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The Duckworth Laboratory

How to Apply


Affiliation to the Duckworth Laboratory is given:

  1. as the means of access to the Duckworth Collection and Laboratory; unaffiliated scholars may not carry out research in the collection.
  2. by the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory, who will consider the nature of the proposed research taking into account the current and proposed work of members of LCHES, and the overall research strategy for the Duckworth Laboratory.
  3. on the condition that all work to be carried out falls within the overall aims of the Duckworth Laboratory and LCHES.
  4. for a specific project and for a specific period of time.
  5. to both students and established researchers, although students are required to provide a letter of reference from their supervisors.
  6. upon agreement on the payment of bench fees at the current rate of £200 per month (pro rata).
  7. for both observational research and destructive sampling; the latter, which involves the donation of a sample from the collection to the affiliated scholar, will only be considered if carried out in scientific collaboration with a member of the Duckworth Laboratory.

Work in the Duckworth Laboratory carried out by affiliated scholars should:

  1. Ensure the safety and security of the material being used at all times;
  2. never remove any material from the Laboratory without the express permission of the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory;
  3. return all materials to the boxes and shelves where they were found;
  4. work with individual or small groups of skeletal remains at a time; if large numbers of remains need to be examined simultaneously for comparative purposes, the Laboratory’s research curator should be informed first;
  5. request permission to photograph and/or film materials in the Duckworth Collection.

Permission to work in the Duckworth Laboratory includes a commitment to:

  1. Provide the Duckworth Laboratory with a copy of data collected from specimens. This data will not be made available to other researchers without prior consent.
  2. send an electronic and a hard copy of any publications arising out of the work;
  3. include an acknowledgement that the work was carried out with the permission of the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory in all publications arising from research that includes material from the collections;.
  4. send copies of any photographs and/or films taken of material in the Duckworth Collection;.
  5. read and agree with the conditions of research affiliation to the Duckworth Collection.

Destructive Sampling

  1. Tissues received from the Duckworth Collection, or DNA extracted from these samples, cannot be transferred to a third party without express written permission by the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory.
  2. Specimens will be used only for the purposes stated in the Description of Research. The Description of Research may not be amended nor may the material be used for other purposes without written permission from the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory.
  3. All specimens should be photographed before and after sampling if the removal can be seen by examining a photograph. Photographs must be of sufficient detail to discern the area which has been sampled. One copy of each photograph, properly labeled should be sent to the Duckworth Collection.
  4. The researcher must provide a list indicating the catalogue number of the specimen, the kind and amount of material removed, the purpose for removal, and the date of the removal.
  5. Resulting analytical data and duplicates of tangible products - e.g., SEM photographs, histology slides, or (in the case of aDNA and biochemical sampling) GenBank accession numbers or computer readable copies of sequences - shall be deposited in the Duckworth Collection to become part of the specimen's permanent record.
  6. We request return of any unused portions of samples when the project is over. If a piece of skin, hair, bone, teeth, or fluid-preserved tissue has been used for biochemical analyses, we require the return of an aliquot of DNA to prevent need for additional destructive sampling of the same specimen. If slides of sectioned materials are made, we request representative examples be returned.
  7. We request detailed protocols for the extraction of aDNA from our specimens (both successful and unsuccessful). We also would like lists of genes that have been successfully amplified and sequenced from our specimens. We will compile lists of both successful and unsuccessful protocols to assist researchers with what we know can be a difficult task.
  8. The introduction of chemicals from casting of objects and elements can be detrimental to the integrity and preservation of the collection. Therefore, requests for casting of elements or materials (e.g., dental casting or cranial endocasts) will be treated as destructive sample.

Practical Considerations
While visitors to the Duckworth Laboratory are provided with as much help and support as possible, we ask you to bear in mind that this must be in the context of the day to day workings of the laboratory and the limitations of the resources available. Please note the following:

  1. All visitors must work within the regulations and Guidelines of the University Health and Safety policy ( http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/cam-only/offices/safety/publications/hsd016m/hsd016m.pdf ).  For more information regarding University Health and Safety visit http://www.admin.cam.ac.uk/offices/safety/publications/.
  2. The Duckworth collection is available for study between the hours of 9.30 am and 4.45 pm. Keys and cards are issued, subject to a deposit, on a daily basis.
  3. We are unable to provide accommodation for visitors, who are expected to make their own arrangements. Details of accommodation and other aspects of visiting Cambridge are available from the University’s web site (http://www.cam.ac.uk/cambarea/pages/tourist.html) and the Cambridge Tourist Office (http://www.visitcambridge.org/wheretostay.php) .
  4. We are able to provide calipers, long bone boards, and mandibular boards, but visitors are expected to provide all other equipment themselves.
  5. All arrangements for visits must be agreed in advance, and the visitors should note that there will be various times in the year when the facilities are closed.
  6. No eating or drinking is allowed in laboratories.
  7. Close attention should be paid to ensure that all material to be studied is returned to its original location and in the correct containers and only with its original reference numbers. If any form of provisional labeling is required please ensure that it will not damage the specimen in any way, and that it is removed before returning the specimen to its original location, if in doubt please consult the curator.
  8. The use of our 3D digital imaging (surface scanning) and reproduction (3D printing) facilities are available, prices are available upon request.
  9. Although conditional permission can be given for practical reasons (grant applications, etc), the final permission will not be granted until the confirmation of dates of visit.
** Please direct any enquiry to the Director of the Duckworth Laboratory, LCHES, Department of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Cambridge, or by email to duckworth@human-evol.cam.ac.uk







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