Heritage is a global concern yet so often experienced locally, through specific sites and landscapes, places and monuments. There are ongoing debates involving heritage professionals, practitioners, academics and NGOs about the threats and risks to cultural and natural heritage through ‘global challenges’, such as climate change, urbanization, conflict and migration. Strategies for integrating heritage into decolonisation initiatives in particular are crucial to addressing each of these challenges.
It is important for all of us and all our futures that these debates are engaged with, and Heritage Hub researchers and partners are actively involved in collaborating on projects exploring global heritage and its local impacts, across the world, in varying spatial contexts. We have particular expertise in a wide range of countries around the globe, on every continent. Current projects have focused on Bangladesh, India, Surinam, Syria, Tanzania, Turkey, and the United States to name but a few.
Strengthening partnerships and collaborations is critical, for heritage globally has a role to play in a range of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) whether through debates on tangible heritage or intangible heritage, or indeed both. An integrated approach, where tangible and intangible heritage are understood together, working with communities and NGOs, is proven to be a sound basis for global heritage projects. It will also help strengthen our innate ability to translate across our diverse cultural traditions. Here our recent research activity in Majuli, in India, on climate change and ‘hidden heritage’, led by Dr. M. Satish Kumar, is a good example of what can be achieved through closer collaboration between local stakeholders and communities and global researchers and networks.