Production of the Bulletin continues to achieve ‘firsts’. This volume is the first (and last!) to be produced by ‘remote control’ while I am on sabbatical leave. This has meant that it was a little late to the printers, owing to periodic lack of access to internet connections, but that it happened at all is a sign of the great value of the internet in such circumstances. I am indebted to Sean Ulm and the research staff and volunteers in the University of Queensland ATSIS Unit for doing the work I was unable to do while on the road.
I typed this editorial in beautiful rural Burgundy, sitting by the fire in the study of my friend and colleage Jean-Christophe Galipaud, President of France’s Société des Océanistes. Although now as firmly planted here in Epineuil as the pinot noir on the surrounding slopes, until recently he was a long-term resident of the South Pacific, where he continues to undertake archaeological research for the Institut de Recherche pour le Dévelopement (IRD, perhaps still better known as ORSTOM, Office de la Recherche Scientifique et Technique Outre Mer). Jean-Christophe is one of a small number of Francophone archaeologists who work in Oceania and he kindly provided a field report for publication in the present issue. Two other such scholars, Christophe Sand and Frédérique Valentin, published a field report with Fijian colleague Tarisi Sorovi-Vunidilo in WAB 11, while a third, Jean-Michel Chazine, whose research focus includes island Southeast Asia as well as Oceania, published on Borneo in an earlier volume and will do so again in a later one.
While of course I welcome contributions from and about Europe, in any language, I will continue to include studies by Francophone researchers working in the Pacific and other non-European regions as they are made available to me, just as I will continue to publish material from or about the non-European Hispanophone world of the sort that I have included in this and earlier issues of the new Bulletin. I hope I will occasionally be able to persuade contributors from such regions to give me material in French, Portuguese or Spanish as well as (or instead of) English. Pier Paolo Frassinelli and Maggie Roynane’s piece in this issue is a great start in this regard.
Material from other places and/or in other languages is of course also very welcome, and I look forward to more contributions from Asia and Africa. If you have something you think would be suitable, please send it to me at any time, by mail, fax or email. I am happy to receive field reports such as the one in this issue by Jean-Christophe Galipaud as well as research papers, notes, commentary, reviews and announcements. Reviews of internet resources would be particularly useful. I also emphasize that the membership needs to receive regular news from regional representatves if WAC is to function in the way it is intended to do.
This issue is the second of the ‘new-look’ Bulletin to appear with a flat spine which allows the title and volume number to be printed on it. I was only able to achieve the minimum 100-page thickness required to make the flat spine possible by adding a paper of my own to the material I received from other contributors. This is something I am not keen on doing regularly. The shortfall occurred because several people were unable to submit papers they had promised. I know now that I should have held some material over from WAB 11, which was much thicker than required – one lives and learns! It would be easier, though, if people provided the copy they undertake to submit.
One member has told me that their WAB 11 fell apart when they opened it wide. This may be a result of excessive thickness in relation to the height of the volume. If anyone else had the same problem they should contact me.
Readers will find in the next section the news that WAC5 will be in Washington D.C.. I have included U.S. news in different parts of this issue to help familiarize readers with important U.S. efforts in the management of American and world archaeological heritage.