Heritage for the future/Science for heritage: A European adventure for research and innovation, 15.-16.03.2022

The aim of the conference is to highlight the diversity of heritage science, in France and in Europe, and to consider its central role in the major contemporary challenges (social, cultural, economic, political, and climatic) at national and European level, and its articulation with the main European initiatives which will be evoked during the conference: the European Green Deal, the measures in favour of cultural and creative industries, the New Bauhaus.

The event will be the opportunity to showcase during two days some of the most innovative results of research and innovation, their application on the ground, outside the academic and scientific frame, but also, of course, the future prospects. The conference aims at a wide audience, including the European academic and scientific community, cultural heritage stakeholders, cultural and creative industries, policymakers, the media.
The conference will be held in French and in English and will be accessible online.

Papers must address one of the four following priority themes1:

Theme 1 – A reflective heritage for a resilient society

Cultural heritage plays a significant role in how our societies come together and flourish. It is also inherent to how individuals find their place and forge themselves within a community. How does cultural heritage contribute to the creation of identities? To what extent can it be a driver for inclusion or exclusion? What are its different meanings? What are the challenges, the consequences of its conservation or, on the contrary, its endangerment?

The identification, appropriation and valorisation of cultural heritage can vary depending on the context. This implies that their ins and outs must be considered. What critical approaches can be elaborated to prevent its instrumentation? To qualify how it is interpreted? How can cultural heritage contribute to social cohesion, well-being, health, economic development?

Its relation to democracy and the challenges of democratisation will also be investigated. What are the interactions between cultural heritage and citizenship? How does cultural heritage fuel the ideological debate? How can it lead to conflicts and mistrust towards our democracies? How to facilitate access to the knowledge and data produced by heritage science? How to widen access to education and training in this field?

Cultural heritage can also be apprehended in its capacity to dialogue with creation. How can it feed the processes of creation and innovation? How can it contribute to renew them? Conversely, how can creation make the representations of cultural heritage evolve or contribute to revealing it?

Finally, far from being immutable, cultural heritage is a concept that evolves like our societies. What will be the future cultural heritage? What will be its new forms? How to identify and select what is or will be cultural heritage? How to include citizens and local or national communities in that process?

Theme 2 – Sustainable management of cultural heritage

This theme aims to investigate management strategies, governance models as well as methods of conservation of cultural heritage and its data.

It is important therefore to study and question how our societies administrate and pass down cultural heritage. What institutional, organisational, and economic structures allow the perpetuation of cultural heritage assets and know-how? What are the new forms of participatory governance? What alternative business models can be studied? How to find the right balance between use and protection?

The methods, technologies and tools associated with the preservation, restoration and transmission of cultural heritage are also at the core of this theme. What issues surround today’s practices? What are the materials, technologies, and innovative methods to improve the preservation of cultural heritage? What tools and measures facilitate the understanding of cultural heritage and the transfer of skills? What opportunities and challenges arise from the use of digital technologies and artificial intelligence?

Finally, sustainable management of cultural heritage also implies securing the future of the data and archives produced to enhance its understanding and preservation. How to preserve them in the long term? How to guarantee the sharing and interoperability of them?

Theme 3 – Cultural heritage in a changing context

Cultural heritage must be apprehended in a physical, demographic, social, environmental, economic, political, or cultural context that can change rapidly and on a large scale.

This theme will allow to address territorial and demographic changes that present threats as well as opportunities. How can urbanisation, population increase and decline, industrialisation and deindustrialisation, or intensive farming practices challenge conservation of built heritage, cultural landscapes, or local traditions? How do demographic changes influence the formation and management of cultural heritage over time? How can cultural heritage be integrated into urban and rural development policies?

Cultural heritage can also face threats created by events which, far from being new, can have far greater consequences in a globalised world. What are the consequences of conflicts, of theft and/or destruction of cultural assets for a society? How and with whom to tackle illicit trafficking of heritage assets? What are the consequences of a global pandemic such as COVID-19 on cultural heritage?

Another important issue concerns the conditions and consequences of the access to cultural heritage. What are the challenges caused by tourism, tourist accommodation and gentrification of historic cities and centres? What balance between the positive and negative impacts of mass tourism can be found? How to implement sustainable tourism? What marginal forms of tourism emerge, and how do they question what is cultural heritage?

Theme 4 – Cultural heritage facing climate and environmental change

Climate change and the deterioration of the environment is a major challenge for our societies. These must engage in fundamental transformations to mitigate its effects and adapt to its impact.

This theme will enable to address the effects of climate change on cultural heritage as well as the adaptation strategies that need to be implemented. What challenges does it pose to the preservation of cultural heritage? What tools and methodologies allow to assess its impact and how to mitigate it? How to implement ecologically responsible cultural heritage practices? Which past adaptation strategie(s) could help to improve the resilience of our societies?

Cultural heritage can also be a resource for mitigating the effects of climate change and contributing to sustainable development. What effect(s) can the (re)use of cultural heritage have on the environment? How can the knowledge and data from cultural heritage contribute to the study of climate but also to the emergence of post-carbon societies? What opportunities for creation could arise from it?

Submission of Papers

Proposals must be sent by email before 4 October 2021 to the following address: chloe.mirouze(at)sciences-patrimoine.org

The proposals will be assessed be an international scientific committee on their relevance, originality and degree of maturity. Proposals must consist of an abstract (maximum 2,000 signs, spaces included), submitted in English to facilitate the assessment.

Candidates must provide a short CV and specify to which theme(s) their proposal corresponds.

Selected proposals can be presented at the conference in English or in French, and in a format (presentations, round tables, workshops, posters, videos, etc.) which will be specified by the organizers according to the needs of the programme.

The conference will be filmed and published online.

4 October 2021: Submission deadline.
8 November 2021: Results of the call.

For any question regarding the conference or the call for papers, please contact:

Chloé Mirouze chloe.mirouze(at)sciences-patrimoine.org and Léa Orlandi lea.orlandi(at)sciences-patrimoine.org

1 The priority themes are drawn from the Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda (SRIA) of the Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage and Global Change (JPI CH).