Citizen participation and the changing meaning & value of cultural heritage across Europe

Wanneer, waar en hoe kunnen en dienen burgers betrokken te worden in erfgoedgerelateerde kwesties? Dit wordt het onderwerp van een internationaal netwerkevent, georganiseerd door Onroerend erfgoed, KIK-IRPA en FARO op 29 november 2019. De voertaal is Engels. 

Sprekers zijn zowel vertegenwoordigers van de Europese Commissie en ICOMOS als Europese onderzoekers en erfgoedprofessionals met ervaring in erfgoedonderzoek waarin participatie van burgers aan bod komt (Coventry University, Historic England, Amsterdam University of Arts, FARO, Onroerend Erfgoed ...).

Het event Citizen participation and the changing meaning & value of cultural heritage across Europe kadert in de realisatie van het actieprogramma 2016-19 van het EU Joint Programming Initiative Cultural Heritage and Global Change (JPI-CH). JPI-CH is een innovatief samenwerkings- en netwerkinitiatief tussen landen met als doel de nationale onderzoekprogramma’s op elkaar af te stemmen en gezamenlijk in te zetten op Europese onderzoeksuitdagingen zoals opgenomen in de Europese strategische Onderzoeks- en Innovatieagenda voor cultureel erfgoed (SRIA CH).

Lees de Engelstalige aankondiging:

When, where and how should citizens get involved in heritage-related matters? Seize the opportunity to learn from examples from all across Europe and discuss with colleagues the opportunities and challenges of heritage participation. Onroerend erfgoed – KIK-IRPA and FARO join their forces to organize this event.

Why we organize this event

Citizen participation is nowadays a general accepted way to align citizens perception to governance and decision making within the European society. In the cultural heritage sector, the idea of citizen participation has gained ground since the Council of Europe launched the Faro-convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (2005). The sector has in the past decade already undergone some major changes according to the principles of this convention. However, a serious rethinking of the expert-driven model of heritage conservation and management is crucial nowadays. 

Many questions remain unsolved: 

  • How can heritage professionals and policy makers be stimulated to include the meaning(s) people attach to heritage as an essential element in the way they handle heritage? What can help them in this cocreative practice?
  • How can citizen participation be used to involve and engage population groups that are difficult to reach (e.g. migrants or young people)? 
  • Which best practices are already available across Europe and how can the heritage sector learn from experiences with citizen participation in other sectors? 
  • Can citizen participation make people more aware of the value of cultural heritage?
  • Can it help heritage professionals and policy makers to include the meaning(s) people attach to heritage as a crucial element in the way they handle heritage? 

The programme

10.00: Welcome 

Session 1: General context-policy-theory: 

10.15: “Recognising the need to put people and human values at the centre...” The growing relevance of the Faro Framework Convention (2005): Marc Jacobs (Universiteit Antwerpen)

10.45: Participatory governance of cultural heritage. Turning principles into practice.Erminia Schiacchitano (European Commission)

11.15: Coffee Break 
Session 2: From research to Practice 

11.30: To participation and beyond: Cawood, North Yorkshire – a community in control of its heritage: Keith Emerick (Inspector of Ancient Monuments) – via videoconferencing

11.50: Assessing significance in a participatory way: the key to sustainable cultural heritage: Anne-Cathérine Olbrechts (FARO) 

12.10: Beyond participation - Street Values as a paradigm shift: Riemer Knoop (Gordion Cultural Advice)

12.30: Lunch break 


  • 13.15: Participation, Engagement and Resilience: Cultural Heritage and Communities in Europe: Neil Forbes (Coventry University, UK)
  • 13.45: Citizen participation and the instrument OERP from the Flanders heritage Agency: Anse Kinnaer (Onroerend erfgoed, FL) 

14.15: Coffee Break
14.30: Group Discussion

  • Citizen participation as seen by ICOMOS international: opportunities and restrictions: the case of the Notre Dame in Paris - Bénédicte Selfslagh (ICOMOS Vlaanderen-Brussel)

Our speakers

Keith Emerick is Inspector of Ancient Monuments, Historic England, Development Advice Team, North East and Yorkshire. Keith’s work is chiefly concerned with the conservation and management of privately owned and State managed archaeological sites, battlefields and monuments in North Yorkshire, the City of York, Hull and the East Riding of Yorkshire. His chief interests are in community heritage, day to day and intangible heritage and conservation philosophy. His current favourite project is one to record the fans and final season of football at Bootham Crescent, home of York City FC before the ground is demolished, and then use the information generated to shape the subsequent proposed housing development.

Professor Neil Forbes is Associate Dean Research, Faculty of Arts & Humanities, Coventry University, UK. His research interests traverse the fields of cultural heritage (contested and conflicted heritage, the memorialisation of war), and twentieth century history (interaction of foreign policy, international business and the European dictatorships). His many publications include Cultural Heritage in a Changing World (2016), and Multinational Enterprise, Political Risk and Organisational Change: from Total War to Cold War (2019). He has played a leading role in several national and international research projects, including a mass digitisation and creative archiving project in association with the UK’s BT and The National Archives, and as Co-ordinator of the EU’s FP7 RICHES project – ‘Renewal, Innovation and Change: Heritage and European Society’. He is currently Co-ordinator of two H2020 projects: REACH - ‘RE-designing Access to Cultural Heritage for a wider participation in preservation, (re-)use and management of European culture’ - the EU’s H2020 social platform for cultural heritage; and a Science with and for Society project on citizen science. He is a member of several professional associations and other bodies. 

Marc Jacobs is professor in critical heritage studies at the University Antwerp ( ) and holder of the UNESCO chair on critical heritage studies and safeguarding of the intangible cultural heritage at the Vrije Universiteit Brussel.(  The Council of Europe Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (Faro, 2005) was and is a lighthouse in his work as heritage worker, in particular during his mandate (2008-2019) as director of the ngo FARO. Flemish Interface for Cultural Heritage ( .

Anse Kinnaer studied agricultural engineering (soil science) in Leuven. She worked a few years on touristic and agricultural projects in the provinces of Flemish Brabant and Limburg. Since 2011 she works for the Flemish Heritage Agency on the topic of cultural landscapes. She started with guiding and advising management issues but soon became a landscape researcher, evaluating and protecting cultural landscapes and trees. At first the research was conducted in a ‘traditional’ way of expert evaluation, using a scientific method to determine a fixed set of heritage values.  Four years ago she started working on a new instrument, the Heritage Master plans. In this pilot project she experimented with a new more integrated approach of heritage research and visioning, that involves the participation of all stakeholders, including owners and citizens.

Riemer Knoop is classicst and archaeologist, director public television, public affairs lobbyist Dutch archaeology, member board National Museum of Antiquities. Since 1998, consulting, with Gordion Cultural Advice, policy and strategy of cultural institutions at home and abroad. As professor Cultural Heritage 2011-2019 (Amsterdam University of the Arts) did research social dynamics in and with cultural heritage. Published Michiel Schwarz’s A Sustainist Lexicon:  Seven Entries To Recast The Future - Rethinking Design And Heritage (2016), and was, with Schwarz, co-author and publisher ofStraatwaarden: in het nieuwe landschap van maatschappelijke erfgoedpraktijken (2017) and Meer Straatwaarden: een pleidooi voor erfgoedmaken als engagement (2019). (See this link and this link) Served as crown member of national Council for Culture (museums, cultural heritage), and in many other advisory bodies; sits on the board of various foundations and associations in the fields of heritage and culture. 

Anne-Cathérine Olbrechts graduated in 1994 with a degree in History of Art at the KU Leuven. She later obtained a certificate of part-time courses in conservation and restoration of paintings, polychrome sculpture (Academy of Fine Arts Anderlecht) and paper (Syntra West Brugge). From 1998 to 2011, Anne-Cathérine worked for Monumentenwacht, specializing in the preparation of condition reports and recommendations with regard to preventive conservation of historical (mainly church) interiors. From 2012 until 2016 she worked for the province of East Flanders as a heritage store consultant for preservation and management of archaeological collections and cultural heritage. She was also the manager of the transit and archeology store at the Provincial Heritage Center Ename. Anne-Cathérine has been a member of the 'Lam Gods' Commission and the Climate Network Flanders since 2008.

Erminia Sciacchitano - Policy officer at the European Commission’s DG for Education and Culture, and Chief Scientific Advisor of the European Year of Cultural Heritage, she contributes towards policy development on cultural heritage and economy of culture. She previously held positions of Head of Unit for research and international affairs in the Italian Ministry for Heritage and Culture. She has developed extensive experience in international cooperation, research, project management, policy development and negotiation, in many areas: from artists' mobility and creativity to inclusive access to cultural heritage and its social values, from creative economy to participatory and sustainable management of cultural resources and landscape. She recently curated the OMC Working Groups on participatory Governance of Cultural Heritage and on Heritage professions. Her achievements include the Italian signing of the CoE Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (Faro). Architect, she holds a PhD in Historic Buildings Survey and a Master’s in European Studies and International Negotiations.

Bénédicte Selfslagh is the Chair of Panel of the European Heritage Label, President of ICOMOS Belgium and ICOMOS Flanders-Brussels, and a board member of several non-profit organisations and committees. She works as a consultant on cultural heritage and World Heritage, and has a particular interest in Rights Based Approaches and participation, High-Quality Baukultur, cultural heritage and well-being. Her work experience combines the perspective of an international organisation (the European Commission), a state (Belgium), an international non-governmental organisation (ICOMOS) and the private sector. She held several international mandates including the positions of Secretary General of ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites), Rapporteur of the World Heritage Committee, and Chair of the Steering Committee for the Cultural Heritage (CDPAT) of the Council of Europe.

About the Joint Programming Initiative

The EU Joint Programming Initiative, Cultural Heritage and Global Change (JPI-CH) is an innovative  and collaborative Member State driven research initiative that streamlines and coordinates national research programmes enabling more efficient and effective use of scarce financial resources, exploit synergies and avoid duplication. 
This workshop “Citizen participation and the changing meaning & value of cultural heritage across Europe” is one of the outcomes of the Action Programme 2016-2019 that is related to the four main themes of the Strategic Research Agenda of the JPI-CH.

Wie dieper wil graven en op zoek is naar een sterk conceptueel kader, kan hier terecht.  Deze studiedagen, masterclasses en bijeenkomsten gaan in op de fundamenten van ons werk. Ze ondersteunen visievorming en strategie, of nemen grote dilemma’s onder de loep. 

Praktische info

KIK-IRPA, Jubelpark 1, 1000 Brussel
50 euro
Max. 80 deelnemers
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