How is the uncertainty of the deep future conceived of and managed in different fields of conservation practice?
What do we mean when we say ‘forever’? In this theme, we’re comparing three domains and seeing how they can challenge, inform and strengthen each other: the heritage ‘forever’ that is present in designations like UNESCO’s World Heritage Site; the ‘forever’ of messages sent to deep space; and the ‘forever’ of nuclear waste disposal. We’ll be asking how these different futures are constructed and manipulated in the present. How can we recognise these futures in the world around us? Heritage is often said to be the human legacy preserved for the benefit of future generations. However, it typically remains unclear precisely when these future generations will live and how we can make the right decisions in the present with their best interests in mind. The main challenge lies in how to prepare for the future’s inherent uncertainty. The aim is to capitalise on the creative potential released by the common acknowledgement across these organisations of an uncertain future, with the intention to conceive of heritage differently. What happens when we come to see nuclear waste as heritage? How can a space message transform the human legacy? Can heritage help us reduce risks of future development on Earth? We will explore specifically how the proposed Lake District World Heritage Site operationalises such visions of uncertain futures.
World Heritage Site Management
World Heritage Sites are the common heritage of humanity, managed to promote peace and understanding. How long should they last?...
Deep Space Messaging
Messages to deep space address an audience far in the future, perhaps after the demise of humanity. Can heritage think that far?...
How does heritage work when we’re ‘Living in the Future’?
Heritage Futures at the 2018 Association of Critical Heritage Studies Conference
Members of the Heritage Futures research team will be convening and presenting at seven sessions at the Association for Critical Heritage Studies 2018 conference at Zheijang University in Hangzhou, China from 1st-6th September.
If you’re heading there, come check out (at least) one of our sessions. Or follow our twitter @Future_Heritage and website for updates resulting from these sessions.
Heritage Futures: Some thoughts on the value of comparative research to critical heritage studies
04/07/2018 — 04/07/2018
Holtorf, C. (2017). The Archaeology of Time Travel. Archaeopress, Oxford.
Are heritage futures relevant to UNESCO?
“Los ecos del Proyecto Huemul” exhibition opens in Argentina
The Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Company (SKB) has been assigned the task of ...
Performing the Processes and Challenges of Early Career Researchers
Högberg, A., and Holtorf, C., 2014 "Nuclear waste as cultural heritage of the future" 14361. In: WM2014 Proceedings WM Symposia
Cabinets of Consequence
01/06/2016 — 29/06/2017
The Octagon Gallery, University College London
A Berlin Thought Experiment: Heritage Futures Visits CARMaH
Heritage Futures at the IUCN
Holtorf, C. and Högberg, A. (2015). Archaeology and the future: Managing nuclear waste as a living heritage. In OECD/NEA (Eds.) Radioactive Waste Management and Constructing Memory for Future Generations; 97-101. Nuclear Energy Agency, no. 7259. Paris: OECD.