The 16th Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists took place in The Hague, Netherlands, 1-5 September 2010.
The 16th EAA Annual Meeting was held in The Hague, Netherlands, 1 – 5 September 2010. The meeting was organized by the Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University, the Department of Archaeology of the Municipality of The Hague and the Cultural Heritage Agency (Ministry of Education, Culture and Science), with financial support from the Minister of Culture. Congrex Holland ensured excellent logistics. The venue - the building of the Royal Conservatoire of the Leiden University Campus The Hague - provided all the facilities needed to sustain a conference of this size with regard to conference rooms, display areas, catering facilities and equipment, and in addition a special atmosphere.
The Steering Committee, chaired by Willem Willems, was supported by the National Advisory board. The Scientific Committee evaluated all session proposals and constructed a full and well-balanced programme. The smooth running of the conference was possible thanks to the student volunteers.
The conference was inaugurated officially on Wednesday 1 September at the Opening Ceremony held in the Arnold Schönbergzaal of the Royal Conservatoire. Approximately 610 attendees to the Opening Ceremony were welcomed at the meeting by Willem Willems, Chair of the Steering committee, P. F. van der Heijden, the Rector Magnificus and President of Leiden University, Friedrich Lüth, the EAA President, and Cees van ‘t Veen, director of the Cultural Heritage Agency in the absence of a Minister of Culture due to Cabinet formation. The first opening lecture “The Museum as an Agent in the Conservation or Destruction of the Archaeological Heritage?” by Colin Renfrew was followed by a musical intermezzo by students of the Royal Conservatoire and the second opening lecture “The Comeback Species: recent development in Neanderthal studies” by Wil Roebroeks. Willem Willems, chair of the EAA Heritage Prize Committee, awarded the prize for 2010 to David Breeze in recognition of his contributions to international cooperation in heritage conservation and archaeological heritage management. J. H. F. Bloemers presented to the EAA President the European book on Historical Landscape. An Opening Reception followed in The Hague Town Hall.
Major social events during the lecture days (Thursday to Saturday) included the Annual Party on De Pier at Scheveningen on the Thursday, and the Gala Dinner at the National Museum of Antiquities in Leiden on the Saturday. Approximately 118 EAA members gathered at the Annual Business Meeting on the Friday afternoon to discuss the current situation of the Association. Pre- and post-conference excursions were organized to adjacent places of interest.
Academic sessions took place from Thursday morning (2 September) to Saturday afternoon (4 September). Altogether 536 papers (as compared to 474 in Riva last year) were collected and presented in 71 sessions (51 in Riva), along with 64 posters. Papers were timetabled for 20 minute speeches; poster session took place on Friday 3 September from 11 - 12.30, but posters were displayed in the foyer during the whole congress. Sessions and round tables were divided into three thematic areas: Archaeological Heritage Resource Management (11 sessions), Interpreting the Archaeological Record (45 sessions), and Perspectives on Archaeology in the Modern World (15 sessions). Chronologically, the contributions ranged from early Paleolithic to the modernity and included current matters related with archaeology in Europe. The 1026 registered participants to the conference came from more than fifty different countries.