Brendon Wilkins

Contact: brjw1@le.ac.uk

Research Background

I joined the School at the beginning of 2016, undertaking a PhD in ‘Museum, Gallery and Heritage Practice’, kindly supported by a scholarship from the ‘College of Social Sciences, Arts and Humanities’.

My research draws on my current role as Co-founder and Projects Director of collaborative archaeology platform DigVentures, using crowdfunding, crowdsourcing and digital technology to provide opportunities for the public to participate in archaeological research. With a mission to experiment with alternative business and operational models that could help deliver better, more impactful and collaborative research, DigVentures has raised in excess of £1M in matched crowd and grant funding since 2012, working with established funders such as the Heritage Lottery Fund and the Wellcome Trust. My thesis – ‘Digging the Crowd’ – addresses the challenges and opportunities for archaeology presented by this shifting landscape: financial, political, ethical and methodological.

This research builds on my professional background as a practising field archaeologist, with over fifteen-years experience directing and managing large, complex sites in advance of major construction projects. I have held senior management roles with two of the largest archaeological organisations in the EU, and have been awarded full membership of professional institutes in Britain and Ireland, serving as an elected member of the advisory board of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists between 2012-2015.

I am a visiting lecturer at Durham University (Museum and Artefact Studies MA) and UCL (Public Archaeology MA) and am currently directing several long-running excavation projects, with wide-ranging research questions from the prehistoric to the present day. These include Bronze Age hoard sites in the North West (with Ben Roberts and Stuart Noon); Early Medieval excavations at Lindisfarne (with David Petts); and a historic Shaker settlement site in the Berkshire mountains, New York.

Publications

Book Sections

Wilkins, B. 2013. Knoweldge, value and the Celtic tiger. In Jameson, J., Aitcheson, K and Eogan, J. (eds.) Archaeologists of the world: globalizing archaeological practice. Springer.

Wilkins, B. 2012. Where the rubber hits the road: a critical analysis of archaeological decision making on highways projects in Ireland. In Harris, O., Jones, C., and Richardson, P., (eds) Fieldwork in an interpretive world: reconsidering the on‐site relationship between subject, object, theory and practice. Springer.

Wilkins, B. 2011. Excavating Death on the N6: 3500 BC to 1500 AD. In O’Sullivan, J., and Stanley, M. (eds.) Past Times, Changing Fortunes: Archaeology and the National Roads Authority Monograph Series No. 8. Dublin: National Roads Authority

Wilkins, B. 2007. Time and tide: five millennia of environmental change and human activity on the banks of the Suir. In O’Sullivan, J and Stanley, M. (eds.) New Routes to the Past: Archaeology and the National Roads Authority Monograph Series No. 4. Dublin: National Roads Authority. 61‐73.

Journal Papers

O'Sullivan, J, Tierney, J. and Wilkins, B. 2009. Two vernacular industrial sites in rural County Galway: a water powered forge or 'spade mill' at Coololla and a brick making site at Brusk. In 'Archaeology of Irish Industry Recent Excavations' IHAI, 35‐43

Wilkins, B. and Lalonde, S. 2008. An early medieval settlement/cemetery at Carrowkeel, Co. Galway. The Journal of Irish Archaeology. Vol XVII, 57‐83

Articles

Wilkins, B. 2012. Cracking castles and mega moats: adding value through social media. The Archaeologist. 86: 11-17

Wilkins, B. 2011. Past Orders: The Archaeology of Beer. Current Archaeology 256: 20-27

Wilkins, B. 2011. The Archaeology of Royal Weddings. Current Archaeology 254: 12-19

Wilkins, B. 2010. Celtic Tiger Archaeology: the view from afar. Seanda. 4: 45-47

Wilkins, B. 2010. Saints and Sinners: religion and conflict in Medieval Ireland. Current Archaeology 250: 28-35

Wilkins, B. 2010. Ireland’s Invisible People: the Celtic past meets the Celtic present. Current Archaeology 249: 28-35

Wilkins, B. 2010. From ancient waterways to modern highways: Ireland’s prehistoric beginnings. Current Archaeology 248: 36-43

Wilkins, B. 2010. When the Celtic Tiger Roared: the golden years of Irish archaeology. Current Archaeology 247: 12-19

Wilkins, B. 2010. Excavating Death in Galway: Newford, Ballykeeran and Carrowkeel. Current Archaeology 246: 36-43

Wilkins, B. 2008. Rumsfeldian Archaeology. Current Archaeology. 231: 43.

Conference Presentations

Wilkins, B. 2017. Crowdfunding and crowdsourcing archaeology: new wine old bottles, or genuine game changer for archaeology? Paper presented to SAA 2017: 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, 29th May – 3rd April.

Wilkins, B. and Westcott Wilkins, L. 2015. Digital Dig Team. European Association of Archaeologists. Glasgow

Wilkins, B. 2015. The future of archaeological research in the digital and collaborative economy. Keynote paper presented to Digital Pasts, Swansea, 12th February.

Wilkins, B. 2014. Paranoid Android? The future of archaeological research in the collaborative and digital economy. Theoretical Archaeology Group Conference. 15th – 17th December.

Wilkins, B. and Westcott Wilkins, L. 2014. The things we think and do not say: the future of our business. Chartered Institute for Archaeologists Annual Conference, Glasgow, 9th – 11th April.

Wilkins, B. 2013. Social contract archaeology: a business case for the future. Paper presented to SHA 2013: 46th Annual Conference on Historical and Underwater Archaeology, University of Leicester, 9th-12th January.

Wilkins, B., and Westcott Wilkins, L., 2012. Flag Fen Lives. Paper presented to EAA 2012: 18th Annual meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists, Helsinki, 29th August – 1st September.

Wilkins, B. 2010. Recently reported road deaths on the N6: 3500 BC to 1500 AD. Awards for the Presentation of Heritage Research. British Museum, February 2010.

Wilkins, B. 2008. The Newford Pyre: fiery debates at the trowels edge. World Archaeology Congress 6. Dublin.

Wilkins, B. 2008. Knowledge, value and the Celtic Tiger. World Archaeology Congress 6. Dublin.

Wilkins, B. 2008. The spatial segregation of children in an early medieval cemetery settlement at Carrowkeel, Co. Galway. Theoretical Archaeology Group, Columbia University, New York.

Wilkins, B. 2008. Known knowns, known unknowns and unknown unknowns: Rumsfeldian Archaeology on the Irish Road Schemes. Archaeology ’08. Current Archaeology Magazine and the Department of Portable Antiquities and Treasure. British Museum, London, UK.

Wilkins, B. 2007. Borderline archaeology: quantity and quality in the commercial sector. Theoretical Archaeology Group. York, UK.

Wilkins, B. 2007. Time and Tide. Awards for the Presentation of Heritage Research. British Association Festival of Science, York, UK

Wilkins, B. 2007. Where the rubber hits the road: a critical evaluation of archaeological decision making on highways projects in Ireland. 13th Annual EAA meeting, Zadar, Croatia.

Wilkins, B. 2006. Time and Tide: five thousand years of human activity on the banks of the river Suir. New Routes to the Past: NRA Seminar on recent work on Irish Road Schemes. Dublin.

Wilkins, B. 2005. Excavations at Newrath, Co. Kilkenny: Developing a landscape at the waters edge. 11th Annual International WARP conference, Edinburgh. Alluvial and Estuarine Session.

Wilkins, B. 2005. Deciphering social practice in an estuarine landscape: proposing an interpretive framework for excavations at Newrath, Co. Kilkenny. 11th Annual EAA meeting, Cork, Ireland

Wilkins, B. 2005. Excavations at Newrath, Co. Kilkenny as part of the N25 Waterford Bypass project. NRA/UCD Seminar: Towards Best Practice in Alluvial and Estuarine Archaeology.

Selected Excavation Reports

Wilkins, et al. 2016-2017, NW Bronze Age

Wilkins, et al. 2016-2017, Darrow, NY State

Wilkins, et al. 2016-2017, Lindisfarne

Wilkins, et al. 2013-16, Leiston Abbey

Wilkins, et al. 2013, Flag Fen Lives

Wilkins, B., Drumm, M., and Timpany, S. 2009. N 25 Waterford Bypass, Contract 3. Final Report on Archaeological Investigations at Site 34 in the townland of Newrath, Co. Kilkenny. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. and Bunce, A. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2.Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd

Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2438, a ring‐ditch with cremation deposits in the townland of Deerpark, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd

Wilkins, B. and Bunce, A. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2.Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd

Wilkins, B. 2007. Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2056, a Bronze Age burnt mound and post‐medieval field system in the townland of Clogharevaun, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2. Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2046, an enclosure ditch and cemetery in the townland of Carrowkeel, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2. Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2437, a Bronze Age cremation pyre and burnt mound in the townland of Newford, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2. Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2440, a Late Bronze Age cist and ring‐ditch in the townland of Ballykeeran, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. 2007. N6 Galway to Ballinasloe Scheme, Contract 2. Final Report on archaeological investigations at Site E2063, modern brick kilns at Brusk, Co. Galway. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

Wilkins, B. 2006. Site 35 Newrath, Neolithic hoard, structure and Iron Age metal working area. Unpublished Report for Headland Archaeology Ltd.

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