The artifacts and information that are collected by archaeologists must be preserved for future generations to study. These collections are part of our cultural heritage. Archaeologists have a responsibility to make sure that the collections and all the information about them are stored properly so that future scholars will be able to continue their study. New techniques in the future may allow us to learn much more about the past from the materials that are already in our labs.
Curation involves ensuring that materials are inventoried and packaged properly, with appropriate labels on artifacts. The information about the collections, including the field forms, are also stored with the collection because these provide the context for the collections.