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MILJØFORSK-Miljøforskning for en grønn samfunnsomstilling

LAND: The post-medieval archaeological resource in and around Norwegian towns: heritage potential, protection and management

Awarded: NOK 6.5 mill.

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Project Period:

2009 - 2017


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The project aims to enhance the knowledge base for long-term cohesive use and management of the urban landscape and buried archaeological resource associated with Norwegian towns of the post-medieval period. In Norway archaeological deposits which accumul ated in urban centres following the Reformation (1536/37) have no legal protection. This is in contravention of the Convention on the Protection of the Archaeological Heritage of Europe (Malta Convention, 1992) which Norway has ratified. The signatory cou ntries are pledged to regard all traces and remains of the archaeological heritage, regardless of age, as worthy of protection and study. This has resulted in the ongoing physical destruction of a valuable archive of post-medieval urban society, a lack of academic research and generation of knowledge, and the under-exploitation of the post-medieval resource as a public asset and source of value creation. There is consequently a need for the production of a knowledge base, in this instance by means of surv ey and assessment of the nature of the resource in a pilot research area. Further, an assessment of the need for, and the delineation of, new management measures and practices required to protect and administer this resource. Finally there is a need for a n assessment of the resource?s value in a number of related spheres, including academic and public knowledge, urban planning, and value-creation in local and regional contexts. The project aims to develop a method of resource assessment and management str ategies which can be implemented nationally. In order to provide a manageable data foundation for the central objectives, research will focus on a pilot study of a defined geographical area containing a representative sample of medieval and post-medieval urban centre with cultural heritage remains that fall under a number of cultural-heritage management authorities. Two doctoral research scholarships will be advertised.

Funding scheme:

MILJØFORSK-Miljøforskning for en grønn samfunnsomstilling