Endangered Archaeology in Arid Lands: Remote Sensing and Heritage Management

Author(s): Nichole Sheldrick

Year: 2017


The Endangered Archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa Project (EAMENA) uses satellite imagery to record damage and threats to the heritage of the MENA region. We are recording these data in an open-access database to create a useful platform for the management and protection of heritage in these countries.

A remote-sensing approach to heritage management has many advantages and is particularly effective in the arid MENA region due to limited vegetation and development. The availability of satellite imagery via platforms like Google Earth makes it possible to identify and monitor sites remotely in a swift and cost-effective manner. In addition, as a result of ongoing conflicts, it is increasingly difficult to gain access to many sites in the region, making remote sensing an ideal alternative.

Using case studies from Egypt, Libya, and Saudi Arabia, I will present EAMENA’s methodology and demonstrate its potential for heritage management in arid regions. Many sites in these regions are under threat from factors including development, mining, and agriculture. Although not all disturbances to sites in these regions can be prevented, by combining remote sensing with the work of local archaeologists, we can mitigate the effects of these problems in the future.

Cite this Record

Endangered Archaeology in Arid Lands: Remote Sensing and Heritage Management. Nichole Sheldrick. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431598)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -18.809; min lat: -38.823 ; max long: 53.262; max lat: 38.823 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15582