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ARCHAIA. Training seminars on research planning, conservation, characterisation and management in archaeological sites

Final Report Summary - ARCHAIA (Training Seminars on Research Planning, Conservation, Characterisation and Management in Archaeological Sites)

The ARCHAIA project has implemented two training seminars on cultural heritage based on an innovative integrated perspective deriving both from the human and the natural sciences. The seminars - one in Copenhagen (28-30 January 2008) and another one in Bologna (15-17 May 2008) - addressed 90 post-graduate students, scholars and professionals of different backgrounds.

We aimed at presenting the results of some European Union (EU)-funded research projects and European Cooperation in Science and Technology (COST) actions within an innovative framework, i.e. a global approach towards planning and management of archaeological parks starting from the very first steps of field research and going through the characterisation of the materials retrieved and topographical studies in order to mould every bit of historical information within a coherent project, properly displayed for the public.

Dealing with the initial program of archaeological research in the field, integrated with techniques of archeobiological and geoarchaeological investigation, our final goal has been to supply the participants with the guidelines for moulding research strategies and managing archaeological sites, in order to be able to publicly display the historical content derived from research results and effectively proceed to the protection of the cultural heritage.

Five key topics had been selected:
- topic 1: topography, surveying and landscape archaeology;
- topic 2: archaeological research and restoration of monuments;
- topic 3: material culture characterisation;
- topic 4: anthropology and environment; and
- topic 5: data processing and public presentation.
Topics 1 and 2 were dealt with in Bologna, topics 3 and 4 in Copenhagen, while topic 5 was common to both.

The dissemination of the lectures presented, through a monograph and the website, also supplies guidelines for integrated protocols on the management of archaeological sites, set in their landscape, within a global perspective.

The ARCHAIA project have brought in several foremost specialists from many different fields and had them working in a global, coordinated perspective. The intense networking necessary resulted in highly stimulating, state-of-the-art papers on all the aspects involved in planning and managing conservation and presentation activities on archaeological sites.

Speakers have supplied in due time their papers in written form for the publication in the proceedings volume, which is printed within the British Archaeological Reports - International Series (published by Archaeopress, Oxford, please see online). Copyright remains with the individual authors.

The project website, represents a vehicle of a different kind for disseminating the achievements of the project.

Both dissemination means aim at showing the complexity of the issues involved in cultural heritage management, touching as diverse fields as natural and historical sciences, philosophy of knowledge and economic planning, questions of ownership and open access.