The Roadmap to Becoming a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist

The Roadmap to Becoming a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist

Are you interested in pursuing a career in cultural resource management anthropology? This comprehensive guide will provide you with the essential steps and information needed to kickstart your journey towards becoming a successful cultural resource management anthropologist. From acquiring the necessary education and skills to gaining practical experience in the field, this roadmap will outline the key milestones and requirements to help you achieve your career goals in cultural resource management anthropology.

Education and Training

For those interested in becoming a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist, a strong educational background is essential. This typically includes both undergraduate and graduate degrees in relevant fields.

Undergraduate Degree in Anthropology

The first step towards a career in Cultural Resource Management Anthropology is obtaining a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology. This degree provides students with a solid foundation in the principles of anthropology, including cultural anthropology, archaeology, and biological anthropology. Courses in research methods, cultural heritage management, and historical preservation are also beneficial for those pursuing a career in Cultural Resource Management.

Graduate Degree in Cultural Resource Management

Many employers in the field of Cultural Resource Management prefer candidates with a graduate degree in Cultural Resource Management or a related field. A master’s degree in Cultural Resource Management provides students with specialized training in managing and preserving cultural resources, conducting archaeological surveys, and working with stakeholders to ensure the protection of cultural heritage sites. Some programs may also offer opportunities for students to specialize in areas such as historic preservation, museum studies, or public archaeology.

Fieldwork and Internship Experience

In addition to formal education, gaining practical experience through fieldwork and internships is crucial for aspiring Cultural Resource Management Anthropologists. Fieldwork allows students to apply theoretical knowledge in real-world settings, while internships provide valuable hands-on experience working on projects related to cultural resource management. These experiences also help students develop essential skills such as field research, data analysis, and report writing, which are highly valued by employers in the field.

Skills and Qualifications

Cultural Resource Management Anthropologists play a crucial role in preserving and interpreting cultural heritage. To excel in this field, individuals must possess a unique set of skills and qualifications.

Research and Analytical Skills

One of the most important skills for a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist is strong research and analytical skills. This includes the ability to conduct thorough research, analyze data, and draw meaningful conclusions. These skills are essential for understanding the cultural significance of artifacts and sites, as well as for interpreting their historical context.

Communication and Writing Skills

Effective communication and writing skills are also critical for Cultural Resource Management Anthropologists. These professionals must be able to clearly communicate their findings to a variety of audiences, including fellow researchers, government officials, and the general public. Strong writing skills are essential for producing reports, articles, and other written materials that convey the importance of cultural resources.

Project Management Skills

Cultural Resource Management projects often involve multiple stakeholders, tight deadlines, and complex logistics. As a result, project management skills are essential for success in this field. Cultural Resource Management Anthropologists must be able to plan and organize research projects, coordinate with team members and collaborators, and ensure that projects are completed on time and within budget. Strong project management skills are key to effectively managing the preservation and interpretation of cultural resources.

Career Path

Cultural Resource Management (CRM) Anthropology offers a variety of career paths for professionals in the field. From entry-level positions in CRM firms to senior roles in academic institutions, there are opportunities for growth and advancement at every stage of your career.

Entry-level Positions in CRM Firms

Entry-level positions in CRM firms provide an excellent starting point for individuals looking to kickstart their career in cultural resource management anthropology. As a junior staff member, you may be responsible for conducting fieldwork, assisting with research projects, and contributing to report writing. These positions offer valuable hands-on experience and the opportunity to work with experienced professionals in the field.

Mid-level Positions in Government Agencies

As you gain experience and expertise in cultural resource management anthropology, you may have the opportunity to advance to mid-level positions in government agencies. In these roles, you may be responsible for overseeing research projects, managing field teams, and collaborating with other agencies and stakeholders to ensure the protection and preservation of cultural resources. Mid-level positions offer increased responsibility and the opportunity to make a significant impact in the field.

Senior Positions in Academic Institutions

For professionals looking to take their career to the next level, senior positions in academic institutions offer a unique opportunity to contribute to the field through teaching, research, and mentorship. As a senior professor or researcher, you may have the opportunity to lead research projects, publish your findings in academic journals, and mentor the next generation of cultural resource management anthropologists. Senior positions in academic institutions offer the chance to make a lasting impact on the field and shape the future of cultural resource management anthropology.

Professional Development

When pursuing a career as a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist, it is essential to focus on continuous professional development. This can be achieved through various avenues such as continuing education, networking, and publishing research.

Continuing Education and Certification

One way to enhance your skills and knowledge in cultural resource management anthropology is by pursuing additional education and certifications. This can include attending workshops, taking online courses, or enrolling in advanced degree programs related to anthropology or archaeology. By staying updated on the latest research and methodologies in the field, you can strengthen your expertise and credibility as a professional.

Networking and Professional Associations

Building a strong network of colleagues and professionals in the field can provide valuable support and opportunities for collaboration. Joining professional associations such as the Society for American Archaeology or the Society for Historical Archaeology can offer access to resources, conferences, and mentorship opportunities. By attending conferences and networking events, you can connect with other professionals and stay informed about industry trends and best practices.

Publishing and Presenting Research

Publishing your research findings in academic journals and presenting at conferences can help establish your reputation as an expert in cultural resource management anthropology. By sharing your insights and discoveries with the broader academic community, you can contribute to the advancement of the field and enhance your professional credibility. Additionally, publishing and presenting research can help you build a portfolio of work that demonstrates your expertise to potential employers or clients.


In conclusion, becoming a Cultural Resource Management Anthropologist requires a unique blend of skills and experiences. From conducting fieldwork to analyzing data and writing reports, this career path offers a diverse range of opportunities for those interested in preserving and protecting cultural heritage. By following the roadmap outlined in this article, aspiring anthropologists can take the necessary steps to embark on a fulfilling career in cultural resource management. With a commitment to cultural preservation and a passion for understanding the past, individuals can make a valuable contribution to society through their work in this field.