Implications of Values-Based Approaches to Cultural Heritage Management and Conservation II

Start: Mar 11, 2014 06:00 PM
End: Mar 11, 2014 08:00 PM

Location: Room 209, Institute of Archaeology

UCL Institute of Archaeology

A series of workshops exploring heritage values and their implications for cultural heritage management and conservation will take place at the Institute, the second of which is scheduled for 11 March.

Session 2: Quantifying Values and Exploring Condition

  • The Imaginary Values of Palpable Things
    Dean Sully
    (UCL Institute of Archaeology)
    The definition of heritage conservation as the ‘careful management of change’, suggests there are some enduring values that can be deployed in decisions about how the present becomes the future. In mitigating the effects of the unrestricted change of our cultural environments, whether objects, buildings, or landscapes, heritage conservation is engaged in selecting which aspects of the present will be accessible in the making of the future. There is no a priori reason why a future imagined by heritage professionals will have any credibility with the people whose heritage they conserve (Durie, 1998).

    Heritage conservation is a fundamentally local act, intensely subjective and political, engaged in privileging certain ideas within heritage and removing others. Conservation can mediate between the actors in the process, give voice to multiple narratives, empower communities, and negotiate change. It can play a role in community building by reinforcing shared histories, cultivating collective identities, and providing a sense of belonging. Alternatively, it can exclude, define difference, and prevent rather than manage change.New concepts, frameworks, and approaches leave open the possibility of creative and diverse solutions within the theory and practice of contemporary heritage conservation. This points to the role of conservation professionals in the future to act as facilitators enabling people to engage with their cultural heritage, rather than as experts prescribing certain actions.
  • Exploring the Interdependence of Material Degradation and Heritage Values in Archival Collections
    Kalliopi Fouseki
    (Centre for Sustainable Heritage)
    This paper will draw on the findings that emerged from the 'Collections Demography' project, a project that was funded by the EPSRC/AHRC Heritage Science Programme. The paper will illustrate the mixed methodological approach that was adopted in order to explore users' (readers or visitors) attitudes at archives, libraries and historic houses towards the collections and their material degradation. The project combined qualitative and quantitative methods in order to investigate the interrelationship of values assigned by users to archival/library collections with their material degradation. This issue is explored within the context of collections that are intended to be read or used for research purposes as well as collections that are intended to be exhibited in historic houses.
Round Table Session

The discussion and workshop session will explore the concept of “condition” in relation to both tangible and intangible elements of cultural heritage. The degree to which either values or condition can be considered objective will be discussed, as will past and potential future efforts at the quantification of both concepts.

Informal Research Presentations

There will be an opportunity to present ongoing research or research ideas in an informal setting in an effort to provide a forum for interdisciplinary feedback and facilitate the formation of interdisciplinary research projects. Please contact Harald Fredheim if you wish to discuss your research.

The series will focus on the nature of heritage values and the broader implications of values based approaches in cultural landscapes, urban environments, archaeological sites, historic buildings & monuments, museum collections and cultural artefacts. It will include perspectives from a broad range of disciplines such as, anthropology, archaeology, art history, human geography, town planning, architecture, cultural economics, international development, tourism, human rights, environmental sustainability, cultural politics and art.

It is hoped that this series will form the basis of future interdisciplinary collaborative research projects related to heritage values.

All UCL staff and students welcome.

For more information, contact Harald Fredheim (leif.fredheim.12@ucl.ac.uk)

Future workshops

Previous workshops