1.5 Aims and Methodology of PKARF

The key priorities were to:

  • publish concise and accessible summaries of current knowledge;
  • produce clearly defined research priorities and questions to underpin future work.

It is envisaged that the resource will primarily assist the commercial/planning archaeology sector, community-based groups developing new projects and university students in identifying dissertation topics.

A Steering Group was established to guide the framework’s development with professional, academic and community expertise. Individual members are listed in the Acknowledgements (below). They represented a wide range of local and national stakeholders, in addition to the funder and delivery organisation, including the local ‘curatorial’ archaeologists and The Association of Local Government Archaeological Officers (ALGAO Scotland); commercial archaeology practices and the Federation of Archaeological Managers and Employers (FAME); the museums sector; university researchers and the Living On Water Project; community archaeology volunteer interests; the Perthshire Society of Natural Science (PSNS); the Tayside and Fife Archaeological Committee (TAFAC); Historic Environment Scotland’s National Record of the Historic Environment (NRHE); and the Scottish Archaeological Research Framework (ScARF).

The framework was realised through a three-phase work plan of assessment, review and production and began with an assessment of current knowledge through a review of existing literature and data sources, and contact with active researchers and specialists. A chronological chapter structure was adopted to maintain alignment with ScARF and a lead contributor appointed for seven time periods. Their role was to provide a brief overview and propose research priorities and questions for their period of expertise, and these were presented at a conference in August 2019, where a wide range of stakeholders then contributed through workshops. Following the conference, comments and recommendations were integrated into the outline chapters and additional specialists were commissioned to contribute. Draft chapters were then peer-reviewed and offered for public consultation before being finalised.

An Environmental and Archaeological Science panel, consisting of 12 members, was formed in December 2019 following the recommendations from the 2019 conference. The panel members developed a chapter on environmental and archaeological science to complement the period chapters. Again, individual members are listed in the Acknowledgements.

Policy Context

The PKARF addresses nationally strategic priorities for the historic environment Our Place in Time and Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy and the framework’s objectives correspond with the following aims, addressing aspects of Aims 1-4 of the Strategy, delivering specifically on Objective 2.1:

Our Place in Time (OPIT)Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy (SAS)
Aim 1: UnderstandingAim 1: Delivering Archaeology
Aim 2: ProtectingAim 2: Enhancing Understanding
Aim 4: ValuingAim 3: Caring and Protecting
 Aim 4: Encouraging Greater Engagement

The objectives of PKARF are detailed in the table below with the national strategical aims that each is aligned to listed in the adjoining columns.

PKARF ObjectivesOPIT AimSAS Aim
Create a research strategy that encourages the improvement of how archaeological projects in Perth and Kinross are structured and delivered.11
Review the current state of our knowledge and understanding of the archaeology of Perth and Kinross and create concise and accessible chronological summaries.12
Produce clearly defined and accessible research objectives and priorities that can be used to underpin future archaeological research.12
Create research priorities as a resource for the commercial/planning archaeology sector, providing weight to the mitigation process ahead of development and so helping to safeguard the historic environment. It will also enable the work to be better aligned with regional and national research priorities, contributing more holistically to our broader understanding of Scotland’s past.23
Involve a diverse range of stakeholders in the framework, raising awareness of the historic environment and offering opportunities for all to engage, and develop a sense of value and ownership over its future.44