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"Collaborative" Archaeology: A proposed rubric-based assessment of archaeological projects with American Indian communities

Author(s): Elizabeth Eklund ; Lisa Palacios

Year: 2016

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Summary

In Transforming Archaeology, Atalay et al. (2013) have identified benefits of collaborative projects for both the discipline and participating communities. A well-designed collaborative project has the potential to both foster the application of standard archaeological research methods to questions of interest to various tribes and apply Indigenous research methods to standard archaeology inquires. We propose a standardized evaluation scorecard (rubric), to examine outcomes to American Indian communities participating in archaeological projects. Developing a rubric to assess archaeological projects reveals some benefits to American Indian communities participating in archaeological projects, including control of data, how information is understood or interpreted, and building of community capacity to engage in archaeology in the future. Revealing these benefits will demonstrate if the project contributes to strengthening tribal sovereignty and allows members a wider opportunity to engage in archaeology. This project studies collaborative methodologies assessing if the promised outcomes are fulfilled. We apply the rubric we developed to the University of Arizona’s Bureau of Applied Research in Anthropology (BARA) research with Blackfeet archaeology, and the School of Anthropology and Arizona State Museum’s archaeological project at Mission Guevavi. Our rubric allows us to visualize benefits and identify issues that have yet to be addressed.


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"Collaborative" Archaeology: A proposed rubric-based assessment of archaeological projects with American Indian communities. Elizabeth Eklund, Lisa Palacios. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 404459)


Keywords


Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America