Engagement and Outreach


Engagement and Heritage Outreach Working Group will address several of the key objectives of the Archaeology 2030 Strategy under Aim 4: Engaging and Enriching People’s LivesCommunicating the benefits of archaeology to as many people as possible 

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Key Areas:

There is a need to actively seek out ways to enable the wider public to know about, see or participate in archaeology. The working group will strive to: 

  • Raise awareness of the value of heritage archives  
  • Champion the potential for research and publication from existing archives and records, 
  • Initiate community engagement projects that explore and enhance the value of heritage archives  
  • Develop a more proactive approach to explaining how heritage contributes to our economy, our community identity, our sense of place, our tourism, health and well-being 
  • Create opportunities to engage with archaeology in the commercial sector/ through development-led projects 
  • Ensure that the Research Framework approach is publicly accessible and understood, particularly for non-archaeologists 
  • Develop projects to harness the potential for archaeology to contribute to education, community and tourism/ rural development. 

Strategic Objectives

Value; Collaborative Opportunities; Accessibility

Participants and Collaboration

Engagement with regulatory bodies and the commercial archaeological sector will be important when discussing the public benefit in commercial development, for instance, while strong links to the emerging Research Framework will ensure that outputs are accessible and that projects can be developed to feed into emerging research questions. 

A family visiting Dunluce Castle, Co. Antrim.

A family visiting Dunluce Castle, Co. Antrim.

Key People

Working Group Chair: Dr Colm Donnelly & Prof Eileen Murphy

Dr Colm Donnelly is the Co-Director of the Centre for Community Archaeology at Queen’s University Belfast. A historical archaeologist and an experienced field archaeologist, his research interests are Medieval and 17th century buildings, Medieval Gaelic Ireland, children’s burial grounds, the Irish diaspora in 19th century Massachusetts, and community archaeology. He teaches Archaeological Excavation (ARP1014) and Historic Ireland (ARP2045). Colm sits on the Project Board as the co-chair for the Engagement and Outreach Working Group.

Eileen Murphy is Professor of Archaeology in the School of Natural and Built Environment, Queen’s University Belfast. She is Co-Director of the Centre for Community Archaeology at Queen’s and has been a leader of the Belfast Branch of the Young Archaeologists’ Club at Queen’s since its foundation in 2006. Her research focuses on human skeletal populations from prehistoric Russia and all periods in Ireland. She is particularly interested in the use of approaches from bioarchaeology and funerary archaeology to help further understanding of the lives and experiences of people in the past. She has published widely and recent books include The Life and Times of Takabuti in Ancient Egypt: Investigating the Belfast Mummy (co-editor with Rosalie David, 2021) and The Forgotten Cemetery: Excavations at Ranelagh, Co. Roscommon (with Shane Delaney, 2022). Eileen sits on the Project Board as the co-chair for the Engagement and Outreach Working Group

Draft Working Group Action Plan

View Document

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