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… and the winner in Archaeology RAE 2008 is

Antiquity, the journal of World archaeology established in 1927 and currently edited by Martin Carver (Professor Emeritus in the Department of Archaeology at York), has cause to celebrate. An indicator of Antiquity’s value to the academic community was the number of articles published in the journal submitted by UK University staff in their RAE 2008 submissions. Antiquity came top with 62 articles (see Table) and the Journal of Archaeological Science was a close second, with 61. There was then a longish gap before the next most cited general interest journal (World Archaeology). That archaeology is fully multidisciplinary is also illustrated by the fact that, amongst the top 20 journals, nearly half (9) are science-based, and just over half have their roots in the humanities (11) .

Antiquity is obviously proud to have contributed to the high profile of the discipline and it is itself a broad church: of the 63 research and method articles published in the journal during 2008, 35 (or 55%) could be classified as humanities articles, 15 as science-based, and a further 13 with feet in both camps. Coverage and time span are vast — e.g. Isotope evidence for the diet of the Neanderthal type specimen (Richards & Schmitz in September 2008, pp. 553–59) or A traitor's death? The identity of a drawn, hanged and quartered man from Hulton Abbey, Staffordshire (Lewis in March 2008, pp. 113–24), the latter the more brutish of the two examples.

How all these journals will be affected by ranking by ERIH (European Reference Index for the Humanities) or by Impact Factor remains an open question.

Table (based on 837 papers in 233 journals, ranked by numbers by Prof I. Ralston, University of Edinburgh)