Chile – Themes and Abstract Submission

Spanish version

Abstract submission for the 2019 ICAHM Annual Meeting has now closed. The corresponding author of each abstract will be notified of acceptance/rejection before 31 May.

The language of this conference is English and Spanish. All abstracts must be submitted and presented in clear English or Spanish with accurate grammar and spelling of a quality suitable for publication.

To ensure all authors will present at our meeting, we respectfully request that you register and pay conference fees prior to 1 July, 2019. Those not registered will be removed from our conference program to allow others the opportunity to present.

If you have any queries regarding your submission, please contact:

Although membership in ICAHM is not required to present an abstract in this conference, we strongly encourage participants to join ICAHM.


The 2019 ICAHM Annual Meeting in Arica, Chile will provide a meeting ground for preservationists and local communities and indigenous groups in South America.  The conference themes elicit contributions about legal frameworks, intellectual and traditional ecological knowledge (TEK) property rights, bioethics, aboriginal and community archaeology, and dialogue on controlling and mitigating the impacts of plundering and illegal trade.

Theme 1: Indigenous Archaeologies in Latin America: Archaeologists, Archaeology and Indigenous Peoples
Theme 2: The role of States, communities and experts in the conservation and management of the cultural and archaeological heritage of the Andean peoples of northern Chile
Theme 3 Processes of plundering and restitution of archaeological and anthropological collections
Theme 4: Public Archaeology and Aboriginal Communities
Theme 5: Competing Values: Bioethics in Practice within Archaeological and Anthropological Research

Theme 1: Indigenous Archaeologies in Latin America: Archaeologists, Archaeology and Indigenous Peoples

Pre-Colombian sites in Chile and the Andean countries like the the Qhapaqñan Route and the mummies of Chinchorro Culture are inscribed or proposed for listing on the World Heritage List. However, there are  archaeological sites from the Indian-Spanish period and the colonial times that are being investigated as well. This important session aims to expose the processes to oversee and manage important archeological sites of Pre-Colonial times. This session will show in detail how the archeologists have been treating the locals, the Indigenous people and other important actors among the landscapes of the Desert Coast from the North and the Temperate Southern Coast, the Altiplano, the High Andes and the settlements through the Atacama-Chilean desert. We will promote the participation of Indigenous heritage practitioners so as to sustain a dialogue regarding the recognition and promotion of Indigenous places as World Heritage nominations to the List, including consideration of Indigenous community goals if this process toward inscription can move forward.

Chair: Ulises Cárdenas Hidalgo

Theme 2: Effective Management of Archaeological Heritage of the North Chilean Andean culture(s)

With the returning to democracy, Chile passed new regulations and specific laws regarding the protection of the Original Peoples (Pueblos Originarios) who were postponed by the dictatorial regime. Important are Indian Law 19,253, several modifications to Law 17,288 of National Monuments, and the signing of the 169 Accord from the ONU International Organization of Labor. Papers dealing with these subject matters  are invited for this conference theme.  This session would also be open to submissions that deal with legislation.

Chair: Mario Rivera

Theme 3 Processes of plundering and restitution of archaeological and anthropological collections

Andean and Pacific coastal South America has a long sequence of prehistoric settlements well known because of their excellent preservation. However, since the early Spanish conquest and subsequent colonial times, preservation of cultural heritage has been threatened by looting and plundering. Europe and the US have the main archaeological collections that originated in the region. The analysis regarding policies of restitution globally of those collections to contemporary Aboriginal people living in heritage landscapes will be discussed in terms of recent international policies. Many contemporary case studies of heritage destruction have been dealt with through remote sensing, internet investigations, and
international trafficking interdictions. This session would be open to the full gamut of
plundering, its consequences, and mitigation and restitution measures

Chair: John Peterson

Theme 4: Public Archaeology and First Peoples (Indigenous) Communities

Public archaeology is the discipline that disseminates archaeological knowledge and its associated praxis to the general public and that collaborates with aboriginal communities in the design and execution of archaeological projects concerning their ancestors and living descendants. We are interested in soliciting papers that develop archaeological praxis for recognizing and incorporating the cultural values of First Peoples. This is a contemporary theme in archaeology that encourages community archaeology and engagement with local communities and descendant groups. We would hope to hear papers representing a wide variety of First Peoples from across the world.

Chair: Matthew Whincop and Nelly Robles Garcia

Theme 5: Competing Values: Bioethics in Practice within Archaeological and Anthropological Research

Today many investment and development projects (energy, mining, forestry and investment projects) constitute a real threat to cultural property that are part of cultural heritage. In the Chilean case, in order to protect the archaeological heritage sites from the development model, the government, in a movement of sympathy, has issued new laws (Law 19,300, 20,417) creating the new Ministry of the Environment and the associated public offices. Despite these actions, the actual practice of public archeology in Chile and the world tends to follow private industry, infringing the real purpose of the legal system. Papers on this subject will contribute to the relevance of corporate transnational guidelines and policies to the development process especially in countries with no or minimal heritage legislation. We invite the presentation of case studies in other places that contribute to this topic.

Chair: Francisca Fernandez