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From archaeology and conservation to heritage management at ancient Sagalassos (Turkey)

Book - Dissertation

From archaeology and conservation to heritage management at ancient Sagalassos (Turkey) During the last two decades, conservation has evolved beyond the physical preservation of cultural assets. Today it is widely accepted that the long-term conservation of cultural resources requires sustainable management practices, bringing more than ever the disciplines of archaeology and conservation together. The decades-long mariage forcé between these two disciplines stands at the tipping point of a transformation today as they merge to function together within the wider scope of heritage management studied as a natural-cultural landscape. The Sagalassos Archaeological Research Project is a large-scale undertaking involving urban excavation and territorial survey in Southwest Turkey, exposing the ancient city of Sagalassos over the last 23 years. The proposed research will aim to scrutinize the above-mentioned transformation by taking Sagalassos Project as a case study. The general objective of this PhD thesis is to reconstruct the interdisciplinary research and development trajectory of the Sagalassos archaeological research project, starting from a traditional excavation and conservation practice at the archaeological site, to end up with an integrated spatial development approach valorising cultural and natural heritage of the Ağlasun micro-region. The PhD consists of four articles preceded by a methodological introduction explaining the built-up of the interdisciplinary trajectory and followed by a conclusion indicating future research avenues for integrated sustainable development of nature-culture heritage sites. The first paper explains the evolving anastylosis methodology, principles and techniques and examines the anastylosis project of the Arch of Claudius in Sagalassos. The project witnesses the ameliorated anastylosis approach as well as integrated documentation and conservation techniques employed at Sagalassos and allows for discussion on the effect of anastylosis at archaeological sites, their role in visibility and management of the heritage site. Based on the Sagalassos experience, the second paper offers a critical view towards the position of the conservation practice within the interdisciplinary collaboration structure of large-scale archaeological projects at archaeological sites in function of establishing a long-term management strategy for the heritage at hand. The third paper is a review of the available techniques and methods for the core issue of documentation at a site for which rapidly developing technology offers a variety of new tools and methods. It examines the use of conventional and new techniques simultaneously and evaluates the efficiency of the results in comparison to the current and future purposes of documentation. It also discusses the value of documentation as a management tool for heritage sites. The fourth paper presents the community archaeology and local development projects conducted at Ağlasun/Sagalassos, discussing the response of different disciplines to the changing concepts and collaboration perspectives in the fields of archaeology, conservation and heritage.
Number of pages: 262
Publication year:2018