Regional Science Advisors
The English Heritage Regional Science Advisors (RSAs) have a broad remit and liaise closely with local planning authorities in respect of archaeological science and planning lead interventions.
The RSAs provide regionally-based advice on all aspects of archaeological science such as geophysics, scientific dating, hydrology, geoarchaeology, biological materials and technological residues as well as artefact analysis and conservation. They work closely with a network of other specialists in English Heritage, and elsewhere, thus providing a “one-stop” shop to whom local authority curators, EH Inspectors of Ancient Monuments and archaeological consultants can turn for advice. An increasingly important aspect of their work is their role in strategic responses – for example in River Catchment Flood Management Plans and other Environment Agency consultations – and they contribute to EH policy documents where archaeological science is relevant.
Most have played a major role in the Regional Research Frameworks being developed to provide a strategic understanding of regional-based archaeology and that will then enable the use of limited funding to its best advantage. Training and standards are important aspects too for the RSAs and they regularly organise and run free training sessions on a range of subjects – recent ones have included geophysical techniques, animal and human bones, scientific dating and archaeobotany. These serve to promote current best practice to the wider archaeological community. In addition, each RSA has their own specialism, and continue to undertake research within that as the opportunity arises.
Contact details and further information are available from the Regional Advisors for Archaeological Science (RSAs) leaflet and Regional Science Advisors website.