Background and activities


Associate professor in archaeology and Head of cultural historical collections at the NTNU University Museum. 


My primary research interest within archaeology is the Iron Age and Early Medieval period in Northern Europe, with a special focus on decorated metalwork, places of trade and production, and the relationship between place names and archaeological monuments in the cultural landscape.

My first research area is decorated metalwork from the Viking period. In my doctoral thesis, I investigated trefoil brooches from Scandinavia with regard to their typology, dating, decoration, function, and production. In a later work, I have examined the cultural contacts between Scandinavia and the Continent in the Viking Age, as they are evident on high status metalwork by processes of adaption and reception.

My second research area is about sites of trade and production, exchange, and access to resources in the first millennium AD in Scandinavia. I have investigated this topic from various angles, studying metal detector finds from a production site affiliated with an Iron Age manor at Missingen, Østfold, investigating the maritime place name *Sæheimr in Scandinavia as a possible indicator of Iron Age landing sites, exploring the maritime-economic network between Viking Age central farms around the Trondheimsfjorden, analyzing the landscape of communication around the Urnes stave church, and discussing long-distance trade in the early Viking Age between Ribe and Northern Norway based on eight-century glass beads.

Besides, I have a third, small field of research, which is about metal detector finds and cultural heritage management. 


  • NIDARK – The revitalization of archaeological objects and documentation from the medieval town Nidaros



  • 2018-2019: NTNU´s mentor programme for female associate professors
  • 2017-2018: NTNU leadership development programme for research group leaders
  • 2017: University pedagogy (Pedup), NTNU
  • 2011-2012: Courses in archive management (50 credits), University of Oslo
  • 2003: PhD in archaeology, Kiel University
  • 2000: Magistra Artium (archaeology, history, European ethnology), Kiel University


  • 2016-present: Associate professor and Head of cultural historical collections, NTNU University Museum, Department of Archaeology and Cultural History, NTNU
  • 2016: Archivist, Nesodden municipality, Norway
  • 2015: Adviser, Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo
  • 2012-2015: Researcher, Museum of Cultural History, University of Oslo
  • 2012: Archivist, Nesodden municipality, Norway
  • 2009-2010: Senior Fellow, Excellence Cluster TOPOI “The Formation and Transformation of Space and Knowledge in Ancient Civilizations”, Freie Universität Berlin
  • 2006-2009: Curator, Archäologisches Landesmuseum, Stiftung Schleswig-Holsteinische Landesmuseen Schloß Gottorf, Germany
  • 2005: Project researcher in the Tissø-Project, The National Museum of Denmark, Copenhagen



  • 2018-present: main supervisor for 1 PhD student (in progress), NTNU
  • 2016-present: main supervisor for 3 master students (2 finished, 1 in progress), NTNU


  • 2016-present: Lectures in archaeology, and in archive and collection management, NTNU
  • 2010: Seminar in archaeology, Excellence Cluster TOPOI, Freie Universität Berlin


  • 2021: Co-organizer of the session «Towards an International Archaeology of Fortifications: Methodologies and Interpretations» (27th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists, Kiel)
  • 2020: Co-organizer of the international workshop «The setting of fortifications in the natural and cultural landscape» (05.-06.03.2020, Schleswig)2020: Co-organizer of the international workshop «Organizing landscapes in Early Medieval Northern Europe»
  • 2018-present: Organizer, Series of lectures linked to the project NIDARK – The revitalization of archaeological objects and documentation from the medieval town Nidaros,Trondheim
  • 2018: Co-organizer, Symposium «Royal Saints, Kings and People. St. Olav in Context», Trondheim
  • 2017: Co-organizer, Symposium «Challenging 997: Church – Town – Saint. St. Clement´s church and the development of Trondheim 900-1150”, Trondheim
  • 2017: Organizer, Workshop “Stedsnavn og kulturminner i et landskapsperspektiv”, Trondheim
  • 2010: Co-organizer, Symposium «Das Fränkische Reich als Vorbild? Zur Dialektik von Akkulturation und skandinavischer Identitätenkonstituierung während der Wikingerzeit“, Paderborn


  • 2018-2021, 2021-present: Member of the Department Council at the Department of Archaeology and Cultural History, NTNU
  • 2016-present: Member of Expert Committees for positions as Doctoral and Post Doctoral Scholarships and Associate Professor, NTNU
  • 2016-present: Coordinator of the loan commitee of the Collections of cultural history at the NTNU University Museum, NTNU
  • 2016-present: Head of Collections of cultural history at the NTNU University Museum, NTNU


  • 2018: Academic responsibility for the special exhibition «Himmelens glans. Middelalderens emaljearbeider fra Limoges», NTNU University Museum
  • 2006-2009: Academic responsibility for the new permanent exhibition at the Wikinger Museum Haithabu, Schleswig
  • 2004: Academic responsibility for one showcase at the special exhibition ”Aktuelle Forschung in Haithabu”, Wikinger Museum Haithabu, Schleswig, and Moesgård Museum, Århus

Scientific, academic and artistic work

Displaying a selection of activities. See all publications in the database

Journal publications


  • Maixner, Birgit. (2010) Haithabu – Fernhandelszentrum zwischen den Welten. Begleitband zur Ausstellung im Wikinger Museum Haithabu. 2010. ISBN 0000000000.
  • Maixner, Birgit. (2005) Die gegossenen kleeblattförmigen Fibeln der Wikingerzeit aus Skandinavien. 2005. ISBN 3-7749-3318-9. Universitätsforschungen zur prähistorischen Archäologie (116).

Part of book/report

  • Maixner, Birgit. (2021) The Landscape of Urnes: Settlement, Communication, and Resources in the Viking and Early Middle Ages. Urnes Stave Church and its Global Romanesque Connections..
  • von Carnap-Bornheim, Claus; Jöns, Hauke; Maixner, Birgit; Müller-Wille, Michael. (2019) Handelsemporien und frühe Städte. Mittelalterlicher Handel im Nord- und Ostseeraum. Spuren des Menschen. 800000 Jahre Geschichte in Europa.
  • Maixner, Birgit. (2016) Metallsøkprosjekt Missingen/Åkeberg– et samarbeidsprosjekt mellom forvaltningen og frivillige rundt en storgård fra jernalderen. Pløyejord som kontekst. Nye utfordringer for forskning, forvaltning og formidling.
  • Maixner, Birgit. (2014) Fränkische Rangzeichen und ihre Rezeption im wikingerzeitlichen Skandinavien. Die Wikinger und das Fränkische Reich. Identitäten zwischen Konfrontation und Annäherung..
  • Maixner, Birgit. (2004) Die tierstilverzierten Metallarbeiten der Wikingerzeit aus Birka unter besonderer Berücksichtigung des Borrestils. Zwischen Tier und Kreuz. Untersuchungen zur wikingerzeitlichen Ornamentik im Ostseeraum..