Hiring a Cultural Resources Consultant
A Closer Look
Federal agencies, local governments, and applicants for federal assistance or permits may find it necessary to obtain professional consulting services in archaeology, history, or architectural history.
Selecting a cultural resources consultant is much like selecting consultants and contractors for other purposes. The consultant’s expertise, previous experience, record of performance, and fee should be considered.
- Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualifications: Does the consultant meet the Secretary of the Interior’s Professional Qualifications outlined in 36CFR61, Appendix A for the type of investigations being conducted? There are different qualifications for archaeologist, historian, architectural historian, or historical architect. Some consulting firms have many of these disciplines represented.
- Previous Experience: What is the consultant’s previous experience? Does the consultant have experience and knowledge appropriate to the types of resources (i.e., archaeological sites or historic buildings) being documented? Is the consultant knowledgeable about the regional history or prehistory? Has the consultant successfully completed similar projects in the past?
- References: Are references provided? Were other agencies or applicants pleased with the consultant’s performance and ability to deliver a satisfactory product on schedule? Does the consultant communicate well orally and in writing?
- Fee: Is the fee reasonable for the professional services being rendered?