About us

NFDI4Objects is an initiative within the National Research Data Infrastructure (NFDI) to build a consortium dedicated to the material heritage of around three million years of human and environmental history.

Currently, research data resources are often stored in a decentralized, project-bound and temporary manner. Within the scope of the NFDI this research data shall systematically be made accessible to the entire German science community and networked both nationally and internationally. For the design of the National Research Data Infrastructures, users and providers work together in consortia.

The NFDI4Objects consortium addresses the needs of researchers and practitioners whose work focuses on the material heritage of around three million years of human and environmental history. Our community consists not only of archaeologists, but also of anthropologists, architectural historians, ethnoarchaeologists, geoarchaeologists, archaeobotanists, archaeozoologists, archaeogeneticists, palaeopathologists, archaeophysicists, archaeological conservators and archaeometrists, as well as museums, archives and heritage agencies. NFDI4Objects covers the material legacies of past human activities: Artefacts, architecture, archaeological features and anthropogenically shaped landscapes as well as biological or ecological remains.

OUR Aims

In order to fulfil this task, the consortium is pursuing three overarching objectives:

NFDI4Objects is an initiator and serves to improve digital research and work processes within the specialist communities. The consortium advocates the establishment of the FAIR principles and actively accompanies the digital transformation of working methods.

NFDI4Objects meets the challenge to open up large and complex data sets from research processes, and at the same time to enable sustainable and long-term international access to the digital results of research projects according to the needs of the users.

NFDI4Objects stands for a joint portfolio of expert advice and reliable, on-demand and secure services in a distributed consortial network.

Research Data

In the multidisciplinary research processes described above, data is generated making numerous concrete technical and conceptual demands on a community- and user-oriented infrastructure. The following data types and products are of central importance for the user community of NFDI4Objects:

Primary data

Object-related primary data can be the description of artefacts and their illustration, but also discovery contexts or historical buildings.

Sensor data

Data from mobile, active and passive measurement sensors that are processed or generated during preparation for or in the course of documentary work in surveys and field research.

Laboratory data 

Data generated in a controlled environment (laboratories).

Data products

Data products as a derivation of primary data that are prepared for use in research processes.

Historical data

Databases, digital archives (drawings, plans, photographs) and old data stocks, as well as local records, monument registers/local files, historical maps and archive data that need to be transferred to a digital infrastructure within the framework of research processes.

Further Informationen

The Community

NFDI4Objects brings together a dedicated community to create a research data infrastructure for numerous related disciplines.


Organised by subject groups or research methods, the NFDI consortia pursue the goal of ensuring access to and sustainable use of the research data relevant to them.


The structural bodies of the NFDI4Objects consortium include various operational tasks. All these structures have already proven their operational efficiency.