Introduction

Archaeological practice in the Republic of Ireland is delivered through a commercialised system, where different private companies carry out fieldwork and other research on behalf of public and private funders. There was a great boom in the amount of archaeological work carried out in the Republic of Ireland in the early years of the 21st century, which was largely in support of the construction of many new roads. This period of road building came to an end at the same time that changing global economic conditions also led to a significant downturn in other construction-led archaeological work and thus to a considerable reduction in the number of archaeologists working in the Republic of Ireland.