Planning for Ontario’s Archaeological Past: Accomplishments and Continuing Challenges

Journal of American Archaeology No. 28 (2010)
Ronald F. Williamson

Over the past 35 years, the practice of archaeology in the province of Ontario, Canada has witnessed a number of very important and dramatic changes that have resulted in a vigorous archaeological consulting industry as a response to societal concerns for the conservation of heritage values and environmental protection. Pre-development archaeological assessments are required as part of the Ontario Planning Act and the Ontario Environmental Assessment Act. More recently, in an effort to provide a uniform approach to archaeological consulting fieldwork and reporting, new Standards and Guidelines were developed and implemented along with a Technical Bulletin which addresses the relationship between archaeological consulting and First Nations communities. Along with the legislative framework and best practices developed by the profession, a critical element that is essential to the good health and valued contributions of the archaeological consulting industry is an ethical position that takes into consideration the interests of all concerned parties: the proponents, the general public, the descendent communities and the archaeological profession.

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