A research infrastructure for archaeological excavation data
The rich heritage legacy from archaeological excavations in Sweden is largely inaccessible for data driven research. The Urdar project will ensure that digitally born documentation from excavations will not be lost to posterity and that it will be findable for researchers through linked data and open archives. Semantic linking of field documentation and research data will enable information to be optimized for Digital Humanities and the sciences.
This will contribute to interdisciplinary research as well as strengthen the position of archaeology in academic research. Urdar will bridge the divide between the heritage sector and the universities and facilitate research on the main empirical information for archaeology. Digital excavation documentation is a prime resource for exploring long-term perspectives in many different fields of research. Urdar will incorporate the FAIR principles (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable and Reusable), ensuring the results from field archaeology are primed for incorporation in a wider European framework of archaeological infrastructures through the use of common open standards and formats.
By making the complex contextual information from ancient sites FAIR and possible to link with museum collections and analytical results (e.g. paleoecology, osteology, 14C-dating, genomics etc), archaeology will gain increased relevance and contribute to a greater understanding of human history and prehistory in order to inform the present and future.
The project is funded by Riksbankens Jubileumsfond and is a collaboration between Uppsala University, the Swedish National Heritage Board, Umeå University and Lund University.