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Archaeological site management


Admission requirements

The course is open to students with Archaeological Heritage Management in a World Context as their first or second specialisation, and to RMA’s following the track Archaeological Heritage in a Globalising World.
MA students are expected to have followed the course Current Issues in Archaeological Heritage Management.
Students who start in February should contact the lecturer before the start of the course


Students will gain an understanding of the various aspects that need to be considered in the management of archaeological sites. These can be World Heritage sites, but not exclusively.
We will look into the legal context, conservation issues, the values and interests of stakeholders, sustainable approaches towards visitor and tourism management, and the social and economic impact on local communities.

During the course examples of existing management plans will be discussed and evaluated, and students will actively work on developing a management plan for an existing heritage site.
It is an interactive course in which students will regularly discuss their progress with each other and the challenges they encounter. During the process, students can propose specific topics or challenges they would like to discuss with experts. This may be on conservation issues, on negotiating with land owners, on maintenance of a protected landscape, on inspiration for visualisation opportunities, on including local communities, and much more.

Course objectives

  • In-depth understanding of various aspects of managing archaeological sites (protecting, interpreting and experiencing the heritage);

  • In-depth understanding of the dilemmas of managing archaeological resources;

  • Insight into the diversity of approaches and stakeholders;

  • Awareness of the relation with stakeholders and society;

  • Ability to gather site-specific data and information and process it to construct a management plan;

  • Ability to analyse and discuss literature and to apply it to one’s own case study.

h3, Timetable

Course schedule details can be found in the MA time schedule.

Mode of instruction

Interactive tutorials.
The students get instructions and are guided in the process of gathering material and information that is needed to write (or revise) a management plan for a site. They are expected to actively gather and process the required material. Some guest lecturers will discuss their experiences in daily practice.

Course load

The course load will be distributed as follows:

  • 28 hours of tutorial (2 ects);

  • 20 hours of practical work (1 ects);

  • 140 pages of literature (1 ects);

  • Management plan (1ects).

Assessment method

  • Quality of the process of gathering and processing information (40%);

  • Management plan (60%).

All assessment deadlines (exams, retakes, paper deadlines etc.) can be found in the examination schedule.

Reading list

Literature will be indicated during the course.


Registration for the course is not necessary, registration for the exam is mandatory. For instructions, see the Registration in uSis page.


For more information about this course, please contact mw. dr. M.H. van den Dries.

h3, Remarks

Compulsory attendance.