Joint Explorations of the Sunken Past: Examples of Maritime Archaeological Collaboration Between Industry and Academia in the Baltic

  • Joakim HolmlundEmail author
  • Björn Nilsson
  • Johan Rönnby
Part of the Coastal Research Library book series (COASTALRL, volume 20)


This chapter examines the benefits and constraints of collaboration between an archaeological research unit and a commercial company, using as examples joint research conducted by MARIS (Maritime Archaeological Research Institute at Södertörn University) and the Swedish commercial marine survey company MMT. The examples presented here included the detailed reconstruction by remote sensing of deeply submerged shipwrecks and the mapping and discovery of submerged archaeological landscapes and associated artefacts such as fish traps, which can then be examined more closely by archaeological divers. The benefits to archaeologists of collaborating with well-equipped commercial companies are obvious, but the benefits are mutual. The demands of archaeological research can generate new technological solutions that have commercial application, as well as producing results with wider educational and social benefits. Provided that archaeological investigations are embedded in the normal commercial operations of the company, such collaboration can be cost-effective for both parties, and is further enhanced by collaboration with film companies, which generates wider public interest and publicity for all concerned.


Shipwrecks Submerged landscapes Fish traps ROV Multibeam Haväng Mesolithic Parametric sub bottom sonar 



Many dedicated friends and colleagues have been (and continue to be) involved in the projects described above, and we want to thank them all. We are very pleased that they share our interest in ‘solving mysteries’. We especially wish to thank three people who have been instrumental in making this unique collaboration between MARIS and MMT possible: Malcolm Dixelius, Carl Douglas and Ola Oskarsson. Besides the institutions and companies already mentioned in the text, we also acknowledge support from The Knowledge Foundation, The Foundation for Baltic and East European Studies, National Geographic and Stiftelsen Olle Engkvist Byggmästare.


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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joakim Holmlund
    • 1
    Email author
  • Björn Nilsson
    • 2
  • Johan Rönnby
    • 2
  1. 1.MMTVästra FrölundaSweden
  2. 2.MARIS (Maritime Archaeological Research Institute)Södertörn UniversityHuddingeSweden

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