Geoarchaeological Sensitivity Modeling

Focus Area

Historic Preservation/Cultural Resources


Community & Cultural Concerns







Research Idea Scope

Sensitivity models that will allow for cost effective scoping and identification efforts that also reduce the potential for costly late discovery of archaeological sites

To date sensitivity modeling for buried sites has been accomplished on an ad-hoc project basis although some sensitivity studies have been accomplished in conjunction with the TEA funded roadside archaeological inventories.  Best practices for analyzing potential for buried sites are needed and regional sensitivity models need to be expanded beyond those already developed.  The need is especially acute in urban areas where modeling is not only needed for geomorphic settings but also for historic cuts and fills.

Urgency and Payoff

SHPO has expressed particular concern with the need to apply an appropriate level of effort on our projects to identify archaeological sites that may be buried and invisible to surface surveys.  Regional sensitivity models would allow for more reliable scoping and certainty in identifying potential for buried or obscured sites.  Late discovery of sites is especially costly and problematic.

Suggested By

Harold Hunt, California Department of Transportation

[email protected]