Careers in Archaeology

In my role I often work with students interested in working with the Historic Environment and Cultural Heritage sector. This is a wide-ranging sector that can be hard to define, though Creative and Cultural Skills made good progress on this in their 2013 Skills Survey. The following short post is aimed at those currently studying or thinking about a career in Archaeology.

Recent labour market analysis* of the profession highlights increased staffing and business confidence. Although the recession from 2008 had an adverse impact on jobs and growth, there is now an optimism about opportunities and the need to fill skills-gaps.

Historic England have recently published a very interested report reinforcing this latter point. It reveals, with regards to the market in England that ‘there is a projected shortage of between 25 and 64% in the available workforce needed to service the archaeological needs of proposed projects’. There are over 40 major infrastructure projects planned up until after 2030 and this, it is argued, brings a need to expand the current total of 3000 commercial archaeologists required to undertake the mandatory exploratory excavations prior to the infrastructure and development projects.

For anyone interested in the heritage sector, both the report and the Skills Survey are well worth a read.

*Sources include:

Aitchison and Rocks‐Macqueen (2013) Archaeology LMI – Landward Research

Landward Research (2014) Heritage Market Survey

Rocks-MacQueen (2015) Jobs in British Archaeology 2014-15

 

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