Li Xinwei is Professor of the Institute of Archaeology, Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. He received his Ph.D in Archaeology from the School of Historical and European Studies, La Trobe University, Australia. His research focuses on the development of social complexity and early state formation in prehistoric China, and the origin of Chinese civilization. He directed some important field projects in China such as the excavations at the Neolithic Xipo site in western Henan Province. He is currently the director of a field project at the Maya site Copan in Honduras, which is the first project of China in Mesoamerica. The comparison of Mayan and Chinese civilizations is his new research interest. His major publications include Development of Social Complexity in the Liaoxi Area, Northeast China, Rise and fall of Sacred Ritual Center, Xipo Cemetery in Lingbao, Long-distance exchange network of the elite in prehistoric China, ‘Primitive China’ in Archaeology, Reconstruction of the prehistoric foundation of China, Mexico year sign and cross bundles motif in the 8N-11elite compound in Copan, Honduras. He was previously a Visiting Scholar at the Harvard-Yenching Institute from 2007-08.