Daniela De Simone is an archaeologist specialised in the protohistorical and historical archaeology of South Asia and Assistant Professor in South Asian Archaeology in the Department of Languages and Cultures. She is currently the Principal Investigator leading the five-year project The Nilgiri Archaeological Project: Culture and Environment in the Upland Forests of South India from Antiquity to Early Modernity (2021-2026), funded by the Research Foundation–Flanders (FWO) with an Odysseus Type II grant. In additon, she heads the three-year project Excavations at Bodhgaya: The Site of the Buddha’s Enlightenment (2021-2024), funded by the White-Levy Program at Harvard University, and the four-year project Archaeological Explorations and Investigations in the Gangetic Plains and Neighbouring Regions (2021-2025), funded by Ghent University Special Research Fund (BOF) with a Starting Grant. Before joining Ghent University in 2021, Daniela was Curator of South Asia at the British Museum, Assistant Programme Specialist at UNESCO New Delhi, where she worked on the sustainable conservation of Indian old city areas, and Excavation Supervisor at the site of Gotihawa, an early Buddhist site in Nepal, with the Italian Institute for Africa and the Orient (IsIAO). She studied Indian Languages and Cultures at “L’Orientale,” University of Naples, where she earned her PhD in South Asian Studies (Archaeology) in 2012. Her research focuses on the adaptation to, and transformation and exploitation of the natural environment by Indian indigenous communities in the pre-colonial period, and the history of Indian Buddhism through the study of material culture, particularly artefacts and architecture.