Applied Archaeology in the Americas: Evaluating Archaeological Solutions to the Impacts of Global Environmental Change
Jago Cooper and Lindsay Duncan
This chapter considers the role of archaeology in creating solutions for coping with the impacts of global environmental change, illustrated by cases from Latin America. Past examples of the practical application of pre-Columbian innovations and techniques are considered, and the key themes of social practice and community engagement discussed. These principles are then applied to the islands of the Caribbean where archaeology can play an important role in accessing and illuminating pre-Columbian lifeways in the region. The comparative resilience of past and present lifeways to the hazards created by extreme weather events, precipitation variability, and sea level changes are discussed, and the role of archaeology as a means of engaging the public, stimulating discussion, and informing debate is considered.
The Rehabilitation of Pre-Hispanic Agricultural Infrastructure to Support Rural Development in the Peruvian Andes: The Work of the Cusichaca Trust
Ann Kendall and David Drew
For the last 35 years an approach to rural development based on archaeological and environmental data and the accumulation of practical experience has underlain the Cusichaca Trust’s projects in different regions of highland Peru. The challenge has not just been the technical one of reviving centuries old systems of irrigation canals and agricultural terraces. Equally important has been the social goal of working alongside highland farming communities to consolidate traditional knowledge and encourage local capacities and responsibilities. This chapter presents a review of the Trust’s work and an assessment of the future possibilities for this example of ‘applied archaeology’.