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Communicating Archaeology: From Trends to Policy. Public Perceptions and Experience in the Changing Media Environment

Bonacchi, C; (2012) Communicating Archaeology: From Trends to Policy. Public Perceptions and Experience in the Changing Media Environment. Doctoral thesis, UCL (University College London).

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Abstract

This thesis advances existing literature and knowledge about public engagement in archaeology. Based on extensive, quantitative and qualitative audience research, it examines how the UK public perceive and experience archaeology, and suggests policy ‘strategies’ through which archaeological communication can be improved. First a theoretical framework of archaeological communication is developed; this allows the comparative examination of the ways in which experiences of archaeology are differently configured, depending on the contexts of communication (personal, social and physical), content and discourse. The framework has been used to conduct three large-scale surveys (samples of 500 people were used): a survey of visitors to the Medieval Gallery of the Museum of London (London, UK), one of Facebook fans of the TV series 'Time Team', and a survey of visitors to the exhibition 'From Petra to Shawbak. Archaeology of a Frontier' (Florence, Italy). From such programme, a better understanding is gained of the composition of the public for archaeology, in the UK (and comparatively in Italy), of the ways in which they participate, and of the real and perceived benefits that derive from public engagement in archaeology. Finally, templates of public engagement designed for university departments, museum institutions and Public Service Broadcasting are proposed, and prospects of future research outlined.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: Communicating Archaeology: From Trends to Policy. Public Perceptions and Experience in the Changing Media Environment
Publisher version: http://www.ubiquitypress.com/
Language: English
UCL classification: UCL > School of Arts and Social Sciences > Faculty of Social and Historical Sciences > Institute of Archaeology
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1353700
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