International cooperation (Rule 8)
Cooperation in research
In the domain of underwater archaeology, where the number of well-qualified professionals is still limited and many sites need to be treated and researched in an international comparison, it is advisable to draw up regional or multi-national research agendas, setting the priorities for joint-research projects. Such research agendas could for instance address the comparison of prehistoric settlement and use of the submerged continental shelves of different regions. They could address the evidence of early seafaring that provided for the population of the Earth. They could target the shipping that provided contacts between different regions, across one or different seas in a specific period of Antiquity. Or, they could focus on the development of a specific class of ships. Whether these be Pacific multihulls, whaling vessels, Maccassan praus, Arabian dhows, Chinese junks, VOC ships, Spanish galleons, American teaclippers, troopships, slaveships, or transports for pilgrims, conscript labour and immigration, one-man submarines, dreadnoughts or any other class of vessel. Drawing up such an inclusive research agenda will need to include collaboration with researchers from the States of departure, of passage, of destination and from those on whose coasts they came to grief. These research projects would be a good basis for further research and international cooperation.
Partners and fields of cooperation
The Convention builds upon international cooperation.
It stimulates cooperation at all levels between:
- States Parties,
- their competent authorities,
- their experts,
- divers and other interested parties, and
- international researchers.
Particular fields of cooperation are:
- The Convention itself and its Operational Guidelines,
- The management of sites with multiple verifiable links,
- The management of sites in international waters,
- Exchange of expertise,
- Setting up cooperative research agendas and projects.
Professional and non-governmental organizations inform cooperation at the State level and provide a platform for cooperation at other levels. They include:
- ICOMOS – ICUCH with its global membership and remit to advise on policy matters worldwide;
- ACUA-SHA with its firm basis in historical archaeology of the New World and remit to advise on policy matters worldwide;
- Universities cooperating in international training programs;
- NAS with its remit to inform and raise awareness in the diving community;
- AIMA which concentrates on the Australasian region;
- Groups organizing relevant international archaeological conferences such as IKUWA and ISBSA;
- Many other regional and topical organizations.