(Regierungspräsidium Stuttgart, Esslingen, Germany)

Keywords: Archiving, Long Term Curation, Best practice

The initial ARCHES-Project of the Archaeological Archives Working Party of the Europae Archaeologiae Consilium ran from June 2012-May 2014. It was financed to 50% by a grant from the European Commission’s Education, Audiovisual and Cultural Executive Agency under the Culture Programme 2007-2013. Data on archiving practice was collected in surveys by the participants. Workshops in each of the members’ languages were held to encourage bidirectional information on local/national archiving practices and visions. As a result, six principal activity areas in the compilation and preparation of an archaeological archive were identified: collection, analysis, reporting, ordering, packing and transfer. This result is reflected in The ARCHES Guide: The “Standard and Guide to Best Practice in Archaeological Archiving in Europe”, which was written both to help institutions with systems in place to refine their techniques as well as to offer initial guidance for setting up archaeological archiving standards where none yet exist. In seven languages “The Guide” sets out project planning, archive standards, collection of data, recording of information, treatment of records, finds and digital data, the analysis and archiving the results, packing of records and finds, the presentation of digital data, ordering and indexing for archive transfer and the long-term curation and management of archaeological archives (sustainability). Especially innovative are the multi language tables of roles and responsibilities and a comprehensive dedicated bibliography on archaeological archiving. After the end of the financing period ARCHES has not come to an end. It remains up to date on its home page and has an active LinkedIn presence with almost 1000 members. As it becomes better known, institution from around the world are looking to ARCHES to guide their own archiving procedures. This contribution hopes to increase the visibility of ARCHES for the archaeological community and encourage colleagues to take part in the ARCHES dialogue.

Relevance conference | Relevance session:
Win win situation: ARCHES offers guidance for correct archaeological archiving, the ARCHES project benefits from input from the international participants of the conference.

International guidelines for archaeological archiving published (so far) in seven languages

Archiving practice
Long-term curation and management of archaeological archives (sustainability).