Digital archaeology reloaded: from paperless documentation towards a data-driven open science

S3: Practical Applications | Keynote presentation
  • Julian Bogdani
    University of Rome La Sapienza

In the Humanities, Archaeology is probably the discipline that before any other has experimented with digital tools. Databases, GIS platforms, CAD software, vector and raster graphics software and statistical algorithms have always fascinated younger generations of archaeologists that have never stopped adapting methodologies developed by others to answer their own questions.

For decades the focus of many hybrid figures half-archaeologists, half-IT engineers has been the digitization of the process of creating knowledge in archaeology. Yet, it was the diffusion of broadband data networks and the rapid success of mobile devices that deeply changed our everyday practice. It is hard to find today any sector of archaeological research that does not make a massive use of digital technology, yet our research is still limited in a large measure by the very shape of the paper support, that continues to condition the way research is conducted and communicated. In order to explore a new era of Digital Archaeology, a change of cultural paradigm is needed to fully take advantage of the possibilities that technology enables us to achieve.