The fourth (4th) Public Archaeology Twitter Conference will take place on 5th September 2019. 

The theme of the conference will be:

Archaeology: Access, Barriers and Participation

Is archaeology ‘for all’ or does it remain an elite professional pursuit and a niche hobby? How can archaeologists best involve their stakeholders, co-produce archaeological work and ensure archaeology is accessible, safe and open? How do members of the public want to be involved? Do they at all? How does law, policy and planning affect how archaeology is undertaken and shared? Do you need a qualification to be an archaeologist, or is experience enough?


In #PATC4 we want to discuss Access, Barriers and Participation.

 ACCESS will look at the benefits of an open archaeology, whether that openness is demonstrated through physical access, interdisciplinarity, public engagement, or even how we define the very word. We want to examine what archaeology stands to gain by being open to all or, equally, how we address those situations where access can be productively other than open. When we call for better access, who are we asking for it? Who can help? Does accessibility have any limits in a meaningful archaeology.

 BARRIERS will examine the nature of the obstacles stopping people doing archaeology in the way they want to, or even being archaeologists at all. Every one of us has experienced barriers or gate-keeping. It is not always intentional, but sometimes very much is. Here we want to identify and examine instances of obstruction in archaeology, how to spot and understand them, how they come about, and what we can do to stop people being illegitimately stopped from doing their archaeology.

PARTICIPATION addresses the issue of who gets to do archaeology, how we encourage participatory practice and co-production beyond our immediate networks, and how we can create archaeological practices that seek to engage as widely as possible. Where do the main problems in encouraging participation lie? What are the benefits in working with archaeologists outside the profession, or academia? How can we get better at working in ways that encourage participation?

We welcome all proposals addressing these issues, or any other takes on the conference theme. We particularly welcome archaeologists practicing outside traditional archaeological spaces.

We also welcome papers on any other archaeological theme or subject area, which we will run in a ‘miscellaneous’ session, in case anyone wants the opportunity to participate in a digital archaeology conference, but won’t be able to speak to the public archaeology theme of this CfP.

Deadline for paper abstracts: July 31st 2019.

Please email your paper proposal to BOTH jamesdixonresearch@yahoo.co.uk and lorna.richardson@uea.ac.uk

We hold these conferences in order to continue our attempts to challenge the conference status quo in terms of communication, diversity and inclusivity. Conference attendance has many issues, such as funding and accessibility, so these formats can contribute information which can be used to make archaeology safer and more accessible within as well as outside the profession.

Conferences that cost over £400 to attend are no longer financially viable for most people. Conferences that charge large fees and discuss public and community archaeology are excluding the participants, communities and colleagues with whom we work who do not have access to travel and conference funds, those with caring responsibilities, those with disabilities, or simply those who do not have enough time to travel long distances. There needs to be an alternative.

The hashtag for the September 2019 event will be #PATC4.

If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to also use the contact page or tweet us @LornaRichardson or @James__Dixon