HERITAGE-PRO – Interdisciplinary Training for Professionals of Different Disciplines Towards Sustainable Management and Preservation of Cultural Heritage

  • Upgrade the interdisciplinary competences of the workforce of cultural heritage managers
  • Focus on better-synchronized preservation activities
  • Contribute to successful and cost-efficient heritage preservation activities

HERITAGE-PRO project was an essential contribution to the “European Year of Cultural Heritage” 2018 and beyond. The main objective was to upgrade the interdisciplinary competencies of the workforce of heritage managers all over Europe in order to better valorize expertise from different disciplines relevant for cultural heritage preservation.

Cultural heritage management all over Europe is done in silos of knowledge as the disciplines are mostly neither trained nor experienced to cooperate in a pre-defined and professional way. Formal education of art historians, restorers, conservators, craftspeople, and cultural managers neglects skills that are essential in their professional life for successful and cost-efficient preservation activities. They are trained as specialists in their field but never learn how to organise interdisciplinary knowledge and base preservation decisions on that. The challenge is how to bring these different disciplines, expertise, expectations, and visions cooperatively together in order to avoid future repairs or restricted use of a heritage site.

Therefore, there is an urgent need for an interdisciplinary training approach based on professional disciplines as well as social skills. A special need has risen during the last years by finding professional mechanisms for involving volunteers in the most satisfying way for them as well as for professionals.

The implemented HERITAGE-PRO approach:

  • a multilingual training scheme that takes place parallel to work with a transdisciplinary approach including all disciplines necessary for the successful management of preservation activities at heritage sites;
  • multilingual guidelines for heritage managers in order to give them support through challenging preservation processes;
  • a multi-lingual training kit for easy uptake of the training scheme and make it accessible in the most efficient way;
  • a concept for a training camp in a virtual environment for future heritage managers as well as young craftspeople in the heritage preservation subject in European countries (young people at their career start e.g. at the end or shortly after formal education).

Direct target groups are heritage professionals, e.g. those who are responsible in the field of cultural heritage preservation such as site managers and professionals included in preservation tasks (architects, archaeologists, conservators, curators, art historians).

Indirect target groups are craftspeople working at heritage sites (installers, carpenters, masons), administrators and policymakers (government officials engaged in public agencies, who are involved in the planning process of heritage at local, regional, and national level, politicians (with a mandate for cultural heritage), urban and regional planning specialists, members of European, national, regional and local non-governmental organizations and private sector, who are engaged in the field of heritage preservation and sustainable management, young people in formal education for cultural management, e.g. at universities in different disciplines, people in master craftsmen education, locals/volunteers e.g. in “circles of heritage friends”.

Reached and further expected impact and benefits

Impact is expected on local, regional, national, and European levels for better-synchronized preservation activities, improved cost efficiency for public and private heritage owners by avoiding wrong decisions of preservation issues, and a better understanding of the importance of sustainable efforts for Europe’s cultural heritage.

Long-term benefits are expected for the target groups in an upgrade of professional expertise, in protecting existing employment, and creating new and better-qualified employment. This strengthens and consolidates Europe’s outstanding and unique position in heritage preservation worldwide.