Archaeologist Receives 2023 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award

Dr Stephen Davis, UCD School of Archaeology, recipient of the 2023 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award

Archaeologist Receives 2023 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award

Dr Stephen Davis, an Assistant Professor in the UCD School of Archaeology whose research interests include environmental archaeology and archaeological prospection, has been named recipient of the 2023 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award.

He was presented with the Award by Professor Mark Rogers, Acting UCD President as part of the annual presentation of the NovaUCD Innovation Awards which took place at the UCD University Club.

Speaking at the Awards event Professor Mark Rogers, Acting UCD President said, “The NovaUCD Innovation Awards are a key annual event at UCD recognising and highlighting successes achieved by our research, innovation and entrepreneurial communities across the University and I congratulate all those who have received awards. I would also like to take the opportunity of wishing them ongoing success in the future as they continue to deliver economic and societal impact through their commercialisation, consultancy, entrepreneurial and innovation activities.”

Dr Davis works in the field of remote sensing, in particular using ALS (Airborne Laser Scanning), also known as LiDAR, geophysical surveys, and multispectral satellite data in archaeological prospection.

In recent years Dr Davis has carried out 12 consultancy projects, through ConsultUCD, for several County Councils across Ireland, including Cork, Clare, Kildare, Limerick, Meath, Sligo, Tipperary and Westmeath.

In these projects he has used LiDAR data to detect archaeological features in the landscape where Councils/Transport Infrastructure Ireland have planned to construct new roads or new motorways, or as part of Council-led heritage projects.

His expertise, and the results of his projects have to date identified many hundreds of potential archaeological features that might otherwise have been impacted, providing advance warning to road construction projects of potential impacts. This has enabled construction companies and Councils to understand the impact of their locally planned projects and to adjust their plans as required.

On receiving the 2023 NovaUCD Consultancy of the Year Award, Dr Davis said, “I am delighted to be receiving this Award. I am especially grateful for the assistance of ConsultUCD in facilitating this work, and to colleagues in Transport Infrastructure Ireland for their significant foresight in implementing LiDAR-based prospection as a standard part of their road construction process.”

“I believe Ireland is an international leader in this field, and it provides not only the basis for exceptional dialogue between the public and private sectors, but also a wealth of data that can be used for sometimes unrelated research purposes. Analysis of these datasets is invaluable for both the construction and heritage industries, and large digital datasets such as these continue to revolutionise our understandings of the Irish archaeological landscape.”

Dr Davis has previously led projects at Brú na Bóinne, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the Hill of Ward, both in Co. Meath, integrating LiDAR and geophysical survey data to enhance our understanding of these important archaeological landscapes.

The other NovaUCD Innovation Awardees are;

2023 NovaUCD Innovation Award: Professor Stefan Oscarson, UCD School of Chemistry and Professor Stephen Carrington, UCD School of Veterinary Medicine (retired).

2023 NovaUCD Invention of the Year Award: Dr Joseph Sweeney, UCD School of Biosystems and Food Engineering.

2023 NovaUCD Spin-out of the Year Award: seamlessCARE.

2023 NovaUCD Licence of the Year Award: Associate Professor Siobhán McClean, UCD School of Biomolecular and Biomedical Science.

2023 NovaUCD Founder of the Year Award: Aidan O’Neill, founder and CEO, DOCOsoft.

2023 NovaUCD Innovation Champion of the Year Award: Dr Eoin O'Cearbhaill, UCD School of Mechanical and Materials Engineering.


31 March 2023

For more information contact Micéal Whelan, Communications and Media Relations Manager, NovaUCD, UCD Research and Innovation, e:

Editors Notes

Dr Stephen Davis studied botany at the University of Reading and subsequently environmental archaeology and palaeoeconomy at the University of Sheffield and completed his PhD in Liverpool John Moore's University.