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Archaeological Data Archiving in Croatia

Filomena Sirovica and Ivan Radman-Livaja

Cite this as: Sirovica, F. and Radman-Livaja, I. 2023 Archaeological Data Archiving in Croatia, Internet Archaeology 63.


Dealing with various aspects of archaeological research typically results in diverse and often very large datasets and, over the last few decades, primarily in a born-digital format. These data may be produced in many ways, but when we refer to archaeological data, we typically mean the primary data collected during various forms of archaeological fieldwork. Such data represent the primary information about fieldwork procedures and original archaeological contexts, while in the case of archaeological excavation, it serves as the sole remaining evidence of the contextual significance of archaeological features and finds. Therefore, it holds immense importance for archaeological heritage, and undoubtedly, the procedures for data archiving become the most vital prerequisite for its long-term preservation.

In Croatia, the legal framework for managing cultural heritage is defined by the Act on the Protection and Preservation of Cultural Objects. Simultaneously, archaeological activities are governed by the Ordinance on Archaeological Research, which, together with the Act on Museums, also regulates the archiving of field documentation. These regulations stipulate that, in addition to archaeological finds, fieldwork documentation must be submitted to a competent public museum institution. Consequently, museums bear legal responsibility for the archaeological documentation and its archiving. While Croatian museums have established long-standing and standardising procedures for collecting data on museum objects, no standards or guidelines have ever been established for archiving datasets created during archaeological fieldwork. Given the absence of a national digital data archiving system for archaeology, this article focuses on considering the factors necessary to establish an appropriate infrastructure for digital data archiving in Croatia.

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  • Keywords: archaeology, digital data, fieldwork documentation, legal framework, Croatia
  • Accepted: 1 Nov 2022. Published: 21 Aug 2023
  • 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: Filomena SirovicaORCID logo
Archaeological Museum in Zagreb, Croatia

Ivan Radman-LivajaORCID logo
Archaeological Museum in Zagreb, Croatia

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