The CHEurope project identifies a set of challenges derived from the growing politicization of heritage and its entanglement with some of the key socio-political issues of our times: urban conflicts, digitality, the future of welfare, and public involvement. Public involvement, in particular, is crucial due to the increasing participation of people in different forms of government and self-government in the management of the res publica. This project’s primary goal is therefore to reflect on the ‘futurity’ of heritage and to train researchers to recognise in these novel demands new possibilities for using museums, cultural and natural heritage sites, and archives, in innovative ways.
By bringing together a set of key European academic and non-academic partners, CHEurope positions itself at the heart of the emerging field of critical heritage studies to promote a new methodological framework encouraging a stronger integration between theory and heritage practices and applying it for a more efficient training in heritage management and the development of cultural industries in Europe.
Research and training activities will focus on 5 fields of heritage studies with a strong potential for innovation and change: Heritage Futures that situates heritage in present and future social and cultural changes. The theme of Curating the City analyses current changes in urban heritage and space. From here we proceed with the notion of the Archive and its future in a digitized world, which anchor the foundational knowledge of heritage in museums and archives. Heritage and Well-Being suggests innovative uses of cultural heritage in the health sector. Finally Management and citizen participation focus on the public domain and how management must engage critically with this interaction.