Past Environments

The Past Enviroments is a small but diverse group of researchers, active in research themes such as cave archaeology, remote sensing, and coastal monitoring. The Past Enviroments group builds upon and consolidates the individual research activities of Principal Investigators, academic researchers, post-doctoral researchers, and post-graduates.

Dr Fiona Beglane

Principal Investigator

Dr Fiona Beglane is a lecturer at the Institute of Technology, Sligo (Ireland) specialising in zooarchaeology, the analysis of archaeological faunal remains. Her research focuses mainly on medieval archaeology, the archaeology of hunting, and community archaeology. She has interests in interdisciplinary approaches to medieval landscapes, integrating scientific and social/cultural interpretations of archaeology and examining the interaction between humans and animals. Dr Beglane has over 40 peer-reviewed papers and book chapters, a peer-reviewed book, an edited peer-reviewed book and numerous popular publications to her name. She is licence eligible and a full Member of the Institute of Archaeologists of Ireland.

Current Research Projects:

The Disert Heritage Project https://disertheritage.com/

Food, Culture and Identity in Ireland, 1550-1650 https://foodcult.eu/


Sam Moore

Principal Investigator

Sam Moore is an archaeologist with a keen interest in prehistory in general and Irish passage tombs specifically. He lectures in archaeology at the Institute of Technology, Sligo and is completing a PhD at NUI Galway on the Carrowkeel/Keshcorran passage tomb complex in Co. Sligo. Sam has written or contributed to a considerable number Journals of local history articles, books and guides. His main interest lies in past landscapes and human interaction with them; and the biography or ‘life-history’ of monuments.

Current research projects:

The Carrowkeel/Keshcorran passage tomb complex, Co. Sligo: place, time and meaning

Dr Marion Dowd

Principal Investigator

Dr Marion Dowd is an internationally recognised expert in Irish cave archaeology. She has published five books, including the multi award winning ‘The Archaeology of Caves in Ireland’. She has been a licensed archaeologist since 2001, and has excavated numerous cave sites throughout Ireland. She has a strong interest in folklore and has published on the interaction between foklore and archaeology.

Current Research Projects:

Glencurran Cave excavations: publication of five seasons of excavation of this multi-period archaeological site in the Burren

Stefanie White

Research Student

Stefanie White is a conservator with specialism in material science and the conservation of archaeology. Stefanie has international experience working in material conservation and heritage management. Stefanie has lectured in the conservation of organic and inorganic materials as well as in collections management for ‘Heritage without Borders’, UCL. In association with IT Sligo and Letterkenny IT, Stefanie is currently researching ‘the protection and promotion of archaeological sites on the Wild Atlantic Way: best practice for sustainable tourism’.

Darren Garland

PHD Student

My PhD is primarily focused on Lough Arrow, a designated SAC under the Habitats Directive due to the presence of a representative example of the Annex I habitat “Hard oligo-mesotrophic waters with benthic vegetation of Chara spp.”.

The current conservation condition of this Annex I habitat is impaired and deemed by the most recent conservation condition assessment to have an “Unfavourable Poor” classification. This classification is due to a number of pressures impacting the habitat at a national scale, most notably, the impacts from pollution and invasive species which are compromising both habitat quality and availability.

During my PhD, novel in situ conservation measures will be undertaken to potentially improve the conservation condition of the habitat and temporal changes in relation to habitat quality will be monitored.

Current research projects:

Collaborative Actions for the Natura Network (CANN)