Activist/ Researcher/ Insider/ Outsider: A conversation about fields of work

Vanicka Arora (India, Australia, Nepal), Iida Käyhkö (Finland,UK, Kurdistan), Sarah De Nardi (Italy, Australia, Pakistan)

What if heritage isn’t so much about things, but more about the things we say and do to each other?

What roles do we play in (mis)translating, (mis)representing and (mis)communicating heritage and how might we negotiate these roles?

Who shapes our research agendas and what roles do language play in framing newer understandings of heritage?

What perspectives does working with women as a woman bring to our work? 

An Ongoing Conversation

We attempt to connect multiple threads of ongoing conversations on decolonising heritage, its interpretations and how heritage practices are translated and transformed in different contexts. Referring to our own experiences as activists, researchers, insiders, and outsiders to the ‘field of study’, we put forth a conversation that is not quite linear — because research is rarely linear. We look back to our past experiences in Pakistan, Nepal, UK, Australia, Italy, Finland and Kurdistan, interrogating our own position within our chosen sites of intervention.

We use a virtual pin-board of ideas (a Padlet), images and sometimes unfinished arguments, hoping to draw and redraw new connections within and beyond our research in an ever-widening quest for multiplicity of voice. A conversation across time zones and field sites, this is a dialogue through images, sounds and words. We welcome your thoughts and ‘pins’ and invite you to start discovering new connections of your own!

Join the Conversation!

Add your own stories, thoughts and responses to our queries in any of these formats-

On Padlet

Made with Padlet

Add a story by simply clicking on the + button on the padlet. You can add text, images, even a video if you like! You can also add comments to our pins on the padlet and respond to our themes and discussion.

Your posts will be updated and shared via festivalCHAT. Feel free to circulate this as far and wide as you like.

You can post without logging in or signing up with the Padlet- or create your free account!

We will be moderating the Padlet through the festival and it will remain live for a month afterwards.

On Twitter

We will be posting content from the Padlet with the Twitter hashtags #festivalCHAT2020 #HeritageConversations

You can join in the conversation by simply replying to Tweets with your own thoughts and provocations.

Follow us on @VanickaA, @denardi77 and @iidaest

On You Tube

We had an impromptu chat about the Padlet which we have recorded where we go into depth about our observations and experiences and how they inform and transform us. Feel free to leave comments and we will get back to you!


You can also email us with further questions or thoughts:,,


These activities are publicly accessible and hosted online for the duration of festivalCHAT and for up to three months after.

You are free to delete your content at any time or alter your content.

You are free to post anonymously or use your name and affiliation, however these will be publicly displayed along with your content

Please read Padlet policies here

All content you share will be stored on Padlet’s and will be accessible to anyone with the supplied link.

Please only post content that you have the rights to use or share – please do not post copyrighted material.


pubCHAT Europe + Africa

Real ale handpumps. Source Wikipedia.

Rachael Kiddey and Hilary Orange are hosting PubCHAT on 20:00 BST (21:00 SAST) Friday 23 October

Hilary Orange and Emma Dwyer are hosting PubCHAT on 19:00 GMT (21:00 SAST) Friday 30 October

Join these social events and link up with people in Europe and Africa.

Come CHAT with us! PubCHATs are designed to be an informal way to meet other contemporary and historical archaeologists and to talk about life, research, and interests! There is no formal programme, so just show up with your favorite evening beverage or meal and be prepared to socialise. These PubCHATs are timed to be accessible for those located in Europe and Africa, but everybody is welcome! This is part of a series of three events being held in association with the Festival in different timezones (including the Americas and Asia/Oceania).

We will send out the Zoom link via the CHAT JiscMail ( a few days before the event. You can sign up to join this mailing list HERE by clicking the ‘subscribe’ button.

Note: There is no official language for pubCHATs and while it is likely that many of those who come along speak English, we welcome speakers of all languages.

Equality? Does it exist in Finnish archaeology?

Sanna Lipkin, Tiina Äikäs & Tuija Kirkinen (Finland)

Blue Bird Sessions on Thursday 29 October 15:30pm EET (13:30 GMT) @SannaLipkin

Note: this event will take place on Twitter

The current Government of Finland has become famous for a high number of young female ministers and its strategic theme of “Fair, equal and inclusive Finland”, which was based on the values of intersectional feminism. Finland is a forerunner in non-discrimination and gender equality at the work life. However, even the government’s program admits that a lot remains to be improved. In 2010, we raised these issues into discussion among the archaeologists with hopes that gender equality would improve. Now, ten years later, we wanted to see if anything has changed. Almost 80 Finnish archaeologists answered our questionnaire about equality, sexual harassment and discrimination within the national field. Even though some archaeologists see that things have changed, it seems that ten years is a short period for clear improvements in equality issues. For instance, within universities young female archaeologists have been awarded internationally evaluated high profile funding, but this has not led to permanent appointments. Instead, a vast majority of the university posts are still held by men. The answers provide that especially young Finnish archaeologists are well aware of the situation, are highly conscious of different aspects of equality and work actively for improvements. We will discuss the questionnaire results and future directions in an interactive Twitter thread.