Archaeology is about the present and the future, as much as it is about the past. The study of the human condition as expressed in landscape, architecture and artefacts illustrates a deep history that has witnessed violent, collaborative and compassionate human interactions. Archaeology centers have a fundamental role as key institutional loci of undergraduate recruitment, graduate student training, and faculty development, a role that can be brought to bear on instigating essential change in the discipline.
The ACC is currently engaged in action-oriented work in three areas.
- Roadblocks to diversity and inclusion: In 2021, the ACC launched a survey to examine the hidden costs of archaeological field schools. Analysis of the data is ongoing. Our goal is to identify hidden costs and provide centers with a set of strategies for overcoming them so these key centers of training can become more inclusive and help reshape the discipline.
- The culture of field schools: The ACC is preparing a second survey to examine the culture of archaeological field schools. Our goal is to clearly identify cultural problems limiting participation in field opportunities and help bring about real and consequential change through more welcoming environments.
- Changing the stories that archaeology tells and who tells them: In 2020-21, ACC member institutions sponsored the From the Margins to the Mainstream webinar series. In 2022, we will be co-sponsoring two podcast series: one from SAPIENS focused on reshaping the public imagination of archaeology and archaeologists, and a second from the ACC that will bring current graduate students into conversation with the featured archaeologists of the SAPIENS series. Together, we hope too change the popular imagination of archaeology, as well as our own.