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Digital Archaeological Archiving in Israel

Sveta Matskevich and Liat Weinblum

Cite this as: Matskevich, S. and Weinblum, L. 2021 Digital Archaeological Archiving in Israel, Internet Archaeology 58. https://doi.org/10.11141/ia.58.10


In this article, the authors present two points of view on the preservation and dissemination of archaeological data in Israel: an official version of the policy makers (the Israel Antiquities Authority, henceforth IAA), and the view from the archaeological, especially academic, community outside the IAA. This includes an assessment of the strategies undertaken (or not) over the last 40+ years resulting in the majority of data being inaccessible, and documenting significant data loss since the 1990s. This is followed by current work to address these issues, including not only efforts to digitise but misconceptions about the problems digitisation both solves and creates, along with recommendations for how to approach the issues going forward.

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  • Keywords: archaeology, digital archiving, records, excavation, data, law, Israel
  • Accepted: 21 January 2021. Published: 31 May 2021
  • Funding: This article was funded by SEADDA as part of COST Action 18128, Horizon 2020 Framework Programme of the European Union
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Corresponding author: Sveta MatskevichORCID logo
The Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Liat WeinblumORCID logo
Israel Antiquities Authority

Full text

Table 1: Accessibility (physical and digital) of the archives of the Israel Antiquities Authority

Gopher, A., Greenberg, R. and Herzog, Z. 2005 'Archaeological public policy' in D. Korn (ed) Public Policy in Israel, Lanham: Lexington Books. 191-204.

Khalaily, H., Re'em, A., Vardi, J. and Milevski, I. 2020 'Foreword: the Motza (Moẓa) excavations and beyond' in H. Khalaily, A. Re'em, J. Vardi and I. Milevski (eds) The Mega Project at Motza (Moẓa): The Neolithic and Later Occupations up to the 20th Century, Jerusalem: Israel Antiquities Authority. 9-18. https://doi.org/10.2307/j.ctv1b9f5bh.3

Kletter, R. 2006 Just Past? The Making of Israeli Archaeology, London: Equinox.

Matskevich, S. 2015 'Off the Record'. Recording Systems for Archaeological Excavations in the Levant: Past and Future, Unpublished PhD thesis, The Hebrew University of Jerusalem. https://www.academia.edu/32320876/Off_the_Record_Recording_Systems_for_Archaeological_Excavations_in_the_Levant_Past_and_Future

Münger, S. and Weinblum, L. in press 'The archaeological documentation system DANA (Digital Archaeology and National Archives): a view from the field' in U. Davidovich, S. Matskevich and N. Yahalom (eds) Material, Method, and Meaning. Papers in Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology in honor of Ilan Sharon, Münster: Zaphon.

Sharon, I. (ed) 2019 Tel Dor, Area G Report [dataset], Open Context. https://doi.org/10.6078/M7PG1PTT

Weinblum, L. and Münger, S. 2015 'DANA (Digital Archaeology and National Archives) - a new software tool for field archaeologists' in S. Campana and R. Scopigno (eds) Keep the Revolution Going. 43rd Computer Applications and Quantitative Methods in Archaeology, Book of Abstracts, Siena: University of Siena. 46.

Internet Archaeology is an open access journal based in the Department of Archaeology, University of York. Except where otherwise noted, content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 (CC BY) Unported licence, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided that attribution to the author(s), the title of the work, the Internet Archaeology journal and the relevant URL/DOI are given.

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