Statement of purpose
What's the story?
Structure and policy
Irish policy recommendations
Research programmes
Principal Irish megalithic sites
Boyne Valley map
The Indigenous Peoples' connection
About Irish megalithic sites
Historical background
Ancient Irish Monuments Appeal
Photo gallery
About the author
About the name
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View of Dublin taken by Spaceborne Imaging Radar
shot aboard space shuttle Endeavour on April 11, 1994 (click to enlarge)


(See also statement of purpose)


  1. Investigate the astronomical aspect of megalithic monuments, and the cultures that built them, by means of an integrated whole systems transdisciplinary approach involving open-minded archaeologists, astronomers, and anthropologists for the Institute's staff and consultants.

  2. Follow the guidelines published in the Methodology section of this proposal, including the use of non-invasive and non-destructive research techniques whenever possible, to conserve evidence and features which may as yet not be fully understood.

  3. Use the Irish megalithic heritage as its primary research base, while also investigating archaeological sites from the Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Neolithic and later periods in other parts of the world.

  4. Carry out a rigorous research programme to investigate the astronomical design of megalithic sites; other research topics to include astronomical references in Irish mythology, kerbstone counting, geographical alignments and geomancy, and acoustic properties of megalithic monuments.

  5. Influence the policy of Irish archaeological research and practise so as to more better understand and conserve the megalithic monuments for future generations.

  6. Engage in educational activities to disseminate the results of the Institute's findings (in collaboration with such educational institutions and other organisations as the Directors may find appropriate), through the World Wide Web, conferences, seminars, workshops, lectures, faculty training, and the publication of reports, newsletters, films, videos and interactive media.


  1. Location in Ireland, either in or near Dublin or perhaps in County Sligo which has a strong concentration of megalithic sites.

  2. Registered charity set up as a public company limited by guarantee and not having a share capital.

  3. Affiliate US non-profit organisation with federal 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status, to secure tax-deductible financial support from grant-making foundations and members of the public in the United States.

  4. Board of Directors or Trustees with at least one world-class archaeologist with direct experience of Irish megalithic archaeology, and at least one astronomer with experience in archaeoastronomy.

  5. Trans-disciplinary staff and consultants including experts in archaeology, Irish megalithic archaeology, astronomy, archaeoastronomy, prehistory, palaeobotany, ethnobotany, climate studies, anthropology, comparative mythology, Celtic studies, the study of local placenames and folklore, linguistics, Neolithic (along with Mesolithic and Paleolithic) art history, acoustics (because the performance of music in chambered cairns has been found to produce unusual Helmholtz resonance effects and may have been an integral feature of their design), statistical analysis, aerial photography, ground-penetrating radar imaging, cartography, surveying and geodesy (including the use of two- and three-dimensional GIS imaging systems), information technology, and fund-raising.

  6. Funding obtained through (a) financial support from governments, the European Commission, international agencies, foundation grants, corporate sponsorship, private donations, and membership fees, (b) revenue from consulting services, media products, and educational programmes, and (c) interest on a capital endowment to be secured from individual, institutional or corporate donors.


Please email your comments to Michael O'Callaghan at or contact him at this address.



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Updated 25 May 2001
For more information contact Michael O'Callaghan at



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