Pereira Roders, A. and Van Oers, R. (2015), "Cultural heritage management, sustainable development and communities", Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development, Vol. 5 No. 1. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCHMSD-03-2015-0006Download as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Cultural heritage management, sustainable development and communities
Article Type: Editorial From: Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development, Volume 5, Issue 1
JCHMSD Volume 5 Issue 1 features two papers from Europe, and one from Egypt, Turkey, Thailand and Brazil each. While authors affiliated to institutions in European countries still lead the contributions to this journal, it is most satisfying to publish an issue with worldwide contributions, from institutions in Karlstad, Cairo, Nakhonpathom, Canakkale, Rome and Olinda. Once again, we would like to encourage contributions from researchers in emerging economies and developing countries, as well as those in shrinking economies and developed countries. Their experiences are as valuable and can help us build upon knowledge, as well as contextualize the practices of cultural heritage management applied worldwide to compare and share their role in fostering sustainable development.
This issue assembles a solid input to a broader understanding of the varied roles of communities in cultural heritage management, discussing the various contributions of expert and non-expert communities, contextualized in time and place. With the democratization of heritage-making, and the broadening of the value of cultural heritage for society, cultural heritage management is changing in approach, methods and tools, but above all, in range of stakeholders. Crucial to a broader understanding, therefore, is exploring how communities in different world regions are involved in cultural heritage management. The involvement of non-expert communities seems necessary, successful and welcome. Though, the papers also seem to address specific focus groups in isolation, which tends to lead to discontinuity over time, restricting long-term efficiency and effectiveness in cultural heritage management. As such, this issue is about sharing lessons and knowledge gained primarily through case studies, indicating areas for further research.
Svensson examines the role of heritage and participation to sustainable development in a postindustrial context, with special attention to the fields of attractiveness, growth and participation. The case study is a participatory project of archaeological excavations on a medieval castle ruin, initiated by the local municipality in the mid 1990s, in Saxen, in the northern part of lake Vänern, in Sweden. Svensson used as method long-term retrospective participatory observation, to investigate four escavation seasons and the people involved over a period of time. Svensson confirms the complex relationship between experts and citizens (as project participants), remaining heritage and history expert domains. Svensson concludes that heritage indeed possesses various qualities which can contribute to sustainable development, when activated in socially inclusive strategies, and integrated in different sectors of society.
Moving into more theoretical grounds, Shehata, Moustafa, Sherif and Botros report the development of a conceptual framework to enable the comprehensive and systematic assessment of development projects targeting the adaptive reuse of Islamic architectural heritage in Cairo. The conceptual framework was derived from an extensive literature review, searching for primary goals of adapting heritage for reuse, as well as related multiple criteria of assessment. The authors propose the framework to be used as a checklist in both upcoming development projects, as well as retrospectively. They foresee greater relevance to governmental institutions, developers, owners, community groups, practitioners and others in bringing forward successful adaptation schemes in Cairo.
Sirisrisak explores a different perspective of interpreting a Second World War shared heritage in Thailand. A comparative analysis is presented between three case studies, one Second World War heritage site in Nakhonnayok Province, and two more famous Second World War sites, Pai-Khunyuam Road in Maehongson Province and the Death Railway in Kanchanaburi Province. Sirisrisak used a triangulation method, in order to crosscheck the results obtained with historical research; interviews of stakeholders as the local residents who experienced Second World War, local governments and field researchers; and, observation of to date interpretation. Sirisrisak departs from the convention interpretation, predominantly focused on political agenda, towards an emphasis on the voice of the local residents and their perceptions, with a better understanding and respect among people with different cultural backgrounds as expected outcome.
Dogan compares the basic principles of ecomuseum theory with its implementation in Turkey, taking the two villages of Hüsamettindere and Boatepe as case studies. Considering ecomuseums as one of the approaches to ensuring sustainability, especially in relation to cultural tourism, Dogan presents an exploration, comparing several years of participant action research, and the results of an in-depth survey, interviewing 45 local participants. Accordingly, ecomuseum is widely accepted as vital and a practical model for sustainable development and tourism, but its contribution to the protection of cultural heritage and development of local areas remains poorly understood.
Similar to Turkey, Italy is also home to a great number of cultural heritage resources. Di Pietro, Guglielmetti Mugion, Mattia and Renzi discuss the results of an empirical research that aimed to identify the needs and expectations of cultural consumers with Italy as case study. Their findings are foreseen of great relevance to the gap of information, between demand and supply, when gathering data on the behaviour and expectations of cultural consumers. By applying a mixed method approach, integrating descriptive statistical, factor and cluster analyses, the authors aimed to provide findings that are expected to stimulate the development of innovative products and services, and contribute to the growth of the cultural heritage sector, and consequently, to the growth of Italy’s economy.
Zancheti and Loretto bring us back to fundamental research, discussing the proposal of a new concept, dynamic integrity. This concept was developed using the theory of complexity as base, product of a critical reaction to today’s concept of integrity and its implementation in contexts designated as urban heritage, under great pressure for change. This concept aims to emphasize continuity in changing urban contexts, key to the approach set forward by the UNESCO Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape (HUL). Accordingly, dynamic integrity is defined as a quality attributed to heritage properties, where attributes can express past and present meanings, and therefore, values, in a context of change, without relying on memory records in exclusive.
Ana Pereira Roders and Ron Van Oers