recent collaborative work seeks to integrate archaeological and indigenous knowledge.

He currently serves as the executive vice president of the Crow Canyon Research Institute.

Mark's research has been published in scientific journals and in books; he is the author of Sedentism and Mobility in a Social Landscape: Mesa Verde and Beyond (University of Arizona Press, 1999). Along with Tim Kohler and Aaron Wright, he edited Leaving Mesa Verde: Peril and Change in the Thirteenth-Century Southwest (University of Arizona Press, 2010).

The Village Ecodynamics Project Major Partners

Our Mission
The mission of the Crow Canyon Archaeological Center is to advance and share knowledge of the human experience through archaeological research, education programs,and partnerships with American Indians.

Crow Canyon is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

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National Science Foundation Mesa Verde National Park Bandelier National Monument National Park Service Denver Museum of Nature & Science National Geographic U.S. Forest Service Santa Fe Institute Bureau of Land Management - BLM School for Advanced Research Wayne State University Colorado Office of Archaeology and Historic Preservation Canyon of the Ancients National Monument University of Windsor University of Norte Dame New Mexico Historic Preservation Division