Anthropology gets muddy at excavation workshop

11 October 2016
Anthropology gets muddy at excavation workshop

Last month Anthropology hosted a weekend workshop on a best practice approach to the excavation of human remains as part of the Australian and New Zealand Forensic Science Society 23rd International Symposium on the Forensic Sciences.

The workshop brought together excavation expertise from our own bioarchaeologists and archaeologists Judith Littleton, Beatrice Hudson, Rebecca Phillipps and Josh Emmitt, as well as Angela Clark from the University of Otago, Andrea Scott from the NZ Police and Rian Morgan-Smith from the ESR Forensic Service Centre.

Ashleigh Fox organised the workshop, and explains that she wanted to provide an opportunity for the forensic science community to discuss and practice a range of methods used for locating and recording surface and subsurface remains.

19 participants from across Australia, Malaysia and New Zealand attended, including police officers, forensic scientists, forensic pathologists and forensic odontologists. The diversity of the group led to lively debates, and participants appreciated the opportunity to discuss points with many people from different backgrounds.

Despite the inclement weather, everyone got stuck in, getting wet and muddy while excavating mock scenarios at our Simulated Excavation Site (ASETS).

Participants valued the hands-on experience provided in the workshop, and said that they picked up great new ideas from the mix of professionals that took part.

The Anthropology team are encouraged by the positive feedback they received from the participants in the workshop, and look forward to running similar events in the future.

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