Linnaeus University’s graduate school Grasca has been extended. The Knowledge Foundation has granted Grasca SEK 10.8 million in funding until 2023. In 2018, four new doctoral students will be recruited to work with development of Swedish contract archaeology in collaboration with the industry.
"Grasca is a unique and innovative graduate school that inspires and promotes academic curiosity. Grasca is an example of how close collaboration with and within the academy can create a larger value and utility for people, society and companies", says Peter Aronsson, vice-chancellor at Linnaeus University.
The graduate school Grasca started its activities in 2015.
"We want to change the archaeology contract market by developing new market areas and establish archaeology that can benefit society better – and this takes time! The funding that we have now been granted provides us with this time and opportunity", explains Cornelius Holtorf, professor of archaeology at Linnaeus University and research manager for the graduate school.
More doctoral students also mean that Grasca will get the opportunity to collaborate with more companies within contract archaeology. Collaboration with companies is the basic idea for Grasca, and also what has made the graduate school pioneering within archaeology.
"We create knowledge through collaboration which is beneficial for us as well as for those we collaborate with. We want the companies to feel that they are creating something they did not have before", says Anders Högberg, professor of archaeology at Linnaeus University and one of the initiators of Grasca.
Can strengthen the research environment
The new doctoral students will contribute to the development of the archaeological research environment at Linnaeus University – and the new doctoral students may also encourage others to follow in their footsteps, Högberg continues.
"The more doctoral students that are active and present at the department, the more we can inspire our students at first- and second-cycle level to continue with third-cycle studies. In the long term, this can strengthen our research further", Högberg concludes.
In their motivation, the Knowledge foundation, among other things, point out that the graduate school's work is already starting to pay off. The participating companies have increased their scientific competence and developed a more academic thinking. The companies have also started working together to a larger extent. A number of international archaeologists have come to know Grasca as a phenomenon with potential to develop new areas of business for contract archaeology.
At present, the participating actors in Grasca are Bohusläns Museum, Kalmar läns museum/Museiarkeologi Sydost, and Västvarvet Studio Västsvensk Konservering.