Geophysics Group


Members of the Chartered Institute for Archaeologists (CIfA) and the wider archaeological geophysical community have come together to form the CIfA Geophysics Group (GeoSIG). Open to both CIfA members for free and to non-CIfA members for a small fee. The GeoSIG represents the interests of archaeological geophysicists to CIfA and in the Institute's activities.

The role of GeoSIG is to

  • act as a focus for CIfA members interested in geophysics
  • produce documents and guidelines relating to geophysical work
  • promote geophysical work constructively within the structure of archaeology

GeoSIG is working closely with ISAP, NSGG, and EuroGPR to ensure that we keep up to date with developments in the wider geophysical community. The committee also has close links with the Near Surface committee of EAGE.

Join the Group

Membership is free to CIfA members. Non-members need to pay an annual £10 fee


Email the committee at ifageosig [at]
Twitter -


The GeoSIG committee comprises of:

Lucy Parker (formally Learmonth) (Chair)
Ed Burton (Secretary)
Andrew Hutt (Treasurer)
Mark Whittingham (OCM)
Simon Haddrell (OCM)
John Walford (OCM)
Sam Harrison (OCM)
Graham Arkley (OCM)
Finn Pope-Carter (OCM co-opted).

Advisory/liaison members:
Matt Guy (NSGG](
Paul Linford - HE & ISAP liaison
Alastair Ruffell - Forensic Archaeology group liaison

There are representatives from ISAP, [, EuroGPR, EAGE and Historic England, and plans to include representatives from ALGAO, Cadw, Historic Scotland and NIEA

Specialist competence matrix

We have recently introduced specialist competence matrices, which have been compiled by our CIfA special interest groups and are tailored to their specific areas. These are to assist applicants and the Validation committee to see where you demonstrate the grade applied for.

Forthcoming events

For information about upcoming events, please visit our event calendar.

Previous events

  • Conference Session: CIfA2019 Archaeology: values, benefits, and legacies 24 to 26 April 2019, Royal Armouries Museum, Leeds
    During the CIfA 2019 GeoSIG “Archaeological Geophysics: Why do we do it? Is it done well? Does it matter” session, Mark Whittingham (GeoSIG OCM / Phase Site Investigations Ltd) presented “Why aren’t we doing it like this?” to kick off the session. Over the coming year CIfA’s Geophysics Special Interest Group (GeoSIG) will be updating the standard and guidance for archaeological geophysical survey to bring it in line with current techniques, methodology and best practice. Before the guidance is completed we want to consult with the wider archaeological community to find out what the current perception of archaeological geophysics is. Do archaeologists think that generally they are up to date with methodologies and techniques? If they do think they are is this actually true?! If not, what can we do about it?

Our discussion seminar session will give an opportunity for papers to be presented that highlight current methodologies, techniques and data quality. The session will also allow for detailed discussion on the role of geophysics and best practice. This will hopefully give feedback that will be invaluable in compiling updated guidance that not only informs but is relevant to both practitioners and end users of geophysical surveys.

See the flyer for more information

  • AGM 2018
    The afternoon included the AGM (including nominations for committee), a committee meeting (open to all attendees) and a guest speaker, Dinah Saich (Principal Archaeologist for South Yorkshire Archaeology Service) who gave a short presentation on how geophysics fits into the planning process and upcoming development projects of potential interest in the area over the next couple of years.

  • Talking 'bout my generation - Early career archaeological Geophysicists session
    The Chartered Institute for Archaeologist’s (CIfA) Geophysics (GeoSIG) and New Generation groups held an afternoon session at the International Conference of Archaeological Prospection (ICAP), University of Bradford. The aim was provide to a forum to discuss how to begin a career in commercial archaeological geophysics, plus CPD training to improve delegates’ employability. For more information, click here.

  • AGM in January 2017
    We had identified a number of key initiatives that we really wanted to see come to fruition over the following 12-18 months and was requesting help and support from those with the experience and passion for archaeological geophysics to help realise these ambitions: Data Archiving, Technical Papers, Standards and Guidance, Health and Safety and communications. If you would like to know more about the committee and their aims please get in touch via groups [at]

  • CIfA GeoSIG/ADS workshop
    At the end of 2016 GeoSIG held a workshop in conjunction with ADS on the archiving of geophysical data.
    A spreadsheet of the unedited responses was compiled - these were written up directly from the group notes made on the day. There were a number of actions to come out of the day which the group worked on enacting. The most immediate task was be a poll to determine the spread of survey sizes undertaken in the UK over the last couple of years. This information was expected to be key to helping ADS evolve the submission process for geophysical datasets.

AGM minutes

Committee minutes

Three-year plan

Business plan 2017 - 2022