6 Jul 2015

Lapita archaeologists meet in Vanuatu

8:05 pm on 6 July 2015

Organisers hope a conference on the Pacific's ancient Lapita people will help experts get up to date and fuel further research.

050514. Photo supplied. Pacific flags. Vanuatu

050514. Photo supplied. Pacific flags. Vanuatu Photo: supplied

112 archaeologists and researchers from around the world are meeting in Vanuatu to discuss the latest discoveries about the Lapita people - the first to colonise parts of Vanuatu, New Caledonia, Fiji, Tonga, and Samoa.

The conference takes place near the largest Lapita community discovered to date - the Teouma Lapita Cemetery site on Efate.

The Australian National University's Stuart Bedford says the conference is a chance for researchers to share discoveries.

"It's really catching up with the latest. I mean often you complete your research and it takes some time to get around to publishing it. So conferences give people time to catch up with the very latest and also get opinions on your research and sometimes you change your final argument."

Stuart Bedford says previous conferences have covered as much as 50-thousand years of Lapita history, but this year the focus is on the basics of Lapita and what came immediately before and after them.