Field Methods

The information collected from published and archival sources is updated and reassessed according to the results of fieldwork.

Through their contact with local institutions and individuals, the research team plans routes in order to effectively visit the villages and neighborhoods in the inventory. When the building, its remains, or the location of its non-extant body is determined, its geographical coordinates are taken by using a GPS (Global Positioning System) machine or a smartphone that can perform this task. The building located in-situ is photographed: Photos of the building is taken according to a protocol that includes a general view of the building and images displaying the building’s relationship with its immediate and larger surroundings, as well as images focusing on details of documentation value such as graffiti, ornaments, inscriptions, dates, etc. Observations on the access, current use, physical and social state of the buildings are recorded, in addition to information, when available, on its ownership.

As the field work progresses, the researchers update their schedule and routes in order to maximize the visited areas and buildings. After the buildings that are determined in collaboration with local partners are visited in situ, the field work focuses on visiting the remaining buildings in the inventory. By conducting interviews with the local inhabitants of these localities, which are outside the knowledge of local guides and sources, new routes are planned; the buildings that are mentioned in the interviews are added onto the inventory, if they are not already present there.