Digital Heritage in Archaeology in the 21st Century

Author(s): Laura Harrison

Year: 2018


The recent ‘digital turn’ in archaeology has spurred methodological advances and new research directions, with wide ranging impacts at multiple scales. The proliferation of imaging, remote sensing, laser scanning and photogrammetry applications has, at times, outpaced considerations about data archiving, digital epistemologies, and accessibility. This can lead to circumstances in which the creation of digital datasets is privileged over public dissemination or scholarly output – a situation that ultimately undermines the democratization of science. The future of digital heritage in archaeology thus lies in the integration of methodological approaches to digitization with explicit project outcomes targeted at various communities and stakeholders – an approach that might be thought of as "applied digital heritage." To illustrate this concept in practice, I offer a case study from the UNESCO World Heritage site of Villa Romana del Casale in Sicily, which was recently digitized with terrestrial laser scanning. These 3D data were incorporated into a research agenda and public outreach activities that bring issues of heritage accessibility, assessment, and digital knowledge production to the foreground.

Cite this Record

Digital Heritage in Archaeology in the 21st Century. Laura Harrison. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443934)

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min long: -10.151; min lat: 29.459 ; max long: 42.847; max lat: 47.99 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 21282