Golden Age of Archaeology in Ireland is over Archaeologists must diversity into other sectors to safeguard the..

Golden Age of Archaeology in Ireland is over Archaeologists must diversity into other sectors to safeguard their jobs and plan for future growth

Colm Moloney, MD, of Headland Archaeology (Ireland) Ltd has said that Archaeologists in Ireland must diversify into other sectors if the industry is to survive the recession in Ireland. Speaking from their base in Little Island in Cork, Mr Moloney stated that during the economic boom, Ireland became a mecca for Archaeologists which was fuelled by massive infrastructural development coupled with stringent regulation of the treatment of cultural heritage by developers.

However, at the beginning of 2008, the golden age of Archaeology came to an abrupt end.”While other industries complain of 205 unemployment, we are hit with 80%. The average archaeological salary has dropped by 25% and work is now both temporary and highly transient” said Mr. Moloney.Citing a survey carried out by James Eogan, Vice Chairman of the Institute of Archaeologists in Ireland (The impact of the recession on Archaeology in the Republic of Ireland, Culture Lab Editions, 2010) he quoted “There has been a 37% reduction in the number of archaeological excavations between 2007 and 2008 and the further reduction of 44%between 2008 and 2009″Mr Moloney claims that this has had a profound impact on Irish Archaeology to the extent that specialist knowledge is leaving with the Archaeological workforce; talent and experience that will be difficult to replace.

To combat this, Headland Archaeology (Ireland) Ltd has diversified into other more specialised areas of archaeology including the development of products and services that can be exported.”Our experience and skill set can be adapted to new innovative directions in sectors such as education, tourism, planning and media while keeping the tradition of working in the construction sector” he explained.

The company recently opened a new office in Dublin and hired skilled staff including surveyors and geophysicists. The establishment of the Dublin office is part of a growth strategy that will see the development of regional centres of excellence tasked with developing products for the global heritage market. This office will complement the main offices in Cork, Galway, Edinburgh, Glasgow, Hereford and London with new offices planned for Belfast and continental Europe in early 2011. Headland Archaeology (Ireland) Ltd aim to be the Phoenix of the Irish commercial archaeology market by exporting their services abroad and concentrating on saving their industry.You can follow their journey either on twitter with @headlandarch, their blog or by calling (021)4520286

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