Symposium on the 21st of February, 2020
For the Abstract Booklet, please follow the link below. The PDF will then open in a new browser window, and can be downloaded.
Abstract Booklet 

Location: RCE, Kinderdijkzaal, Amersfoort

The symposium was originally structured in three thematic, cross-disciplinary sessions. We, the organising committee decided, however, to abandon the separate sessions and dedicate the symposium to three overarching themes instead. 

The symposium opens with a brief welcoming address by the organisers, followed by a fully packed       schedule of both oral presentations and interactive posters and demos. The day will close with a keynote lecture delivered by digital humanities specialist Prof. Dr. Sarah Kenderdine (École polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne). The symposium aims in particular to:

  • Reflect on the information examined and  put in practice during the workshops;
  • Offer greater theoretical embedding of 3D visualisation methods;
  • Assess their role in knowledge production.

Speakers with ranging specialisms such as Dr. Nicoló dell’Unto (University of Lund), Prof. Dr. Patrick Randolph Quinney (University of Central Lancashire) and Dr. Martijn Manders (RCE/Leiden University), Dr. Chiara Piccoli (University of Amsterdam), Dr. Canan Çakirlar (University of Groningen) will present their approaches and theoretical reflections on these matters, adding to current knowledge and fostering best practices in both education and research realms.

Themes Addressed

The symposium revolves around three main interdisciplinary themes, including the use of 3D technology as a research and teaching tool, the formalization of the virtual reconstruction process, and the accessibility and publication of digital archives. All contributions provide innovative insights into these macro-themes, often touching upon one or more in the same paper, showing how intertwined these topics are.

In particular, contributions focusing on methodologically embedding 3D technology within the research process, illustrate how such technology forms an active part in the production of new knowledge, insights, and results. The deployment of innovative technology should thus move beyond the mere automation of the traditional process, the accumulation of more data, or the sake of efficiency, to considerations about how the technology actually contributes to knowledge creation and research outcomes. 

A large part of the contributions collected are methodology-driven and bring forward a critical, reflexive stance on the role that 3D visualisation techniques could play in the process of reconstructing the past, being either taphonomic processes, distribution models or reconstructions of lost architecture. These processes are the most valuable and productive part of research, and the vast meta- and paradatasets should be recorded and saved in an effective way. Yet, they often stress the lack of a shared best practice of Dutch 3D archaeological visualisation. In this light, the works presented at the symposium will provide valuable information about such recording strategies, and by comparison show or contribute to the formulation of shared practices and formalisation of multiple and diverse documentation methods. 

Lastly, several contributions deal with the longstanding issue of storing and publishing web archives. Assemblages recorded through 3D technologies not only require a massive storage space, but also interoperability and re-use of different file formats and accessibility of their underlying meta- and paradata, which are still a challenge. Digital archaeologists very often face limited publication possibilities, where 3D data need to be adapted to the flat surface of paper or in case of online sharing, limited bandwidth or technological possibilities. The greatest challenge lies, however, in changing the academic mindset of publishing on paper in a linear way, and instead presenting large datasets and processes in a versatile, scholarly peer-reviewed digital environment.