Coursework in disaster preparedness and emergency response in Iraq: Meeting immediate training needs at the Iraqi Institute

Author(s): Brian Michael Lione; Jessica Johnson

Year: 2015


Decades of regime rule, war and economic sanctions resulted in reductions in professional staff, isolation from the international community, and ultimately; neglect and deterioration of Iraqi cultural heritage. During a period of relative stability, the Iraqi Institute for the Conservation of Antiquities and Heritage (established through US funding in 2008) began offering academic programs in architectural conservation, artifact / object conservation, and archaeological site preservation to Iraqi professionals in 2009. Since its first courses, the Institute has educated over 250 Iraqis, most in courses delivered by the University of Delaware.

Managed by an Iraqi board of directors and an international Advisory Council, the Institute is a model of successful international collaboration. It is also noteworthy for its balanced approach to conservation education: graduates immediately apply their updated skills –and international connections– to improving the management of Iraqi sites and collections. This successful model was modified in 2014, when the University of Delaware temporarily suspended longer academic courses in favor of tailored training events in disaster preparedness and emergency response. This paper will discuss the intent, goals and content of these courses, and how graduates of the courses are applying new skills to protect and preserve cultural heritage in uncertain times.

SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit for instructions and more information.

Cite this Record

Coursework in disaster preparedness and emergency response in Iraq: Meeting immediate training needs at the Iraqi Institute. Brian Michael Lione, Jessica Johnson. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397273)

Spatial Coverage

min long: 25.225; min lat: 15.115 ; max long: 66.709; max lat: 45.583 ;