Collision or Collaboration? Archaeology Encounters Economic Development: An Introduction

Part of the One World Archaeology book series (WORLDARCH)


Economic development activities globally have increasingly severe consequences for the practice of archaeology. Archaeologists’ ambivalent views on engaging with development, however, affect the prospects for improvement of living standards the communities in which we work, and for the ability of the discipline to influence the powerful corporate, financial, and political forces behind development efforts. This volume explores, through theoretical, ethical, and case study analysis, the challenging choices facing the discipline in a fast-developing world: Is it better to collaborate with development forces in order to preserve heritage and the archaeological record and, perhaps to support local communities? Or is it better to contend with demands for economic growth and so collide with potentially irresistible demands. This chapter presents the context in which these issues must be considered, and reviews the themes arising from the chapters in this volume, which in the aggregate evaluate the question of Collision or Collaboration from a global perspective.


Archaeology Economic development Political engagement Sustainable development International agreements Archaeological ethics Commercial development Heritage preservation 


  1. Adams, J. L. (2010). Interrogating the equity principle: The rhetoric and reality of management planning for sustainable archaeological heritage tourism. Journal of Heritage Tourism, 5(2), 103–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Aitchison, K., & Edwards, R. (2008). Discovering the archaeologists of Europe: United Kingdom. Reading, UK: Institute of Field Archaeologists.Google Scholar
  3. Bureau of Labor Statistics. (2015). Occupational Employment and Wages May 2014 OES 19-301 and OES 25-1061. Retrieved August 20, 2015, from
  4. Carver, M. (1996). On archaeological value. Antiquity, 70, 45–56.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Castañeda, Q., & Mathews, J. P. (2013). Archaeology meccas of tourism: Exploration, protection, and exploitation. In C. Walker & N. Carr (Eds.), Tourism and archaeology (pp. 37–64). Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press.Google Scholar
  6. CIFA. (2014). Code of conduct. Retrieved February 13, 2016, from
  7. Cohen, J., & Easterly, W. (2009). What works in development? Thinking big and thinking small (Kindle edition). Washington, DC: The Brookings Institution. Retrieved from Scholar
  8. Darvill, T. (2005). “Sorted for ease and whiz”?: Approaching value and importance in archaeological resource management. In C. Mathers, T. Darvill, & B. J. Little (Eds.), Heritage of value, archaeology of renown (pp. 21–43). Gainesville: University of Florida Press.Google Scholar
  9. Deaton, A. (2013). The Great Escape: Health, wealth and the origins of inequality. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  10. EAA. (2016). European Association of Archaeologists Codes. Retrieved March 23, 2016, from
  11. Equator Principles Association. (2013). The Equator principles. Retrieved August 20, 2015, from
  12. Fleming, A. K. (2014). Archaeology and economic development: Commitment and support from the World Bank Group. Public Archaeology, 13(1–3), 135–150.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Lafrenz Samuels, K. (2009). Trajectories of development: International heritage management of archaeology in the Middle East and North Africa. Archaeologies, 5(1), 68–91.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Lafrenz Samuels, K., & Lilley, I. (2015). Transnationalism and heritage development. In L. Meskell (Ed.), Global heritage: A reader (pp. 217–239). Malden, MA: Wiley/Blackwell.Google Scholar
  15. LEAP. (2016). Leaders in energy and preservation. Retrieved April 23, 2016, from
  16. Meskell, L. (2012). The nature of heritage: The New South Africa. Chichester, UK: Wiley-Blackwell.Google Scholar
  17. Oxford Economics. (2013). The economic impact of the UK Heritage Tourism Economy. London: Heritage Lottery Fund.Google Scholar
  18. Rodrik, D. (2007). One economics, many recipes: Globalization, institutions and economic growth. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  19. SAA. (1996). Principles of archaeological ethics. Retrieved March 29, 2016, from
  20. Shepherd, N., & Haber, A. (2011). What’s up with WAC? Archaeology and ‘Engagement’ in a globalized world. Public Archaeology, 10(2), 96–115.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Smith, C. (2011). Errors of fact and errors of representation: Response to Shepherd and Haber’s Critique of the World Archaeological Congress. Public Archaeology, 10(4), 223–234.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Stiglitz, J. (2003). Globalization and its discontents. New York, NY: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
  23. United Nations. (2015). The Millennium Development Goals Report. New York, NY: United Nations.Google Scholar
  24. Wait, G., & Altschul, J. H. (2014). Cultural heritage management and economic development programmes: Perspectives from desert fringes where IGOs and NGOs have no locus. Public Archaeology, 13(1–3), 151–163.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Welch, J. R., & Ferris, N. (2014). “We have met the enemy and it is us”: Transforming archaeology through sustainable design. In S. Atalay, L. R. Clauss, R. H. McGuire, & J. R. Welch (Eds.), Transforming archaeology: Activist practices and prospects (pp. 91–114). Walnut Creek, CA: Left Coast Press.Google Scholar
  26. World Bank. (2016). International Tourism, number of arrivals. Retrieved April 24, 2016, from
  27. WTTC. (2015). Country reports. Retrieved August 20, 2015, from

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and AnthropologyPhiladelphiaUSA

Personalised recommendations