Why a CfAS? - Coalition for Archaeological Synthesis

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Why a Coalition for Archaeological Synthesis?

Archaeologists have diligently discovered, documented, analyzed, and curated our collective past. However, this rich store of data has untapped potential beyond documenting the histories of numerous human societies. Archaeological data can be used to expand scientific understandings of human social dynamics, redress injustices of the past, empower descendant communities, and aid the formulation of solutions to contemporary problems.

Collaborative synthetic research, as practiced in ecology and many other sciences, has been a powerful driver for advancing interdisciplinary science. For collaborative synthetic research to be accepted throughout archaeology and for its results to impact society at large, the practice must become routine and institutionalized. The Coalition for Archaeological Synthesis (CfAS) does this using an established, working group framework to tap the knowledge and creativity of archaeologists and archaeological organizations worldwide.

Additional background on the rationale behind and the vision of the Coalition for Archaeological Synthesis is provided in a brief brochure and two articles, Fostering Synthesis in Archaeology to Advance Science and Benefit Society (Altschul et al., 2017) and Fostering Collaborative Synthetic Research in Archaeology (Altschul et al., 2018).

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