Call for Papers

Twelfth International Conference of Young Researchers in Heritage

Université du Québec à Montréal (UQÀM)

September 28 - 30 september, 2017

In an increasingly globalized world, our definition of community may have expanded and changed, but a sense of belonging is just as important as ever. One important example of this is the phenomenon of heritage communities, which are united by cultural heritage. Although there is a multitude of possible definitions, The Faro Convention defines them as groups “of people who value specific aspects of cultural heritage which they wish, within the framework of public action, to sustain and transmit to future generations.” Beyond a simple interest in a particular heritage, then, these communities come together in order to enact change and to put into motion the necessary steps to protect and pass on that heritage about which they are passionate. In such cases, the conservation and the management of heritage have the possibility to be transformed, becoming no longer the sole responsibility of central authorities; instead, they have the potential to be shared by knowledgable members of communities that have themselves become comprehensive authorities. To reiterate, these are not activist and lobby groups who pressure the government to take control of heritage; they are communities that survive on the fringes of public authority and act independently from them.

Although the types of heritage involved may differ drastically—from a singular monument to entire built environments to intangible cultural traditions—the emphasis on communal or civic action is paramount. In such cases, change is often initiated from the bottom-up, beginning with a few concerned individuals, subsequently gaining the momentum and power to eventually change legislation or to attract particular forms of heritage designation or protection. For this to happen, the attitude of the community toward heritage as a whole is essential: in recognizing that heritage assets can foster a collective identity, the community will then be able to extract the resources that will be useful for its territorial development. Such grassroots projects impact a number of lives and often bring about issues of identity, belonging, sustainability, tourism, “authorized” versus “unauthorized” heritage discourses, the role of professionals and academics, and living with heritage, to name just a few.

The TwelfthInternational Conference of Young Researchers in Heritage seeks to dive into these issues and to explore questionssuch as: Whobecomes involved insuch projects and how? How areheritage communities encouraged and fostered? What arethe advantages and disadvantages ofsuch communities? How do these groups work with or in isolation from established heritage narratives andstructures? Are these communities influenced bysuch structures, and, if so, how? What are the challenges faced? Who arethe investors and to what end(s)? What are the funding mechanisms for heritage conservation insuchcases, and how do they differ from or respond to models of traditional, welfare-state funding mechanisms? Successful endeavors as well as those that have failed,can tellingly provideus with lessons for the future. Following from these ideas, this conference will seek to interrogate the ethical, political, cultural and social challenges and issues of heritage communities along three principal, but non-exclusive, axes:

  1. The genesis and development f heritage communities
  2. Integrated approaches to the managementf cultural heritage: the rolef heritage communities between the different levelsf public authority (local, regional or national)
  3. The impef public input in the establishment of regional and national priorities with respect to cultural heritage: what place is there for heritage communities?

Since 2005, the International Conference of Young Researchers in Heritage has invited young scholars to present their research on various aspects of heritage, and has been held in Canada, Europe and South America. The conference is organized under the scientific supervision of the Canada Research Chair on Urban Heritage (Prof. Lucie K. Morisset and Prof. Luc Noppen, Université du Québec à Montréal) and its partners, and PARVI (Interuniversity Research on Narrativescapes, Cities and Urban Identities). The twelfth installment of the International Conference of Young Researchers in Heritage will be held at the University of Quebec in Montreal from September 28 to 30, 2017, under the scientific direction of Myriam Joannette and Dr Jessica Mace.

We invite young researchers across all disciplines and nations to submit proposals for 20–minute papers based on any aspect of heritage communities, from case studies to theoretical analyses, that will instigate further discussions and reflections. Proposals should be no more than 500 words, accompanied by a title and a short biography, and must be sent to  Questo indirizzo email è protetto dagli spambots. È necessario abilitare JavaScript per vederlo..ca by April 24, 2017. Proposals and papers can be in either English or in French. All proposals will be evaluated by a scientific committee and judged in relation to their originality and to the conference theme. Travel expenses may be partially subsidized, subject to budgetary restrictions. It is possible that the best papers presented at the Twelfth International Conference of Young Researchers in Heritage may be scientifically evaluated and published in an edited volume.

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