Breathing New Life into Old Information – Updating the IDP Stein Site Database

By Alexandra Sidebottom, UCL The beautiful 1921 Clarendon Press edition of  Serindia,  by Aurel Stein For the past six weeks, I have been undertaking a work placement at the International Dunhuang Project (IDP) as part of my Masters course. My main role has been updating and improving the existing Stein site database, and I am pleased to say this work is now complete. Sixty-seven detailed site entries have been included in the updated database.  The Stein site database is an internal record of all of the sites Aurel Stein excavated during his three Central Asian expeditions. Prior to this project, it was a loosely-updated resource, lightly filled in over many years by different people. There was no standardised method to inputting data, and important information was often overlooked. Some minor sites had entries, whereas major sites such as the Mogao Caves, Ming-oi and Lou-lan had nothing. I believe this was because of several factors - a variety of researchers working infre

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