Postgraduate Cypriot Archaeology (PoCA) meetings are more like workshops than conferences. They were originally designed to provide postgraduate researchers in Cypriot archaeology with a forum in which to present their work, discuss some central themes of their research, meet people who work in the same area, and exchange ideas and information in a friendly and collegial environment. In line with this, one of PoCA’s main objectives and conceptions is the organisation and publication of the conference by doctoral students for doctoral students and recent postdocs (i.e. up to 6 years after completion of their PhDs).
PoCA’s first meeting was organised by Cambridge University and held in 2001. In the first years of its life, the conference remained a local event and mainly involved students in the UK and Ireland. The 2005 Dublin workshop was the first attempt to transform PoCA into an international event. The aim was to make the workshop inclusive of time periods not usually covered by the conference and to include cultural heritage management. Perceiving the need for the survival of such a forum, and the usefulness of interdisciplinary studies, PoCA 2005 welcomed participants from disciplines other than pure archaeology. In addition, it welcomed early career researchers, in an attempt to share ideas between beginners and established scholars. It also achieved, for the first time, an international profile, with participants from various countries, including Cyprus itself.
In the following years PoCA travelled to many places across Europe, taking the form of an international congress, with the papers published either in the form of proceedings, a collected volume under a broad thematic title, or as a special issue of a journal or a series. Following PoCA 2015 in Torino there was a gap of three years after which the conference was revived and held for a third time in Germany, organised by Humboldt University, Berlin.
During the 2019 meeting in Berlin, a resolution was made: it was determined that we, collectively, should ensure that this forum is kept going for many years into the future. In order to achieve this, it was decided that a steering committee should be established to secure the continuation, succession process and future of PoCA. In addition, it was resolved that a website with all the information on every PoCA meeting (since its beginning) would be hosted by the Archaeological Research Unit of the University of Cyprus.
During the meeting every year, each organising committee, following voting among the doctoral students and early career researchers, will announce the succession of PoCA. Ideally, candidates of the next organising committee should be there to present their proposal, after securing the support of their Institution.