Session: #174

Theme & Session Format

Archaeological heritage and museum management: future chances, future risks
Session format:
Regular session

Title & Content

Archaeology, Heritage and Public Value
The ideas of 'risk', 'chance' and 'challenge' all imply a series of value judgements around what we perceive as worth interpreting, preserving, managing and keeping accessible, in the present and for the future. These value judgments can be implicit or markedly explicit, but they lie at the core of the trajectories we co-design and implement for heritage objects, places and practices. Although there is substantial literature on the topic of social, cultural and economic value in archaeology (e.g. Bonacchi 2013; Burtenshaw, 2017; Jones 2017), and arts and culture more generally, a fundamental rift still remains between economic approaches to value and social ones; and between policy-makers' preferences for econometrics and quantitative measurements, and academic critique of these methodologies and the objectifications and reductionism they can entail (O’Brien 2014; Belfiore & Upchurch 2013). In this session, we invite speakers to embrace the challenge of re-thinking ideas of public value in archaeology and heritage, and of reflecting on the ways in which different value theories and methodologies can be drawn upon to practically identify goals and priorities for heritage practice. We welcome papers that address definitions of public value/s in archaeology and heritage, from a social and/or economic point of view, describe how such concepts can be assessed, and how they contribute to a certain vision of future societies. Papers can be either entirely theoretical or draw on case studies from Europe or further afield. One of our aims is, indeed, to bring different visions and value notions into dialogue in order to think of heritage futures in more collaborative and creative ways.
Social value, Economic value, Future planning, Heritage management, Heritage experiences
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Main organiser:
Chiara Bonacchi (United Kingdom) 1
Herdis Hølleland (Norway) 2
1. University of Stirling
2. Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research (NIKU)