Posted by: Johan Normark | November 5, 2010

The ketchup jackpot

The past few weeks have been quite surreal for me. Three weeks ago I was convinced that I would be unemployed by the end of November when the funds for my Postdoctoral project at Stockholm University ends. Two weeks ago this changed for the better since I hit the jackpot in terms of fund raising. It turns out that the jackpot transformed into a ketchup effect.

First the Swedish Central Bank granted me funds for a three years long project called “Water as archaeological material”. I am currently posting the five case studies I will work on within this project.  I will initiate this project in the fall of 2011 rather than in the beginning of the year as originally planned. This is because I found out earlier this week that one of my current financiers, the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (SIDA), will continue to support my current project “The Spanish Colonial border and its affect on climate related settlement strategy in southern Mexico.” As if this was not enough, another of my current financiers, the Swedish Research Council, have granted my former thesis advisor Per Cornell funds for a larger project in which I will participate (although I do not know to what extent yet). Per’s project is called “The early modern town: archaeology between the local and the global.” As it is now I am occupied with full-time research for the next 4-5 years! By the end of November I will change my employer back to Göteborg University again. Thirty minutes walking distance to one’s workplace is a lot better than 3-5 hours on a tram, train, and subway.

I wonder how I will be able to finish up my side project on the 2012 phenomenon (that research has a “best before date” so it cannot be halted for too long). Maybe I should settle for an article or two rather than a book that I once planned? I have already applied for minor funds for that research as well. Is there more ketchup in the (jack)pot?



  1. I have long since learned that in our line of work it’s impossible to predict the future more than 2 weeks in advance. Fantastic news and good luck with the new projects.

  2. Thanks. I was lucky this time. Let’s see if the luck is as good three-four years from now when I have to repeat the process.


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