Within this research area, cultural, ethnic and social identities of prehistoric, protohistoric and historical communities and societies are studied. The reconstruction of social, individual and gender identities will be based on the archaeological remains of material culture observed in an interdisciplinary way in available sources and in the context of cultural and social processes. The identity of the communities will also be studied in the light of characteristic distinctions: regional vs. local, traditional vs. innovative.
One of the challenges lies in the recognition of older legacies in new social formations (such as the hybridity of material culture and cultural identities, social strategies of reaffirming old and creating new identities and relationships, distinguishing between indicators of older legacies and new elements in the processes of settlement, as well as the use of a given space through archaeological periods). Further challenges can be found in the problematic topics pertaining to the recognition of various identities deriving from gender studies, costume, warrior equipment etc. Social status, same as power and authority, is particularly characteristic in the research on the identities of local elites and their relationship with other social classes in the broader geographical context of the time (for instance, the process of the Romanization of elites, chivalric orders, nobility in the mediaeval feudal society). Special attention is focused on the archaeology of childhood from prehistory to the Late Middle Ages and the Early Modern period, in which all the acquired knowledge is complemented with the results of multidisciplinary research. Research will also be directed towards the issue of the dynamics of the process of formation of specific identities, as well as their preservation and significance for contemporary community or society. The influence of individuals or specific groups of people on the formation of the identity of a given community is studied, as well as the opposing facet, to what degree the identity of a community is the result of complex socio-economic processes. Investigations are also directed towards recognizing specific regional identities within already structured supraregional cultural, social or even state formations.