Why CRM?

Cultural Resource Management helps guide smart, sustainable economic development and safeguard important historic and cultural heritage assets.

Cultural Resource Management (CRM), is a process which strives to ensure that two very important values can coexist in our society: progress, and the protection of important cultural heritage.

With time, communities change and people’s needs and wants do so as well. As a result, changes to our physical environment, such as energy and transportation infrastructure projects or new residential development, are pursued.

Times of change in our built environment offer opportunities to discover and learn more about our cultural heritage, but can also bring threats to cultural resources, which might be disturbed or lost during the process. Cultural resource management ensures that important knowledge is gained, that damage to scarce cultural resources are avoided as much as possible, and that cultural resources are preserved, managed, and presented for the public’s benefit.

Cultural resource management firms, many of whom are ACRA members, play an important role in this process. A critical aspect of the CRM process is ensuring that findings are shared with the public, that all stakeholders to both the proposed project and to the cultural heritage concerned have a voice in the process, and that the best possible decisions are reached.

CRM helps enable smart development while also elevating important cultural heritage assets.

While CRM is often equated with archaeology, other disciplines and activities are included in its practice, such as historic archaeology, the research of historical records, anthropology, architectural history, the knowledge of cultural landscapes and industrial heritage, and more.