Méthodes pour l'appréhension raisonnée d'une série de dates radiocarbone : de l'histogramme cumulatif à la modélisation bayésienne

Abstract : At the colloquium of Ambérieu-en-Bugey, twenty years ago, several presentations dealt with methodological aspects, examining in particular the questions of calibration and the analysis of dating series. During the preceding years, discussions presenting sometimes very different points of view occurred on the latter topic, and it thus seemed useful to proceed with this methodological clarification. One of the conclusions of this work was the recommendation to use weighted cumulative histograms in the analysis of a series of dates. Shortly afterwards, a small computer program - unfortunately little disseminated - made it possible to easily produce such histograms, which were then employed successfully and with interesting results, particularly for the Neolithic in southern France. At the same time, other computerised tools were developed for a similar purpose in Germany. During this same period another approach - that of Bayesian modelling - was first used in the UK. Widely used in other scientific fields, the principle interest of Bayesian statistics is the introduction of a priori information in terms of the relevance of the results obtained, thereby allowing the generation of interpretative models respecting certain constraints, for example those of a stratigraphic sequence. Although integrated by default into some calibration programs since the 1990s, the use of these Bayesian analysis tools is only just beginning to spread to France. While the results that these models could contribute are very interesting and provide very rich possibilities, it is essential to take certain precautions in order to avoid creating meaningless or over-interpreted models. On the basis of some real examples from Neolithic sites in southern France, this article presents these various techniques and methods of analysis in order to examine their respective strengths and limitations.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, October 7, 2014 - 9:18:35 PM
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  • HAL Id : hal-01072251, version 1



Thomas Perrin. Méthodes pour l'appréhension raisonnée d'une série de dates radiocarbone : de l'histogramme cumulatif à la modélisation bayésienne. Chronologie de la Préhistoire récente dans le Sud de la France. Acquis 1992-2012. Actualité de la recherche. Actes des 10e Rencontres Méridionales de Préhistoire Récente, Oct 2012, Porticcio, France. pp.11-22. ⟨hal-01072251⟩



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