The genesis of archaeology is to understand who we are and our transformation process. While project-oriented research has sought to answer archaeological and/or community-led research questions, they have often overlooked the aspirations of the indigenous community. This seminar asks the question: what if our core aim was to learn from, and work for, local communities? Certainly, there are discrepancies between Indigenous and non-Indigenous worldviews, however, knitting archaeology into a public field of problem-solving can tap the strengths of both worldviews and further develop the field in innovative ways.
The seminar aims to “unsettle” established archaeological practice; and pave a path forward for integrated and engaged community archaeologies as a distinctive medium to safeguard material culture and heritage; strengthen the sense of community and social cohesion; promote community wellbeing; decipher conceptual and practical issues faced by the Indigenous Peoples; and initiate knowledge translation. In contemporary times, archaeology need not only be relevant to, and guided by, the communities with whom we work, but to be needed by these communities.