The Discovery,  is a national archaeological research body supported by the Heritage Council. It conducts advanced analysis of Irish Archaeology and pursues its goals by identifying ‘gaps’ in our knowledge or areas where intense research is required or would be valuable. It promotes interdisciplinary research involving experts in the humanities (anthropologists, historians, linguist) and the sciences (particularly, sciences for landscape and environment of the past; paleoenvironmental, osteoarchaeological, geological, flora and fauna). It engages with constantly evolving new technologies in digital imaging and surveying techniques and promotes their introduction into the operation of Irish archaeological more generally. It develops outreach activities to communicate the results of its projects to the general public as well the academic community. These activities include the publication of scientific books and papers and collaborative outreach projects with national cultural institutions, third and fourth level institutions, local authorities and local heritage partnerships.
Over the past 25 years, the Discovery Programme has developed a wide range of experience and knowledge in the across a range of interdisciplinary research domains within archaeology which are applicable to the E-RIHS, including:  Applied technology & ICT-3D documentation and conservation of archaeological objects and monuments, development of online applications for the standardised recording of scientific archaeological data, development of services for the archiving, sharing and reuse of cultural heritage data including the development of a trusted digital repository for Ireland’s cultural heritage data;
Interdisciplinary archaeological landscape analysis combining historians, archaeologists, palaeoenvironmentalists, remote sensing experts and analytical chemistry;
Development of archaeology research and conservation strategies within Ireland acting as a central research node within the university, research institute, and state departments who deal with cultural heritage research.