Team & Collaborations

Principal Investigator

Photo of Ekaterina Nechaeva

Ekaterina Nechaeva

Ekaterina Nechaeva is a Junior Professor at the University of Lille, Hub ‘Changing Cultures, Societies and Practices’ and a researcher at the Histoire, Archéologie et Littérature des Mondes Anciens laboratory (HALMA; UMR 8164).

She specialises in Late Antique history, with the focus on international affairs, relations between Rome and the Sasanian Persia, diplomacy, and across-the-border migration and mobility.

Short bio

Ekaterina Nechaeva obtained her PhD from the University of Siena (Italy, 2007). Her BA and MA in the history of ancient Greece and Rome (2001) are from the University of Saint Petersburg, Russia. Having worked at the Hermitage Museum as a researcher and educator for almost ten years (1999 and 2010), she left Russia in 2010 and continued her research activities in international contexts.
Since then she has been awarded a number of prestigious fellowships, among them the Dumbarton Oaks Byzantine Studies fellowship (Washington DC, 2013-2014) and the EURIAS MSCA-COFUND Pogramme-FP7 Fellowship carried out at Collegium Helveticum (Zurich, 2016-2017). Dr. Nechaeva has held postdoctoral research positions at the École des hautes études en sciences sociales (Paris, 2011-2012) and the University of Tübingen (DFG-Kollegforschergruppe « Migration und Mobilität in Spätantike und Frühmittelalter », 2017-2018). She was a bibliographic consultant at the research library of the American Academy in Rome (2010-2014) and a program coordinator for the Joseph Brodsky Foundation (Rome, 2014-2015). She has also been a research associate at the University of Geneva (2015-2016) and the University of Bern (2016-2017).
In 2019, Dr Nechaeva joined the HALMA laboratory in Lille, first as a postdoctoral researcher within the DANUBIUS project (until September 2020), then as the principal investigator of the EX-PATRIA project and as a Junior Professor.

Detailed CV

Postdoctoral researchers

Daniel Alford

Daniel Alford’s focus within the EX-PATRIA Project will be on the movement of families in Armenia and Northern Mesopotamia. The administrative division of Armenia makes it an excellent case-study for understanding the permeability of imperial borders, as communities were required to operate across these borders in order to impose group cohesion and pursue more personal objectives – such as seeking education, entering alliances for the purpose of child-foesterage or arranging suitable marriages. Sasanian Mesopotamia, on the other hand, was well-placed for trade and agriculture centre, as well as an important centre for the Zoroastrian elite, and Christian and Jewish religious minorities. It was thus a frequent destination for individuals entering the Sasanian Empire. Dr. Alford is interested in examining the way that geography and administrative divisions affected movement and settlement practices. He will also work on sources in Classical Armenian and Middle Persian more generally in order to contribute to the project’s base of knowledge on the western Iranian world.

Short bio

Daniel Aldord gained a BA and DPhil in History, as well as an MPhil in Late Antique and Byzantine Studies at the University of Oxford, before moving to the University of Lille as a Post-doctoral researcher in 2023. His research interests centre on the position of Armenia in the global late antique world, looking particularly at the way in which religious and family practices in the fifth to seventh centuries CE were influenced by the region’s liminal position between the Byzantine and Sasanian Empires and its deep cultural ties with the Iranian milieu. Dr. Alford is especially concerned with the roles of women and children and contributing to the growing body of research on their experiences.

Anna Usacheva

Anna Usacheva will soon start working on her sub-project within the EX-PATRIA project: Called by the Trumpet: Influence of the Ecclesiastic Propaganda on the Migration Behaviour and Social Attitude of the Romans toward their Sassanid Neighbours. She will explore how religious self-identification played into the emigration behaviour of the Antiochian school’s associates and builds a prosopographic network of scholars and ecclesiastic officials associated with the school in Antioch, which will be integrated/connected to the prosopographical knowledge base on Late Antique migrants.

Her field of expertise and research interests focus on the study of the literature, philosophy, social and institutional history of late antiquity.

Short bio

She obtained her doctoral degree in Classical and Byzantine Philology from Lomonosov Moscow State University in 2011. After that she was teaching ancient Greek and Latin Languages and literature and philosophy of Late Antiquity at St Tikhon University (Moscow). She also held a position of a chief editor at the academic publishing house “Dmitry Pozharsky University Press”. In 2015, she secured the Marie Skłodowska-Curie funding (Aarhus University). Her research resulted in a monograph Knowledge, Language and Intellection from Origen to Gregory Nazianzen (2017, Peter Lang). In this study, she explored the theological problems discussed during the second wave of the so-called Arian crisis, from the perspective of classical and late antique epistemological, linguistic, logical and ontological theories. In 2018, she received a Core Fellowship from the Helsinki Collegium for Advanced Studies. Her research project was entitled Physiology of Human Intelligence in De Natura Hominis by Nemesius of Emesa. In 2019, she founded a new academic peer-reviewed Series called Contexts of Ancient and Medieval Anthropology (Brill).  From 2020 until 2023, she has been employed as a senior researcher and the Vice-Leader of the Project Authorial Publication in Late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages (University of Helsinki). In this research project, she combined the methodologies of historical, philological and sociological scholarship to capture and explain the cultures of publishing in Late Antiquity.

Active collaborations

Interdisciplinary collaboration with UMR 9189 CRIStAL on managing uncertainty and inconsistency in historical knowledge bases

Pierre Bourhis

Pierre Bourhis is a member of UMR 9189 CRIStAL and a CNRS researcher. He received his PhD from the Université Paris Sud (2011). He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Department of Computer Science of Oxford University (2011-2013). He is a specialist in databases and knowledge representation in artificial intelligence. He has worked in particular on various applications of logical reasoning: in cybersecurity with a CNRS Momentum project for which he was the project leader and a member of the IPoP cybersecurity PEPR, and in scientific data collection processes and crowd-sourcing in the ANR Headwork project. He is co-supervising a thesis on the theoretical foundations of databases of plays used in digital humanities. Three of his works have won awards: a Distinguishable Paper (Honorary Mention) at IJCAI 2015 for the paper Reasonable Highly Expressive Query Languages, the ICALP 2017 Track B Best Paper Award for the paper Characterizing Definability in Decidable Fixpoint Logics and the Sigmod Hilghlight Research 2020 award for the best papers of 2019 published in database conferences for the paper Constant-Delay Enumeration for Nondeterministic Document Spanners.

Simon Bliudze

Simon Bliudze is a member of UMR 9189 CRIStAL and researcher at the INRIA Lille – Nord Europe centre; he is also a part-time lecturer in the Computer Science Department at the École polytechnique. He obtained a Master’s degree in Mathematics from the University of St. Petersburg (Russia, 1998), a DEA (Master’s research) in Computer Science from the University of Paris 6 (DEA Algorithmics; France, 2001) and a PhD in Computer Science from the École Polytechnique (France, 2006). Before joining INRIA in 2017, he spent two years as a post-doc at Verimag (Grenoble, France) working with Joseph Sifakis on the formal semantics of BIP, then three years as a research engineer at CEA Saclay (France) and six years as a scientific associate at EPFL (Lausanne, Switzerland).

Former interns

El Mehdi Bazzine & Oussama Elmounkad

In their End-of-Studies project at carried out in the Fall semester of 2020 at the E-Services programme of the Science and Technology department of the University of Lille, El Mehdi Bazzine and Oussama Elmounkad have developed the initial version of the future prosopographic database. The project was co-supervised by Simon Bliudze (INRIA Lille – Nord Europe).