ScARF Newsletter – December 2020

Our December newsletter is out now! If you haven’t got a copy take a look here.

If you haven’t signed up for our newsletter yet – why not do so here to automatically get the latest ScARF news!

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ScARF Autumn Newsletter

Our Autumn newsletter is out now! If you haven’t got a copy take a look here

If you haven’t signed up for our newsletter yet – why not do so here to automatically get the latest ScARF news!

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Archaeological Scientists – ScARF Needs You!

Calling all Archaeological Scientists…. We’d like to share some exciting news! 

Over the next 18 months we have plans to work on updating the ScARF Archaeological Science Research Framework. It is now eight years since the original Science framework was launched and with many new and improved scientific techniques being used, a wider range of multidisciplinary approaches and ethical implications to consider, we want to revise our research questions and priorities for archaeological science in Scotland.

This updated Science framework will be designed to complement our regional research framework projects, which will naturally update the overall chronological picture across Scotland.   

We will be getting in touch with people who have been involved in the Science Panel previously or that we know are currently working on Archaeological Science projects in Scotland – but please get in touch with us directly if you haven’t heard from us yet and would like to be involved in our ScARF Science update project.

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Highland Archaeological Research Framework – Consultation Drafts Online Now!

We are delighted to announce the first two draft chapters for our Highland Archaeological Research Framework – Palaeolithic/Mesolithic & Medieval – as well as an impressive selection of case studies are now available for consultation online here on the ARCH website.

Please do check in regularly, as more chapters will be added in the coming weeks as we get more detailed comments from key contributors.

Your feedback is very welcome! We would really appreciate it if you could take the time to review these draft documents – are there key examples missing? Can you identify additional research gaps? Don’t miss out on your opportunity to contribute!

All comments on this first batch of draft chapters should be emailed to archhighland@googlemail.com by 31st December 2020.

HighARF launched with a symposium held at the Highland Council Chambers in Inverness in June 2018, where an impressive line-up of speakers gave an overview by period of what is currently known and where the gaps in our knowledge are. If you missed out on this event- or would like a re-cap, the talks have just been made available online here!

The final Highland Archaeological Research Framework will be published on the ScARF website upon completion summer 2021!

The Clava Cairns at Balnuaran of Clava, near Inverness form part of a distinct regional burial tradition – discussed in a new case study!

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ScARF September Update

Packed full of updates on the on-going Regional Research Frameworks, exciting new and forthcoming publications, and the results of our recent ScARF Diversity Survey – our summer update e-newsletter has been mailed out to all our subscribers! If you haven’t got a copy, take a look here.

If you haven’t signed up to our newsletter yet – why not do so here to automatically get the latest ScARF news!

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New Case Study – Scotland’s Rock Art Project (ScRAP) in Argyll and Bute

Regional Archaeological Research Framework for Argyll – New Case Study!

Since 2017, Scotland’s Rock Art Project (ScRAP) has been collaborating with communities across the country to enhance our understanding and sense of value of prehistoric carvings. ScRAP is a five year programme to record, research and raise awareness of prehistoric rock carvings across Scotland. Funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, the project is run by Historic Environment Scotland in collaboration with Edinburgh University and Glasgow School of Art.

Elaborate cup and ring motifs on a rock outcrop at Cairnbaan, Kilmartin ©ScRAP and HES

With around 700 carved rocks in the area – did you know Argyll and Bute is home to almost 20% of all known rock art in Scotland?

Working with ScRAP, community teams and archaeology undergraduate students have recorded over half of all the rock art in the region in detail – including more than 70% of that in the Kilmartin area!

ScRAP’s Strachur Rock Art Team recording a cupmarked stone in Glenadruel, Cowal ©ScRAP and HES

Find out more about the work of the project in Argyll and Bute here!

You can find out more about the project and search the rock art database on the ScRAP website. You can also view 3D models of Scotland’s rock art on the Sketchfab accounts for ScRAP and the Community Team Rock Art Teams

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COVID-19 Student Bursaries

Our ScARF student bursaries are normally only available to help travel and attendance at conferences or workshops. However, in light of COVID-19 and the unlikelihood that there will be many conferences and networking events taking place for the foreseeable future, we are keen to support Student/ECR research into Scottish archaeology in other ways.

We are therefore pleased to offer a small number of bursaries to help support wider student and ECR research activities in the coming months. 

A group of people on a hill side standing around a stone pit listening to an archaeologist talk about the site
ScARF supported students were amongst the SIRFA symposium delegates visiting the Neolithic Axe Factories at North Roe, Shetland ©ScARF

We are initially asking for applications for financial support where COVID-19 has affected student and ECR research plans and there may be additional costs which cannot be covered in another way. For example, we could help fund extra costs for access to research material and digital resources, or maybe cover costs where new software or online training is required. Please get in touch with us to discuss your application and to see if your project would be suitable. The main criteria is that the research being undertaken should be into some aspect of Scottish archaeology. We will consider retrospective applications – i.e. where the cost has already been incurred – but we will require receipts/proof of the additional expense. The maximum that can be applied for is £200. 

To apply please send us an email with a short summary of your research, how COVID-19 has affected it and a clear breakdown of the costs involved (c. 300 words), along with a short letter written by a referee to support your application.

Find out about how other students have benefited from our ScARF bursaries by visiting our Student Report pages.

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ScARF July Newsletter

Our summer newsletter should have hit everyone’s inboxes! If you haven’t got a copy then take a look here.

If you haven’t signed up for our newsletter yet – why not do so here to automatically get the latest ScARF news!

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Scottish Network for 19th Century European Cultures – New Framework

We are delighted to announce the launch of the Scottish Network for Nineteenth-Century European Cultures Framework – now hosted by the ScARF website.

Scotland was a leader of the world-changing industrialisation of the nineteenth century and a world-beating exporter of romantic nationalism—through the writings of Macpherson, Burns, and Scott—and scientific ideas and innovation. And yet, besides shipbuilding, textiles, mining and transport, the cultural significance of Scotland’s past could be easily taken for granted.

This framework was created as a result of a series of workshops funded by the Royal Society of Edinburgh and Society of Antiquaries of Scotland, which focused on exploring the inter-connectivity of people and culture in Scotland and Europe during the long nineteenth century – it critically assesses Scotland’s connections with European countries in the long nineteenth century. Taking a broad multidisciplinary approach and drawing on a range of contexts and methods­—such as literary criticism, cultural history, philosophy, science, technology and health history—the framework is built around several themes. The themes were designed in a way that brought together expertise on texts, material objects, and peoples that illuminated cultural practice in relation to local and global contexts.

Strong cross-cultural links are explored to highlight the importance of Scottish contributions to nineteenth-century culture

The Framework’s structure is designed to draw out a holistic understanding of the value and significance of Scotland’s relationships with European ‘nations-in-the-making’ in the long nineteenth century and enable us to reflect on what this knowledge then offers us for now. This emphasis on value provides the best hope of making a difference for the future. To this end, the Framework identifies research principles, problems, practices, and ideas for projects, some enhancing existing initiatives and others suggesting new directions.

Check out the Scottish Network for Nineteenth-Century European Cultures framework here!



This project was funded by the RSE and supported by the Society of Antiquaries of Scotland

Society of Antiquaries of Scotland

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Welcome to Our New Website!

We are really excited to launch our new ScARF website.

While you will find that the basic structure and the original content remains very familiar – so using the frameworks will not be too different to before – we can now do so much more! We will be adding new pages and content regularly including extra case studies, blogs and we can also now host additional research resources. This site will become the gateway to all our new Regional Research Frameworks as they are launched.

The new ScARF website is easier to navigate – with eye-catching landing pages, more links to current projects, relevant internal content and Case Studies, and improved imagery to showcase Scotland’s archaeological research!

This is just the start and we have lots of plans to improve the website over the coming year. In time, we will have an improved search facility that will enable you to search not just the ScARF National, thematic and regional frameworks – but also archaeological frameworks from across the UK! We are also working on new technology behind the scenes which will link our ScARF website to OASIS and Discovery and Excavation in Scotland reports – so as new discoveries are made, some research questions answered and new questions posed, our resource can be updated.

The new ScARF website will be regularly refreshed with blog posts, keeping you updated on the latest ScARF news, exciting new Case Studies and projects, and the progress of the Regional Archaeological Research Frameworks – see some images from the latest SIRFA symposium in Shetland above!

Get involved…

Please get in touch if you have any thoughts and comments about our new site. We would also love to receive ideas for new Case Studies that help to answer the research questions posed in our frameworks. If you would like to submit one to add to our research frameworks please let us know – there is so much amazing work to share and we now have the tools to do it!

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