Professor May Cassar to direct UK Science & Heritage Research Programme
29 May 2007
The Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and the Engineering & Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) have announced that Professor May Cassar (UCL Bartlett School) has been appointed as director of the new UK Science and Heritage Research Programme.
The appointment follows the House of Lords Science and Technology Committee report on Science and Heritage. This recommended that the UK heritage sector develop a national strategy for heritage science that would conserve our cultural heritage for future generations, and emphasised the need for the UK to develop a research programme in the area.
Professor Cassar, Director of the UCL Centre for Sustainable Heritage, will provide intellectual leadership and academic coherence in the development of the Science and Heritage Programme. Her initial priorities will be to lead on its development, external coordination and outreach, as well as to engage in extensive networking with the national and international research community, including non-academic sectors. She will also establish the baseline level of funding across all the research councils, and develop a comprehensive map of recent and current research and training activity in heritage science.
Professor Cassar said: "This is a wonderful opportunity for this interdisciplinary field to grow the capacity of the sector, so that the best heritage science is undertaken at the best academic and heritage institutions. More importantly, this programme is about increasing the number of leading researchers involved in this work."
AHRC Chief Executive Philip Esler added: "We are extremely gratified to be able to appoint someone of such a high level of expertise and eminence in this area. The recent destruction wreaked on the Cutty Sark, and the numerous outpourings of support to restore it to its former glory are eloquent testimony to how we treasure such rare and important historical artefacts. The national sense of the value of these assets shows that adequate public resource should be devoted to their preservation and utilisation."
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Image: Professor Cassar