SEAHA Centre for Doctoral Training


Conference 2021: Innovative Dialogues in Heritage Science

The SEAHA online conference will take place on the afternoons and evenings of the 8th, 9th and 10th June 2021, via Twitter and Zoom.

SEAHA conference 2021

Can heritage science be communicated effectively in 280 characters or less? That’s just one of the questions we’ll be asking at the SEAHA 2021 conference, in which interactive Twitter-based presentations will be combined with a series of keynote presentations and round-table discussions.
In-keeping with the conference theme of ‘Innovative Dialogues in Heritage Science’, we look to explore the opportunities presented by new media for sharing knowledge and research practice, at a time when digital communication has become an increasingly vital part of our continued work.
Delegates are invited to submit papers as a series of Twitter tweets, which will become the subjects of scheduled Qs and As and discussions on the web. Alongside this novel format the conference will feature live-streamed keynote presentations and panel discussions from a range of exciting speakers.

Why chose a twitter conference?

Twitter offers a user-friendly platform for communicating and discussing research questions and papers, which aligns well with the theme of this conference. Presenters will be given a time slot to put forward their papers through tweets of 280 characters or less, and open a thread of dialogue between other researchers and the public. The aim of using this format is to encourage multiple threads of discussion around heritage science topics, and to provide a focused session in which presenters can disseminate their research to a wide online audience.

There are many instructional videos on creating a Twitter account and tweeting which can be found on YouTube if you are unfamiliar with this platform. For example:

YouTube Widget Placeholderhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3-2Xomw92TQ



Examples of tweets for submissions

We have included some examples of tweets to help with your submission:

Example of a SEAHA tweet
Example of a SEAHA tweet

We have also created an example thread on Twitter for your reference here.

When writing your Twitter submissions, please consider the following:
-    Submissions need to be in English.
-    Please include relevant pictures where possible.
-    Please don’t include emojis.
-    Please include one hashtag which categorises your research area.
Note: The hashtags used above are example hashtags, when approaching the conference, presenters will be provided with the recommended hashtags for the event.

Twitter conference guidelines

Getting Involved 

Since this is a conference like any other, we encourage you to interact with other people as much as possible! There are several ways that you can do this. 

Leading up to the conference 

  • Look at the program and follow the presenters you’re interested in on Twitter. 
  • Follow the SEAHA Twitter account, @seahaCDT – this account will give an overview of live presentations. 
  • Follow the official hashtag #seaha2021 
  • If you’re already a Twitter user, post about the conference and the presentations you’re looking forward to, including shout-outs to those presenters using their Twitter handles and the conference hashtag. 

During the conference 

  • Ask questions during the live sessions! 
  • Retweet your favourite parts of each presentation. 

Conference etiquette 

  • A Twitter conference is open to all. Be respectful and welcoming to all and remember that you may have to take the time to explain a topic to someone who not familiar with it but is interested to find out more. 
  • The conference should be fun and interesting, but it’s also about serious scholarship. Avoid gratuitous emojis and gifs. 
  • Just as with a face-to-face conference, keep the discussions around presentations on topic, and make your comments constructive. 
  • Please don’t participate from an anonymous Twitter account. 

Guidance for presenters 

Each individual is responsible for presenting their own paper from their personal Twitter account. However, the @seahaCDT account will tweet an introduction to each paper, and will then retweet the first tweet of each paper and selected follow-ups. 

Twitter guidelines for paper presentations 

Please read through this whole document to get a clear understanding of what is expected on the day. 

Prepare your Tweets in advance 

Plan and write your tweets ahead of time, so that they’re ready to be tweeted out on the day. 

How to Tweet your paper 

Each paper will be allocated a thirty-minute time-slot. Participants will present their papers in the first fifteen minutes and the second fifteen minutes is intended for discussion and questions. Of course people are free to continue the discussion on twitter after this focused period. Please follow these guidelines when tweeting your paper: 

  • Presenters are allowed between 8 to 15 tweets for their conference paper. These tweets can be text-based (within the 280-character limit), image-based, or a combination of the two. It’s fine to include links to relevant or supporting material but the presentation should be centred around the twitter thread, not another web resource. 
  • Space out your tweets to fill the 15 minutes. You should try to aim for one tweet per minute or minute and a half. (Please note: if you save all your tweets as drafts in Twitter, then hit ‘publish’, the whole thread will be published at once. If possible, prepare your tweets in a separate document, then post them live, spaced out, one at a time. See also Formatting Your Tweets, below.) 
  • The first tweet in the thread MUST contain the conference hashtag #seaha2021. You can add other relevant hashtags based on the content of your paper. 
  • Your very first tweet should be the title of your presentation. 
  • Your last tweet should include a link to additional resources if you have them or relevant reading. Give visitors the chance to follow up and explore your topic more deeply. 

Try to cover the following topics in your series of tweets: 

  1. Title, author list and affiliations 
  2. Background or motivation for your approach 
  3. Explanation, methods and techniques. Include supporting materials such as diagrams where appropriate 
  4. Results and conclusions, and suggestions for future work 

Formatting your Tweets  
All presentations must be presented in one Twitter Thread. To thread your tweets: 

  • Send your first tweet with your title, opening information, and required hashtag(s). 
  • Reply to that Tweet 
  • Reply to the reply, and so on, until the presentation is complete 

Make content accessible 
You are encouraged to tweet images as part of your presentation. Make sure you include text descriptions to make these images accessible. When posting your tweet, either on your phone or your computer, you should see an option to write a description of the images you upload so that the content is accessible to people who are visually impaired. There is detailed information and guidance about this here. 

Twitter guidelines for poster presentations 

  • Conference delegates have the option to submit single-image poster tweets. This is an overview image giving key insights into your research topic, just as with a standard conference poster. 
  • Poster submission tweets should contain the hashtags #seaha2021 and #seaha2021Poster 
  • See information here about making images accessible by adding descriptions
  • At a physical conference, you would usually get the chance to stand next to your poster and give a quick presentation in person, highlighting the most important and exciting parts of your research in a quick, accessible way. At the SEAHA 2021 conference, you have the option to do this by recording a short video of yourself talking through the details of your poster. 
  • You can film yourself on any device, and upload the video as a reply tweet to your poster tweet, together with the hashtag #seaha2021PosterPitch. This can be done in any style from a normal speech to a poem, song or some other format – surprise us! Just make sure it is short and sweet – no more than a minute and a half long. 
  • #seaha2021PosterPitch is optional, so you don’t have to submit a pitch for your poster to take part in #seaha2021Poster. 


Conference support

We wish to be as inclusive as possible with our conference format. If you need assistance with your submission, or support taking part in this online conference, please don’t hesitate to email the conference committee at seaha.conference@ucl.ac.uk and we will get back to you.

 Day one, 8th June: Language | Day two, 9th June: Multisensory interactions |  Day three, 10th June: Public Engagements and Contact

Twitter Abstract Submission Form

Day one, 8th June: Language 

The type of language we use to communicate our research can reveal a lot about the purpose and scope of our work. Whether it is technical jargon associated with specialised laboratory techniques, or historical narratives designed to enthuse a museum visitor, effective collaborations and interactions depend on finding a shared vocabulary – and making space for other voices to be heard.
In this strand we invite papers which explore communication and collaboration across the different sectors of cultural heritage. We want to hear about the successes and the compromises of multi-disciplinary collaboration.

We will do this in two ways: 

•    Firstly, this day provides an opportunity for scientists to use the Twitter medium to explain complex research in an accessible way.

•    Secondly, we welcome submissions by thoughtful scientists that can reflect on aspects of the communication of their work. This can be within research projects or with the public. 

For example, in multi-disciplinary collaborations we reframe our output depending on the audience: the industry, practitioners, end-users or other stakeholders. Then there is the communication of research outcomes to a wider audience. When is the language of heritage science easy to understand, and when it is a barrier to communication? Are there better ways to communicate? 
We particularly welcome papers which explore how heritage researchers can work and communicate in inclusive and equitable ways. 

Day two, 9th June: Multisensory Interactions

Sensory research contributes in very relatable ways to both public and academic engagement and learning in the heritage sector. In this strand we explore the broad areas of visual, aural, olfactory, gustatory, and tactile interactions which are the subject of sensory and experiential heritage science research. 
Looking behind the scenes at visual methods such as imaging, modelling, mapping, and remote sensing, we seek to understand what they contribute to public and academic understanding of heritage sites and artefacts, and what they might say to us about our cultural values, such as authenticity, accuracy and truth.
Immersive technologies, such as augmented reality (AR), virtual reality (VR), mixed reality (MR), and 3D audio, have become increasingly prevalent in museum and heritage settings. We are excited to hear about immersive experiences, and how they might engage us with historical narratives and artefacts, provide educational opportunities, or simulate imagined realities, past, present and future.
We have strong emotional ties to our senses. In museums, the laboratory or the digital domain, and particularly in a period of lockdown and isolation, how does physical presence and contact, or its absence, affect our connection to heritage artefacts and experiences?

Day three, 10th June: Public Engagement and Contact

For the final day we shift our focus to public engagement, the spheres where research makes contact with the wider world. Input from a range of perspectives can be crucial when collecting data or assessing the impact of research outputs. With the recent steep challenges to effective public engagement in mind, we invite contributions on novel methods of engagement utilising mobile outreach, remote, digital and web-based approaches, as well as discussions of more traditional face-to-face initiatives.
The topics of multivocality and ownership of heritage are particularly welcomed. As the academic world strives to assert its relevance by presenting research outputs to a wider audience, debates around competing cultural narratives are becoming increasingly audible in the mainstream. Do people feel ownership and engagement with the heritage they experience on a daily basis in their local communities, or with that protected on their behalf at a national level? Should the values of heritage science research reflect those of the broader community and can crowdsourcing, open calls or new forms of outreach contribute to the goals of broader representation and inclusion?