In 1966, scholars from various universities and scientific institutions of Turkey joined together under the leadership of the former president of Middle East Technical University, Mr. Kemal Kurdaş to establish a research institute to undertake the Keban Project. It was the co-operative effort towards salvaging the historical monuments and sites of a region that had to be flooded through the construction of Keban dam in 1970s. After 1975, the project extended the study area to include the Lower Euphrates Region. While the archaeological sites within METU campus was being excavated, the University Museum was established for the dissemination of information revealed by excavations and the display of artefacts for public.
This institute, re-structured in 1995 as a Centre of Research and Assessment of Historical Environment (TAÇDAM) continued its original mission: to motivate undertakings of salvage archaeology and documentation of historical environment by means of the most advanced methods and techniques for those areas under risk. Now, among advanced institutions of archaeology in Turkey, TAÇDAM stands as one of the leading research units concerning historical environmental matters with an interdisciplinary vision. Directed on research matters by a managing committee formed of representatives from several academic units at Middle East Technical University -archaeometry, geology, restoration of historic monuments, city and regional planning- TAÇDAM serves as an interdisciplinary research center to survey and excavate archaeological sites in threatened areas of Turkey, to publish their results.
Research concerns of TAÇDAM
- Identification and documentation of historical environment,
- Field studies for salvage archaeology with non-destructive methods,
- G.I.S. application for cultural heritage management,
- Preservation and presentation of cultural heritage on site,
- Project appraisal for integrated conservation issues in historic areas of town planning,
- Contribution and input of archaeological advice to the planning process; archaeological impact studies for urban infrastructure projects, land reclamation, urban development projects.
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