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The institute, headed by Dr. Zvi Gal, was established in 2007 and in 2010 it has become a research center within Kinneret Academic College. Its aime is to enhance archaeological research of Galilee during antiquity. As for 2018 the institute has sixteen members and fellows, whose academic scope varies: Protohistory, Biblical archelogy, archaeology and history of classical periods, medievals, archaeozoology as well as preservation and conservation.
The institute's activities include surveys, excavations, research, professional workshops, conferences and publications. The institute sponsors the "Galilean archaeology Workshop", which holds ten academic sessions annually, with the participation of twenty–thirty scholars of various institutions.
The institute publishes the "Land of Galilee" series devoted to studies and excavations reports. The series is produced by Ostracon. The institute has agreements for academic collaboration with several European and American universities and colleges, as well as the Israel Antiquities Authority.
The institute is located in the restored buildings of the old Hidjaz train (the 'Valley Train') within the southern campus of the college at Tzemach.

During the last years the Institute was involved in three international excavations and 4 local researches:

1. Tel Rekhesh with a Japanese team excavating the upper level of a first – second centuries Jewish farmstead, which includes a unique small synagogue.

2. With American team from Samford University, Alabama, at the Ancient Jewish village of Shikhin.

3. With NYACK College NY, excavating an ancient Jewish village at Bet HaBek/el-Araj, identified as Bethsaida/Julias.

4. The renewed research and study of the Chalcolithic burial cave at Peqiin.

5. A pioneering excavation at the biblical site of Tel Rosh in Upper Galilee.

6. An ISF (Israel Science Foundation) research project "Economic growth and religious materiality in Christian Galilee in Late Antiquity".

7. The last stage of the important research of the ancient Jewish synagogue at Umm el Qanatir in the Golan.