tisdag 16 december 2014

ARKDIS at GL16, Washington D.C. 8-9th December 2014

ARKDIS represented at Sixteenth International Conference on Grey Literature: Grey Literature Lobby - Engines and Requesters for Change at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C.

The GL16 conference covered the topics 'Public Awareness of Grey Literature', 'Publishing and Licensing Grey Literature', Open Access to Research Data' and 'Managing Change in Grey Literature'. The ARKDIS doctoral student Lisa Börjesson contributed by presenting her dissertation research concerning the understanding of professional reports in archaeology. Perhaps the most relevant conference contribution supporting the ARKDIS research in this area came from the research program Environmental Information: Use and Influence at Dalhousie University (CAN). In a conference paper researchers Bertrum H. MacDonald, James D. Ross, Suzette S. Soomi, and Peter G. Wells state "Advocates of grey literature may believe this genre is undervalued or misunderstood, but lobbying for grey literature in the absence of understanding the contexts in which it is or can be used will likely fail unless information activity in those setting is understood."  (GL16 program book, ISSN 1385-2308, p. 32). The ARKDIS research regarding the settings where archaeology grey literature take shape will arguably contribute to a better understanding of the possibilities and limitations of grey literature in Swedish archaeology. 

onsdag 10 december 2014

Report from the Workshop: Digital Communication, Cultural Heritage and Postcolonialism, held 20-21/11-2014

This workshop was held on 20-21 November at the Museum of World Culture in Gothenburg and at the Department of Historical Studies at the University of Gothenburg; including an open, public session on November 21 (see the previous entry, below).

Thanks to all participants who made this a very interesting workshop; which addressed a number of overlapping and interconnected themes and questions. The international examples and the presentations that took up communication and mediation of culturla heritage aimed at different target groups (including in school environment) gave wider perspectives on issues surrounding the goals and means of digital mediation & communication of cultural heritage. Unexpected fields of commun interest seemed to emerge during the discussions of the workshop.

Hopefully the workshop will generate "spin-off" in the form of new collaborations & partnerships - which also can reach outside the academic world.

Thank You! (Per - the workshop organizer)

fredag 5 december 2014

Digital humanities in Sweden

An article by Thomas Nygren, Anna Foka and Philip Buckland on the current state of digital humanities in Sweden was recently published in German H-Soz-Kult journal. The text is interesting (not only because ARKDIS project is mentioned) and informative on how digitisation of information  and research infrastructures has influenced humanities research in the country. It is easy to agree with the conclusions of the authors  that digitisation is not an end by itself and that
"[f]or the future, it is vital to make use of the manifold possibilities offered by digital material and tools. To utilize their potential positively we must develop more cross-disciplinary collaborations; avoid dichotomies when quantitative and qualitative methods and analyses are separated; become better at illustrating and communicating uncertainties; and last, but not least, formulate solid and important research questions."
 This is quite precisely to which ARKDIS project aims to contribute in the context of archaeology. So far, it has become apparent that the dichotomies are not only related to qualitative versus quantitative methods, but to many different aspects from the aims of the technology use to institutional and everyday work related priorities and marginalising tendencies.

söndag 16 november 2014

Workshop: Digital Communication, Cultural Heritage and Postcolonialism

ARKDIS project organises a workshop "Digital Communication, Cultural Heritage and Postcolonialism" in Gothenburg on November 20-21, 2014 with an open session on November 21 at the Department of Historical Studies, University of Gothenburg.
  • 12.30 Welcome!
  • 12.40 Magnus Johansson, Museum of World Culture: Using Kringla & K-samsök to access collections – present possibilities and potentials for further development.
  • 13.10 Valentina Vassallo, The Cyprus Institute/LU: So far, so close. A virtual bridge between Sweden and Cyprus.
  • 13.40 Nicolò Dell'Unto, LU/ArkDIS: Digital methods of documenting and representing/visualizing archaeological investigations.
  • 14.10 Coffee Break
  • 14.40 Isto Huvila, UU, Åbo Akademi/ArkDIS: What is colonizing the continuum of archaeological information in the digital society?
  • 15.10 Lisa Börjesson, UU/ArkDIS: Do policies for archaeological documentation serve cross-national information sharing (and digital repatriation)? -Reflections from an information policy point of view
  • 15.40 General Discussion
  • 16.00 End 

måndag 10 november 2014

Upcoming presentation: Lost context - Limited Genre Understanding Hindering Access to Professional Archaeology Documentation

Seminar presentation by Lisa Börjesson at Information Access Seminar107 South Hall, UC Berkeley School of Information Friday November 14 2014, 4-5 p.m.

AbstractKnowledge production in archaeology is heavily dependent on field 
work documentation, and on efficient dissemination and retrieval of that documentation. As most archaeological surveys and excavations are performed outside university research as contract archaeology, a majority of the documentation is produced and managed in professional settings. The genres of professional documentation, also known as ‘grey literature’, have an ambiguous status in archaeology. On the one hand they represent most of the archaeological undertakings; on the other hand they are accused of being inaccessible and of having low quality content. Academic archaeologists neglecting the grey literature are in turn blamed for being disrespectful of professional archaeologists’ work. The discussion of the ‘grey literature problem’ in archaeology is multifold, but often returns to a tension between academia and the professional sphere. In my dissertation research I argue the focus on the tension between academia and professional archaeology limits understandings and usages of professional archaeology documentation. I propose a perspective on professional archaeology documentation as shaped by a larger context, including policy, public administrative and market logics as well as those of academia and professional work. The seminar presentation will give a line of historical examples supporting the study of archaeology documentation as shaped by a larger context, explain my dissertation research design, and briefly touch upon findings this far.

söndag 2 november 2014

Talking about context-making

Isto is participating in the 2014 Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T) Annual Meeting in Seattle, WA. He gave a talk on context making in archaeological work as a part of the SIG-USE (for a special interest group for information seeking and use) research symposium on Saturday.

The talk was focussed on this years theme on studying contexts as a part of information research and explored the issue of how different actors essentially make the contexts of their work as a part of doing what they do. A researcher who makes observations on a subject of research frames what is the main thing and what is something that makes the context of that thing. For instance, when a field archaeologist focuses on a particular archaeological site, all other things including other sites, other findings and the documented features, finds and samples become contextual (sort of meta-information) for the site. In contrast, a finds specialist can have a tendency to focus on a find and see the site and everything else around the object as contextual. This context-making has an impact how things are documented, what kinds of techniques and technologies are chosen and used and in the end, what we know about the past. At the same time, the largely implicit work of context-making can become a hinder for reuse of data as the contextual ideas of the original documenters and secondary users differ from each other.

Abstract and slides for the presentation can be found at http://istohuvila.se/node/419

fredag 24 oktober 2014

Research article seminar "Information Policy for Sustainable Digitization in Archaeology? – A Critical Analysis"

Wednesday November 26th, 14:15-16.00, room 3/0015, Department of ALM, Uppsala university.

The article is an ongoing collaboration between M.A. Lisa Börjesson (Uppsala University), associate professor Isto Huvila (Åbo akademi/Uppsala University) and associate professor Bodil Petersson (Linneaus University) within ARKDIS (Archaeological Information in the Digital Society).

Article abstract
The introduction of digital data capturing and management technologies have changed information practices in archaeology. Digital information is more integrated than ever in each archaeologists’ daily work. Initiatives and institutions on international, national and regional levels like Archaeology Data Service (ADS) in the UK, the Swedish National Data Service (SND) and the Swedish National Heritage Board’s Digital Archaeological Processes (DAP) project aim at assisting individual archaeologists’ and research institutions’ digital archiving and digital curation. But what is the state of information policy in archaeology today? Do Swedish archaeology has an up-to-date, consistent and anticipatory policy guiding decision-making concerning archaeological information? As knowledge production in archaeology heavily depends on documentation and information dissemination, and on retrieval of past documentation the question of an appropriate information policy is profoundly intertwined with the possibilities for archaeology knowledge production. Furthermore, as archaeology is either partly publicly funded (as is generally the case with academic research archaeology in Europe) or regulated by publicly funded bodies (as is the case with all surveys to some degree), the funding societies have a great economic interest in coordinated and efficient information practices in archaeology. In this article we analyse information policy and discuss how policy plays out in three different contexts in Swedish archaeology: the contract archaeology sector, the museum sector and the archive sector. Throughout the analysis we make international comparisons as we strive to highlight the international relevance of the discussion of information policy development for sustainable digitization in archaeology. The aim of this article is to raise the question of how information policy for archaeology can develop to support consistency and sustainability in the information practices currently developing.

If you wish to read the text prior to the seminar, please contact LisaSee you there!

måndag 11 augusti 2014

Archaeological information in the social media

Isto's article Engagement has its consequences: the emergence of the representations of archaeology in social media about the representation and communication of archaeology in the social media was recently published in the journal Archäologishe Informationen. Even if social media is often seen mainly as an instrument for outreach from the archaeologists to the public, it is a two- way channel of communication and a context for participation and negotiation that consists of an information infrastructure, content and participants. The article discusses the consequences and implications of the bidirectionality of social media. The discussion is based on an empirical study of the representations and reappropriations of archaeology in four different social media services (Facebook, Twitter, Second Life, Pinterest). The analysis shows how the popular and scholarly archaeological information is appropriated in the social media services and how the efforts to engage people lead to a double bind of engagement. People engage archaeologists but also other members of the public to participate in an exchange of knowledge and negotiation of the nature and relevance of archaeology. The findings of the study shed light on the emerging patterns of how the use of social media can affect not only the popular ideas of archaeology and the contexts of its relevance, but also archaeological knowledge (i.e. what is known and what is desirable to be known), its documentary representations and the essence of the archaeological work itself.

The full text of the article is freely available at http://dx.doi.org/10.11588/ai.2013.0.15382

tisdag 22 juli 2014

ARKDIS at “Digital Heritage 2014 – Communities in Action”

Digital Heritage is an annual conference organized by the Center for Digital Heritage. This year’s theme “Communities in Action” explored the concept of community in digital heritage research and practices. Catherine Clarke, professor in English at the University of Southampton delivered a keynote on the different points of departure different communities have when engaging in a heritage experience. Based on her work  developing digital heritage applications for British communities with differing spatial relations to their material heritage, professor Clarke argues heritage is as much about difference and discontinuity, as it is about continuity.

The conference contributions covered a wide range of approaches to digital applications in heritage management and dissemination; besides a number of talks on on various visual interpretations of the past an entire section of the conference was dedicated to auralizations – interpretations of the sound of the past. 

ARKDIS was represented by Ph.D. student Lisa Börjesson and her colleague
Olle Sköld, also from the department of ALM at Uppsala University. Börjesson and Sköld presented a short paper on ontologies of digital games as heritage.

torsdag 12 juni 2014

Arkdis workshop on Digital Agendas at Linnaeus University

During the 3 and 4 of June 2014 the Arkdis research group met in Växjö, Sweden, to discuss how digital agendas at different levels affect the digitization process of archaeology. Invited presenters during the workshop were Annelie Ekelin, Linnaeus University, Annelie Krell, Region Skåne, Karl Magnus Lenntorp, Region Skåne, Maria Casagrande, Skånes Hembygdsförbund, and Björn Magnusson Staaf, Lund University. The presentations held were on topics such as digital agendas on a European, national and regional/local level, on how digital approaches are supported by regional authorities and on how the support is realized in different projects and presentations. One thing that was elucidated during the workshop was that agendas affect the outcomes in both predicted and unpredicted ways. As a result of this workshop our research group is now preparing for a written debate on the topic of digital agendas and archaeology/cultural heritage.

måndag 12 maj 2014

Archiving archaeology: Preliminary observations from a stakeholder study

The question of archiving, preserving and providing access to the outcomes of archaeological investigations has received more and more interest during the past decade. Considerable investments have been made in creating technologies, infrastructures and standards for digitalisation, preservation and dissemination of archaeological heritage. In contrast to the technical and infrastructural work, there is very little in-depth empirical research on the consequences, opportunities and implications of digitalisation to archaeological work, the emergence of archaeological knowledge and how it is used by diverse stakeholder groups of archaeological archives.

To gather empirical evidence, I conducted a study of the Swedish stakeholders of archaeological archiving has been conducted under the auspices of the ARKDIS project. A preliminary analysis of the interview records (N=16) of professionals working with archaeological archiving show that there are multiple technical, legislative, conceptual and structural problems that complicate the building, management and use of archaeological archives. The interviewees were chosen on the basis of a combination of selective sampling and snowballing (letting informants to indicate new possible informants).

Perhaps the most pressing problem discussed by all interviewees was the complexity of how  archaeological archiving is organised in Sweden. Archaeological heritage management and fieldwork involves a large number of actors and especially when it come to the management of digital information and primary research data, the responsibilities between different actors including the National Heritage Board, county administrative boards, archaeology contractors and the national and regional museums are not clearly defined. In practice, many actors keep large archives of data and documents and are waiting for someone to tell them what to do with them. A simpler process with clearer responsibilities would undoubtedly make a significant contribution to improving the general situation.

The complexity of the process has another consequence. At the moment, many actors are forced to work in relative silos. It is difficult to know what other stakeholders are doing with the produced documentation and what would be their actual information needs. From this perspective, it would be important to take carefully into account the needs of contractors, different types of researchers, research data curators, regional and national heritage administrators, archivists, finds managers and other stakeholders in the society when revising and developing the archiving and information process in Swedish archaeology. It seems that a shared and more tangible idea of the products and outcomes of archaeological operations and information  together with a clearer idea of customerships (i.e. who needs the information we are producing and how we can provide more meaningful information for other stakeholders) and supply-chain management (the process of producing, managing and using archaeological information in the society) could form a basis for a more robust and meaningful information production, management and archiving process.

In developing this understanding, it seems also relevant to put a special emphasis on how the different institutions and actors are working in practice with the production and management of archaeological information. A certain abstract consensus of the importance of documenting and preserving archaeological information and its significance aspects was shared by all informants, but when the discussion shifted to the everyday practicalities of working with archiving archaeology, the abstract consensus tended to turn to a broad range of not always entirely compatible practices. A finds administrator put specific emphasis on the management of finds, contractor to the practicalities of field work and an archivists on the details of the administrative process in ways that do not necessarily end up in a consistent corpus of records.

These highly preliminary first observations of the interview data will be complemented in the near future and reported in formal and more detailed publications in the near future. Slides and an abstract of a presentation held at the CAA 2014 conference can be found on the web.

fredag 25 april 2014

What is going on in digital archaeology?

Isto and Daniel are at the moment at the annual Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods conference (CAA 2014) in Paris. The conference gathered this time around 400 archaeologists and archaeology interested researchers and practitioners from other disciplines to discuss on-going practical work and some glimpses of the state-of-the-art of digital, computational and informational aspects of archaeology. In addition to the long-time favourite topics of the conference, GIS and 3D, this year there was a rather notable presence of the papers relating to the historical and theoretical issues of archaeological computing (commemorating the work of late Jean-Claude Gardin) and another track on agent-based modelling. Open and linked data were also present both in the titles and the contents of many papers.

Isto presented a stakeholder analysis of archaeological archiving in Sweden titled Process and appropriation in the digitalisation of archaeological archives and archiving practices. The abstract of the presentation is below:

In contrast to the considerable investments in creating technologies, infrastructures and standards for digitalisation, preservation and dissemination of archaeological heritage, there is still only little indepth research on the consequences, opportunities and implications of digitalisation to archaeological work, the emergence of archaeological knowledge and how it is used by diverse stakeholder groups from ordinary citizens to researchers, museum professionals, landowners and property developers. Apart from the excavating or prospecting archaeologist with a personal experience of a particular site, the principal source of information for other stakeholders is the 'archaeological archive'. There are on-going national and international (e.g. ARCHES-project and the archives workgroup of European Archaeologiae Consilium) initiatives to standardise archiving practices in archaeology and a relative long albeit somewhat slender line of theoretical and practice oriented research on the topic (e.g., Merriman and Swain, 1999; Swain, 2006; Brown, 2011; Lucas, 2010). What is lacking, but would support the practical work and to contextualise earlier theoretical openings, is a broader empirical understanding of the everyday premises of how archaeological archives are managed in practice and how archiving is and is not related to the development of archaeological information systems, databases and archaeological information management practices.

The presentation reports of a Swedish interview study that explicates and maps the work practices and perspectives of the primary stakeholders of archaeological archives. The analysis of the interview records show that there are multiple technical, legislative, conceptual and structural problems that complicate the building, management and use of archaeological archives. Privatisation of archaeological fieldwork, the diversity of involved actors, and often diverging practical and statutory requiments and responsibilities of preserving different types of materials. Further, the digitisation and growth of the amount documentation material has brought demands for effective means of capturing and preserving new forms of data, but also a need to reconsider the concepts of “archaeological archive” and ”archaeological data”, and their functions in archaeology and the society as a whole. The analysis shows that the different actors appropriate (as e.g., in Ramiller and Chiasson, 2008; Twidale et al., 2008) rather than share or even translate the ideas of archaeological information process, archaeological data and archives from a widely different premises to fit their urgent priorities. The findings have several both theoretical and practical implication to the mapping of the digitalising archaeological information processes from the perspectives of different stakeholder groups, standardisation and documentation of current practices and clearer definition of responsibilities, explicit allocation of budgets for archival tasks and the explicit acknowledgement of the diversity of how archaeological information is produced, archived and used.

ARKDIS in Birmingham

The last visit of the ARKDIS tour in the UK was hosted at Digital Humanities Hub at the University of Birmingham by Vince Gaffney and Henry Chapman. We spent the day by learning of each others' work at a mini-conference where both ARKDIS and Birmingham researchers presented their recent and on-going work. We had several common interests from the methodological issues of GIS and landscape archaeology to 3D modelling and management of archaeological data. The presentations also showed clearly that the state-of-the-art of digital methods in archaeology is about combining solid theory and solid research questions.

torsdag 3 april 2014


ARKDIS in York

The ARKDIS tour has continued from Manchester to York. In Manchester, at the Institute for Cultural Practices, University of Manchester we were hosted by Dr. Kostas Arvanitis together with his colleagues. We had an opportunity to hear about each others research at a morning seminar. Kostas Arvanitis told about his highly interesting and theoretically ambitious work on museums and everyday life in the context of several different projects. Professor Stuart Campbell gave an overview of virtual worlds of archaeology (an excellent concept for describing the emerging virtual/digital context of archaeological research) and data archiving efforts in a series of field projects in the Middle East.

Campbell Price gave a brief but very informative overview of blogging at the Manchester Museum in his role as a curator for Egypt and the Sudan. Doctoral student Chiara Zuanni described her very promising study of visitors' and staff views of the permanent exhibition of archaeology at the Manchester Museum. Already the early results demonstrated clearly a number of conceptual and perceptual differences. Finally, Professor Sian Jones gave a talk of her work on ACCORD project on promoting community engagement in heritage using hands-on 3D modelling as a way of involving the public in interpreting artefacts.

In York, ARDKIS met Gareth Beale from the Centre for Digital Heritage (a collaborative initiative between York, Uppsala, Aarhus and Leiden described already earlier in this blog), and Holly Wright, professor Julian Richards and Katie Green from the Archaeology Data Service who gave us an informative overview of the activities of the institution and the state-of-the-art of archaeological data archiving in the UK.

måndag 31 mars 2014

ARKDIS in the UK

ARKDIS project is touring this week in the UK visiting colleagues and sites in Manchester, York and Birmingham areas. The trip started from the Manchester Museum where were kindly hosted by Bryan Sitch and Campbell Price with a tour to the Archaeology and Egyptian galleries spiced with very insightful reflections on the process of creating the current exhibitions and work for increasing both digital and non-digital engagement with the collections using a broad range of different approaches. The fundamental questions were and still are how to communicate with the public, how make the interactions 'natural' and engage the visitors beyond superficial admiration of objects.

måndag 17 mars 2014

Public access to results of federally funded research - an American perspective on a transnational issue

What do researchers, activists and politicians mean when  advocating for "open access" or "public access" to research data and publications? Which are the information policy arguments behind the advocacy and which implications follow higher demands on openness and access to research results and data?

Friday 14th of March Clifford Lynch (ph.D, adj. prof.) held a seminar at UC Berkeley School of Information on public access of results of federally funded research. Archaeology, being one of the areas receiving substantial funding from federal government and furthermore often being conducted by, or within a context of, government departments is directly affected by the policy development on "openness".

In his talk Lynch pointed to several of the complexities in and due to the current policy development, such as the lack of sufficiently developed storage solutions and data management plans - a lot of actors wants openness and access, but not as many wants to set up sufficient management systems. Moreover as is clear within archaeology, the information policy and related practices are international challenges circumscribed by national policy and administrative constraints.

Further reading by Clifford Lynch on the challenges in the curation of scholarly data.

fredag 7 februari 2014

Call for Papers: Digital Heritage 2014: Digital Communities in Action

The call for papers for Digital Heritage 2014 is now open. We would like to invite proposals for 20 minute papers and we welcome submissions from researchers in any field. This year the conference theme will be Digital Communities in Action and so we are particularly keen to encourage presentations which relate to the role of diverse communities in Digital Heritage research.
Our keynote talk will be delivered by Prof. Catherine Clark (Southampton) and will be entitled You are here: medieval heritage and the modern city.
The conference will be held on the 12th July 2014 in the Berrick Saul building at the University of York.  For more information visit our conference website (http://www.york.ac.uk/digital-heritage/events/cdh2014/).
The Centre for Digital Heritage is an international multi-institutional research centre focussed on innovative inter-disciplinary research in the field of Digital Heritage. The centre includes Aarhus University, Leiden University, Uppsala University and The University of York. For more information on the CDH visit our website (http://www.york.ac.uk/digital-heritage)
Please send abstracts of 200 words to cdh@york.ac.uk before Monday 14th April.

Stay up to date with conference information at http://www.york.ac.uk/digital-heritage/events/cdh2014/.

tisdag 4 februari 2014

Kicking the Centre for Digital Heritage off

Daniel and Isto participated in the kick-off workshop of the Centre for Digital Heritage (CDH) in Departments of ALM and Archaeology and Ancient History are partners in this international centre with a seat in York, known among other things of its archaeology department and the Archaeology Data Service, the UK archaeological data archive.
York last week. ARKDIS project and the

The centre is an international collaboration between the universities of York, Uppsala, Århus and Leiden in the field of digital heritage. The centre organises conferences, workshops, summer schools and various networking opportunities and collaborative activities for the participating institutions. The centre is inter-disciplinary with members from a broad variety of scholarly and scientific disciplines. The director of the centre is prof. Julian Richards and coordinator Gareth Beale, both from the University of York.

The first day of the meeting consisted of a long range of presentations of digital heritage research at the participating institutions and shorter lightning talks about individual research projects. We presented ARKDIS project and the Uppsala GIS Lab, and more specific projects about GIS in Östergötland and archaeological archiving. After very two intensive days of work it was quite apparent that the collaboration is very promising.

A list of current CDH activities can be found at the centre website at http://www.york.ac.uk/digital-heritage/. Forthcoming activities include a digital heritage conference in York on July 12, 2014, a programme of summer schools and another conference next year in Århus.

tisdag 14 januari 2014

Do you remember the essay in the landscape?

"Essay in the landscape", Åsa grave field, Sörmland
Within archaeology there are several forms of information due to, for example technical development and administrative standards. The same goes for the information about archaeological information.

As of today we have several examples of cultural heritage site information disseminated through for example apps and audio guides. While we enjoy the new possibilities the old forms of information about historical sites or events receive less attention. Signs decay or are, as the sign in the picture, since long fenced in beyond reach.

With the current awareness of how information and narratives about historical events and sites also are a constituent part of cultural heritage, the boundary between cultural heritage and cultural heritage information has become less definite. In relation to the "essay in the landscape"-style signs from previous times we arrive at a new question: when do an information sign about a heritage site turn into a part of the heritage site?

måndag 13 januari 2014

Open lecture: Antonia Davidovic Making Knowledge. The anthropology of archaeological knowledge production

Archaeological Information in the Digital Society (ARKDIS) research project presents an open lecture by Professor Dr. Antonia Davidovic (Environmental Anthropology, Christian-Albrechts-Universität Kiel, Germany) titled Making Knowledge. The anthropology of archaeological knowledge production on Tuesday 21 Januari, 2014 at 10.15-12.00 in Room 6/0031, English Park Campus, Uppsala University. Thunbergsvägen 3H, 75126 Uppsala.

torsdag 9 januari 2014

The Ostlänken archaeological investigations in GIS

One of the major archaeological projects in terms of rescue excavation in Sweden the coming years will be the Ostlänken project, a new railroad connecting the south of Stockholm (Järna) with Linköping through a double track railroad. Since this will pass through areas that are rich in archaeological remains, there will be much archaeological excavations carried out before the railroad is constructed. There are, however, also several sites that has been excavated previously, and identifying these and collecting the results of these is part of an archaeological investigation (Swe: utredning). Since this is such a large project with a lot of previous excavations, the County Boards (Länsstyrelse) in Östergötland and Södermanland, togheter with Trafikverket, has decided to start this work with a thorough examination of previous archaeological activities. The project is funded by Trafikverket and carried out at the department of archaeology, Uppsala University, with Daniel Löwenborg from the ARKDIS project as coordinator.
The "corridor" of Ostlänken and registered archaeological sites that previously seen some excavations.

The aim of the project is to create a GIS dataset with all previous excavations (back to 1965) so that they can be used as a starting point for further excavations and planning. Where available, we collect digital data and harmonise this (data structure and coordinate systems). Where there is no digital data we use plans that we georeference and digitise. The great challenge here is to use old excavations with old or local coordinate systems, which can be very time consuming to fix. It is really fascinating to see excavations from the 1970’s and 80’s “come to life” as they are brought into the system so that they can be seen in their correct location and compared to modern landscape and other excavations. This is a huge benefit compared to having to rely on reports with plans and maps that might be very difficult to relate to a modern map.
The burial ground Kvillinge 68:1, excavated in 1975. More info about this site at the Swedish National Heritage Board here

When the project is finished the data will be made available openly for further use and research through the Swedish National Data Service, where data previously collected likewise already is available, and this data forms part of the SND participation in the EU project ARIADNE. Having access to standardised detailed GIS data from excavations has great potential for research, especially if it will be possible to include data from new excavations in a searchable database that will bring together the data produced from all excavations. This will allow future archaeologists to analyse a digital archaeological puzzle at a landscape scale, using the information from a large number of excavations to better understand the development of settlements and society within the area.

The archaeologists working on the GIS project, Emelie Svenman, Amanda Norgren, Sebastian Lihaugen and Anders Bornfalk-Back.