Methodology, data recording and data analysis

In the sixties, when I was a student, theory was not an issue in Danish archaeology, and methodology was mostly something discussed as a digression in archaeological publications. Things began to change at that time both internally in Scandinavian archaeology and as a result of influence from Anglo-Saxon and Anglo-American archaeology. It was not a part of the exams, however, and when, in addition to the odd 40.000 obligatory pages of archaeological literature for my exam, I delivered a separate list of 4.000 pages of theoretical and methodological literature, I was actually breaking new ground. This was one of the reasons why immediately after my exam I became employed at the department. I was to teach a regular course in theory and methodology.

The practice of Archaeology has always been a key issue for me. Archaeology is to a large degree a matter of things, both in terms of extracting things and their context information from the ground through excavation, and analysing things in terms of their characteristics and interrelationships. This is why I have focused on data recording and data analysis, and it is also why in several papers I have focused on the research process and the interrelationship between theory and data. My interests in data recording and data analysis led me to an interest in formal procedures and from there to the potentials of computers in archaeology, where the major part of my work with methodology lies.

List of papers on methodology