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Contractor's lists
#41
Quote:quote:
The unit I work for gets a reasonable amount of work through being on certain local authority lists, though I know of one local authority who declined to put us on their list because we are not based in their county or an adjacent county, even though our current premises are 200-300m from said adjacent county (where we do a lot of work), and we are well inside the pre 1974 county boundary!

I think this thread has to some degree answered my original question - there does seem to be some degree of randomness about the manner in which different county lists are organised, who is on them, whether there are certain units that get an immediate look-in, and various historical arrangements. It's no wonder archaeology is such a mess as a profession when something this basic is so varying from region to region. It might seem like a trifling matter, and why worry about it after all this time, but I believe it is fundamental issues like this that are holding the profession back. Either the work is opened up to a truely free market and monitored appropriately, i.e. anyone can work anywhere and there are no lists, but everyone has to demonstrate their capability to do the work prior to doing it, or each region has a very strict list of people they already know can do it, who are then effectively recommended. Would that work though I wonder? The former would be much harder for curators to deal with and would really rely on something like an RAO scheme and therefore need the IfA's involvement. It's the sort of thing I would like to see the IfA investigating.
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#42
Or we could have a scheme where units are assessed by an outside body who periodically monitors their work and investigates complaints - by god we already do. Why not just use the RAO scheme as a good number of curators do around the country already.
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#43
Quote:quote:Originally posted by historic building

Or we could have a scheme where units are assessed by an outside body who periodically monitors their work and investigates complaints - by god we already do. Why not just use the RAO scheme as a good number of curators do around the country already.

Indeed we do, but it would appear that curators use the RAO status in quite a variety of ways - do some use it to 'recommend' archaeologist? Others might only subtly hint that RAOs are 'the best', one list I know of only highlights those organisations that are RAOs (by which I literally mean highlights, as in they are shown in a different colour on the list). Kind of makes the status of RAO a bit variable across the country, and therefore ultimately a bit meaningless. Can't curators agree on this? Or do they all actually use the same system while it appears different? Clearly without going round and asking them all I can tell.
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