Gormley addresses 6th World Archaeological Congress


Mr. John Gormley, TD, Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government addressed the delegates to the 6th World Archaeological Congress (WAC-6) at a State Reception he hosted in the Royal Hospital Kilmainham to mark the event.

Mr Gormley said that Ireland was honoured to host this prestigious event. Over 1,300 of the world's most distinguished archaeologists are attending the Congress which is taking place on the campus of University College Dublin, from the 29th of June to the 4th of July.

The Congress will cover a wide range of themes, many of which will be of particular interest to archaeologists in Ireland, including -

  • Archaeology in the Digital Age;
  • Archaeology, Development and Quality Assurance;
  • Archaeological Landscapes - and
  • Communicating Archaeology.

The Minister said that the World Archaeological Congress was particularly welcome to Ireland at a time when he has initiated a comprehensive review of archaeological policy and practice. Minister Gormley also announced that funding had been approved for 14 projects to be grant aided under his Department's new Irish National Strategic Archaeological Research (INSTAR) Programme 2008.

The INSTAR Programme is being funded by the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government at an initial level of €1m in 2008, with the intention of continuing to roll it out in future years.

The Minister said that the INSTAR Programme would contribute to a better understanding of Ireland's archaeological heritage by tackling key questions about our past. This approach is under-pinned by the wider need to place archaeological research into the context of wider public access and life-long learning.

He paid warm tribute to the Heritage Council's role in establishing and administering the new fund, stating - "I am delighted that the Council agreed to administer the INSTAR Programme and wish to thank the Council and its staff for the trojan work done in making this programme a reality so quickly after its initial announcement."

List of INSTAR Programme 2008 Projects

Applicant: Discovery Programme
Title: SHARE I.T. (Spatial Heritage and Archaeological Research Environment I.T.)
Partners: Digital Media Centre, DIT, UCD School of Archaeology, Margaret Gown & Co. Ltd.

Applicant: Discovery Programme
Title: Littoral Archaeology Project
Partners: The Archaeological Diving Company Ltd., QUB, UCD.

Applicant: Discovery Programme
Title: Developing a wood and charcoal database for Ireland
Partners: Irish Wood Anatomist Association, Dutch State Service for Archaeology, Cultural Landscape and Monuments.

Applicant: Dublin City Council
Title: Medieval Dublin City Archaeological Research Agenda
Partners: DCC, Margaret Gowen & Co. Ltd., Trinity College, O'Connor SUTTON, Cronin & Assoc. Engineers, Lisa Edden Engineers.

Applicant: Kilkenny Archaeology
Title: Archeological Investigations in Kilkenny City 1975 - 2007: Phase 1, A Proposal for Knowledge Creation
Partners: Department of History, NUI Maynooth.

Applicant: National University of Ireland, Galway
Title: Burren Landscape and Settlement: Developing a Research Framework
Partners: National Monuments Service, DEHLG, TVAS Ireland Ltd.

Applicant: Queens University Belfast School of Geography, Archaeology and Palaeoecology
Title: Cultivating Societies: Assessing the evidence for agriculture in Neolithic Ireland
Partners: QUB, University of Oxofrd, Meriel McClatchie,NRA, CRDS. Ltd., UCD, National Museums Scotland, University College London, University of York.

Applicant: Royal Holloway, Department of Geography, University of London
Title: Examining the relationship between climate change and human activities in the wetlands of Ireland
Partners: UL, Archaeological Development Services Ltd.

Applicant: Ulster University Coleraine, Centre for Maritime Archaeology
Title: Archaeological applications of the Joint Irish Bathymetric Survey
Partners: Marine Institute, Environment and Heritage Services Northern Ireland.

Applicant: University College Cork, Department of Archaeology
Title: Making Christian Landscapes
Partners: UCC, Aegis Archaeology Ltd. University of Newcastle.

Applicant: University College Dublin, Micheal O'Cleirigh Institute
Title: Mapping Death: People, Boundaries and Territories in Ireland 1st to 8th Centuries A.D. Applicant:
Partners: UCD, Dr. Elizabeth O'Brien, Discovery Programme.

Applicant: University College Dublin, School of Archaeology
Title: Archaeology in Inner City Dublin
Partners: UCD, Dublin City Council, CREATE

Applicant: University College Dublin, School of Archaeology
Title: An integrated comprehensive GIS model of landscape evolution and land use history in the River Boyne Valley
Partners: UCD, Meath County Council, University of Southampton, Talamh Ireland.

Applicant: University College Dublin, School of Archaeology
Title: Early Medieval Archaeology Project
Partners: UCD, QUB, CRDS Ltd., ACS Ltd., Margaret Gowen & Co. Ltd.