A Culture of Innovation in Archaeological Science at McMaster University

Author(s): Aubrey Cannon; Andrew Roddick

Year: 2017


Archaeological science has exploded globally in the past several decades, a pattern that is evident in the range and sophistication of scholarship at a variety of Canadian institutions. McMaster University, however, has played, and continues to play, a particularly important role in the development of archaeological science. In this introductory paper, we explore the genealogy and early impact of a number of pioneering scholars at McMaster. We highlight the pivotal role of the Canadian Foundation for Innovation (CFI) in enabling the development of groundbreaking laboratory facilities for archaeology. We outline what we describe as the "cultural transmission" of the practice of archaeological science. What began with early pioneering developments in methods and applications was refined through the construction of CFI funded facilities. These spaces have permitted the emergence of new research applications at McMaster and, through graduates who have extended this legacy of innovation, at other institutions in Canada and internationally. We also argue that the diversity of archaeological science research at McMaster has been maintained with a particular anthropological focus. As will be seen in the papers in this session, exploring social questions of the past requires both analytical skill and a sophisticated theoretical awareness.

Cite this Record

A Culture of Innovation in Archaeological Science at McMaster University. Aubrey Cannon, Andrew Roddick. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431382)


Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15903