With the exception of Circum-Alpine wetland sites, structural remains of fourth-millennium BC settlements in Central Europe are rarely encountered. As a result, there is a dearth of information concerning settlement organisation and social differentiation. Recent excavations at the waterlogged Parkhaus Opéra site on the shores of Lake Zurich have, however, provided important new evidence for the existence of complex Late Neolithic settlement strategies and social stratification. Excellent organic preservation conditions permit extensive dendrochronological analyses of structures and the precise phasing of building activity. The results reveal a complex and highly dynamic settlement system, and provide a rare insight into the organisation of Late Neolithic Central European society.