Our Values and Behaviours

Our values and behaviours define how we approach our work and pursue our mission.

Our Vision

To enable anyone to have the skills and opportunity to tell the stories of the people and places that connect us to our world, that help us understand it and to make it a better, more inclusive place.

Our Mission

To inspire people to explore places and engage with their environment through archaeology, we will help them make new connections with each other and the places in which they live, work, learn and grow. We will also help people explore and create heritage that matters to them, championing fresh perspectives in how we recognize and value things and places, everywhere. Finally, we aim to grow the public value of archaeology by connecting commercial, academic, and community groups to demonstrate the social impact of archaeology.

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Values and Behaviors

Our values define how we work and approach championing archaeology, widening public participation and making it more relevant and accessible to a wide range of people. The CBA aspires to be:

Inclusive and Participatory

Inclusive and Participatory

  • Archaeology is for everyone, it is everywhere, and anyone can participate. Our role is to help people to discover and explore stories, connections, and new perspectives using archaeology as a tool.
  • Archaeology enables us to bring together diverse communities and create inclusive practice.

Curious and Enquiring

Curious and Enquiring

  • Archaeology is about curiosity and enquiry. It helps shape the questions we ask about ourselves and our environment - the places we live, work, learn from, and visit.
  • Archaeology is an activity that helps generate understanding, knowledge, and cultural value. It helps us think about ourselves, our wider world, and the connections in between.



  • Archaeology is best done as a cooperative process. It is a conversation between people and groups, which leads to different, richer, more dynamic, and sustainable outcomes.
  • There are many ways to participate in archaeology, and we seek to work collaboratively with partner organizations of all sizes nationwide to increase the opportunities for everyone to get involved.

Creative, Communicative, and Connective

Creative, Communicative, and Connective

  • Archaeology is about thinking creatively, recognizing, understanding, creating, and enhancing cultural value.
  • Archaeology makes an important societal contribution to education, social and economic resilience, health, and well-being, and keeping people connected.
  • Understanding, assessing, and communicating the impact and value of archaeology and participation helps us develop new methods for improving access and increasing benefits to communities caring for their environment.

Caring and Campaigning

Caring and Campaigning

  • Archaeology is central to our understanding of the natural and historic environment, and how we can care for it, campaign for it, protect, and enhance it.

Our Commitment to Equity & Inclusion

The CBA strongly believe that wider participation is essential to archaeology and it underpins our core values and approach to our work.

Anyone should be able to participate in archaeological activities and archaeology should be open to everyone. Yet, as an organisation, we recognise that we still have work to do to better understand many of the issues facing individuals participating in archaeology and to create changes that ensure archaeology is accessible to everyone. To this end, we have identified three key issues that we believe are crucial to ensuring that archaeology is a fair and open discipline and that we will therefore seek to address in our future work. These are the issues of othering, legacy, and representation.

The Issue of Othering

Othering can be defined as, “the act of treating someone as though they are not part of a group and are different in some way”. The opposite of Othering is not “saming”, it is belonging. And belonging does not insist that we are all the same. It means we recognise and celebrate our differences. Therefore, we will focus on how we can build belonging, while avoiding the possibility of Othering.

The Issue of Legacy

Our history shapes our present, and that includes the aspects which have led to inequalities and prejudices in our modern society. Many aspects of heritage values and meaning are contested. While some people draw positive associations from them, other people find them painful, traumatic and difficult. Archaeology has been used in the past to justify and support dominant and sometimes oppressive narratives around race, nationalism and imperialism. We acknowledge this and we will change how we reflect, describe and use that legacy in 
our work, to help others understand and help create new perceptions about archaeology.

The Issue of Representation

We are aware more needs to be done to ensure archaeology and heritage are more representative of wider society. We need to actively address our own actions, policies, practices and procedures, and live our CBA behaviours to ensure they are fully reflective of society today.

As part of our committment to equity, diversity, and inclusion, we have also created our online 'Equity and Diversity Hub', a constantly evolving digital resourse that aims to collate a variety of material, including articles, videos, and podcasts, relating to equity, inclusion, and diversity that offer opportunities to learn, seek advice and find support. For a more detailed overview of the CBA's approach to Equity and Diversity, you can read our latest  statement here