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Chartered Archaeologists are to be a reality
Sadly Dino, that IS the future....
Dinosaur Wrote:As long as it doesn't end up with 3 or 4 mega-ROs running everything and everyone else unable to tender for work...
and would that be so bad? no more complaints about undercutting so wages have to remain low, no more traipsing around the islands after stupidly short contracts, just a few big employers running their part of the country - happy days - surely!
If they can get you asking the wrong questions, they don't have to worry about answers
Agreed P P thoughts too....
Likewise, one big unit would solve all our problems, or maybe just the old county units only working within their own counties? staff would have a good working knowledge of their local archaeology, no more undercutting, loss leaders and maybe more emphasis on doing right by the archaeology rather than the profit margin! Heaven...
Wages may rise to the level of a profession rather than a trade and a reformed IFA would actually be a good thing.
Sounds a bit like socialism though...
Steve H Wrote:....staff would have a good working knowledge of their local archaeology...

...which patently won't happen when the 4 or 5 left standing start to have to venture off their home turf... bet BAJR wouldn't be so enthusiastic if he got transferred to an office in Cornwall to make full use of his local knowledge, for instance... archaeology outside southern England will just slide back into the dark ages due to lack of big-money big money projects to attract the attention of the big boys, little resource will be 'wasted' on small budget, low profile stuff 'oop norf' an inconvenient drive past Watford Gap, whereas at present standards elsewhere are to at least some extent propped up by local knowledge and enthusiasm (like BAJR's). Steve H, like the county units idea, and maybe a non-profit making Central Unit to pick up the bits that fall through the cracks...hey, didn't we once have something like that before people started trying to get rich from archaeology?
P Prentice Wrote:and would that be so bad? no more complaints about undercutting so wages have to remain low, no more traipsing around the islands after stupidly short contracts, just a few big employers running their part of the country - happy days - surely!

wrong wrong wrong, so wrong...

lets flip it - decreasing chances of public accountability,still huge potential (nay commercial necessity) to put profits above archaeology, huge potential for stitch-ups and corruption as small numbers of powerful executives hob-nob with MPs, L.Gov + N.Gov, Chambers of Commerce and 'Business Leaders' etc. etc...

More-over, the privatisation model HAS CLEARLY FAILED THE PEOPLE OF THIS COUNTRY!!!

Lets just look at Power and Energy shall we ?
Or the Railways ?
Or the Post-Office sell off? on and so on

never mind the halfy-halfy agencies....dare i mention the EA ? the benefits farce(S) ? G4S ?

Only a die hard ThatcherBlair-ite could fail to see just how crap all this has actually turned out.

if a market model is to be used to deal with our heritage, then there must be healthy competition (see above for what happens when there isn't)....

(just what is archaeology worth anyway £?£)
Regardless of all that;
It is abundantly clear that local communities are best served by well funded LOCAL Councils,
and even,
that much time&effort could be saved if county/borough councils still had excavation services...e.g. for a developer, a large amount of money might be saved from being pilfered by flocks of completely superfluous consultants, and unnecessary multi- tierd corporate management pyramids -

-of course many pyramid dwellers want to keep their pyramids, and, as potential members of a 'corporate -class' , many developers probably are just fine with that too.

The Reality is that just as many overpaid and under-productive people accumulate in the private/corporate sector as ever were present in local/civil services.
However, in UK.PLc today, corruption and profiteering seems even worse.!

So please, could we have a proper think about whether commercial 'uber-units' in today’s world are such a good idea ? And could be please - at least - pay some respect for 'public service' archaeologists, without whom there would never have been a 'Heritage Sector' to profit from.
Speaking as a completelty superflous consultant who has never brought any benefit to either clients or field archaeologists and merely pilfered large sums off the top of development projects, I have to say that I completely agree with GK's final comment about public service archaeologists.

Whilst I have to admit to being fairly ambivalent about the idea of Chartered or non-Chartered archaeologists and also about uber-units vs. local expertise, I do think that the pressure on the provision of development control archaeologists represents the greatest threat to standards of archaeology (ceertainly in England). Whilst I have never worked in the public sector, I have regular contact with a great many development control archaeologists and much respect for most of them. I remember saying previosuly on this forum that the best thing for standards of archaeology in England would be to make these posts statutory and increase the pay by at least 100% across the board (yes -even for the slightly duff ones). If I was in charge of archaeology in this country that would be my first move (although as a consultant I would need to cream at least 10% off the pay increase) - perhaps this is something that Chartered Archaeologists could campaign for.

Perhaps the answer then is for all Archaeologists in the UK to become superfluous Consultants pilfering vast quantities of money while doing nothing. Problem sorted. :p
I like the sound of a 100% pay rise :face-approve: However, realistically, statutory HER's and LA advisory services are the way forward. It's the only way to secure both the provision of archaeological work within the planning process, and the maintenance of better standards. Rescue have been campaigning for this for years - and quite rightly so. Let's hope this is the result of the Ed Vaizey review into LA archaeology that is happening at the moment.
Don'y hold your breath....we have been here many,many times before. Statutory HER's and staff has a place..but will it ever make it there in today's cash strapped environment? Dream on!

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