Metal Detecting in Finland - An Ongoing Debate

Anna Wessman 1 , Leena Koivisto 2  and Suzie Thomas 1
  • 1 Department of Philosophy, History, Culture and Art Studies, Museology. University of Helsinki, P.O. Box 59, 00014 University of Helsinki, Finland
  • 2 Satakunta Museum, Hallituskatu 11, 28100 Pori, Finland


This outline article presents and critiques legislation as it affects the metal detecting hobby and the archaeological profession. It considers some of the ways in which metal detectorists themselves have caused controversy but also positive news in relation to archaeological heritage in Finland. A selection of examples of collaboration based on the authors own experiences is presented, also the impact of metal detecting on material culture and archaeological research. The continuing object-oriented focus of both metal detectorists and the media is identified. New collection and engagement strategies could enhance archaeological research, while engaging this particular section of the wider public.

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