27th Annual Meeting of
the European Association of Archaeologists
by Felipe Criado-Boado (EAA President)
In this last year as your president, I am delighted to be inviting you to join us at Kiel for our next Annual Meeting!
A year ago, ‘Widening Horizons’ was decided on as the motto of the 27th EAA Annual Meeting, as it combined the ‘sense of place’ of Kiel and its position in Europe, with the orientation of its university and the Johanna Mestorf Academy (the host organizer of the 2021 AM) and our shared ambition to think, speak about and act widely on environmental sustainability and climate change.
One year after, ‘widening horizons’, as any good motto, has developed new and pertinent meanings. It is hard not to imagine that our unsustainable resource use of the Earth has in some way caused the current rampant world pandemic. We will need intellectual, political and cultural horizons wide open to re-establish the balance of global society with its environment.
Kiel was the place where sailor´s revolution in 1918 marked the end of the First WW, where the roots of the first parliamentary democracy in Germany lie, and where the strong ecology-focused Green movement began in the 1970s asking questions about environmental and climate change and social justice.
Kiel University is where Franz Boas was awarded his doctorate 140 years ago, where an innovative discourse between the natural and human sciences invigorates powerful intellectual thinking and approaches to environmental sustainability, and where the interplay between social and environmental studies has provided the foundation for reputed new research on archaeological landscapes and past.
In Kiel, where the vastness of the sea and openness of the landscape characterize this part of Europe, at the interface between Scandinavia and Central Europe, between the North Sea and the Baltic Seas, at this core place of the Northern European Plain and the Baltic-Pontic connections is where the EAA once again in these difficult times calls you, our members, to think about how Archaeology and Archaeological Heritage can offer new insights, how it can open our perspectives and combine innovative and traditional methods, data and interpretations to search for the future horizons of our practices and learn how we could help in the present situation.
We wish to encourage all our members to propose sessions relevant to the main themes of the Annual Meeting that include the "environmental" perspective in their scope. EAA particularly welcomes session proposals that reflect on the socio-political dimensions of archaeological knowledge and heritage, in order to facilitate the realignment of accepted practice with current and future requirements adapted to the new normal of COVID and post-COVID era.
Fully adapted to the new situation, the Kiel AM is now conceived and planned as a hybrid meeting, to facilitate on site and remote attendance at the same time. This will not only allow the participation of people in very different conditions, geographical areas and normative circumstances, but will also facilitate the transition to a pure virtual meeting again if the situation requires it. The EAA has now the advantage of the experience gained last year to ensure an improvement in the quality of the Annual Meeting organization, no matter what happens.
We look forward to another year of strong participation and contribution from our unique membership and we look forward to gathering physically and/or virtually when the time comes for another successful EAA Annual Meeting.