News and events

Conference - Sustaining the Impact of UK Science and Heritage Research - Register Now!

23 July 2013

Registration for the Science and Heritage Programme's 2-day landmark conference is now open.

The event will take place on October 29th and 30th at the Queen Elizabeth II Conference Centre in Westminster, London.

This landmark conference will showcase the results of 44 research projects funded by a 5-year, £8 million joint programme of cultural heritage investment by the Arts and Humanities Council (AHRC) and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). Speakers will present case studies and discuss priorities for the future direction of heritage science. 

Plenary speakers will include high profile figures in UK culture, science and politics: Margaret, Baroness Sharp of Guilford, chair of the Science and Heritage Programme, Michael Dixon, Director, Natural History Museum, London, and Dr Philip Campbell, Editor-in-Chief for the journal Nature. 

This conference offers a rare chance to hear from the many different disciplines of science and heritage conservation all under one roof. As well as seeing how this important field is developing across the UK, it will be interesting to find out how the field is developing internationally,” says Dr Michael Dixon.

Other speakers confirmed so far include Marika Spring from the scientific department of the National Gallery, Nigel Llewellyn, head of research at the Tate Gallery, Dr Andrea Hamilton, University of Edinburgh and Professor David Watkinson, University of Cardiff. 

Presentations will cover a rich variety of topics such as the use of novel digital technologies for audiences to explore and interact with sculptures and stone monuments, investigations into Europe’s hidden mural paintings and the acoustics of prehistoric caves, and assessments of the damage being caused to cultural heritage from flooding and coastal erosion.

Other programme highlights are the potential of harnessing the UK’s ‘Big Facilities’ and ‘Big Data’ capacity for monitoring and analyzing cultural heritage assets.  The final Plenary will feature the new agendas being created across Europe and internationally to address the fragility of cultural heritage, especially in view of damage from climate change, pollution, and human interaction, with speakers including Alberto de Tagle, member of Council of the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM) in Rome.

In the closing panel discussion, Philip Campbell, Nature, Rick Rylance, Chief Executive of the AHRC, and Dave Delpy, Chief Executive of the EPSRC, will debate “The Public Value of Science and Heritage Research”.

And in her Concluding Address, Professor May Cassar from University College London, and Director of the Science and Heritage Programme, will propose, “A Vision for UK Science and Heritage Research” that will outline the importance of all cultural heritage stakeholders to take concerted action to protect cultural heritage. 

The Science and Heritage Programme has brought about a Renaissance in cultural heritage research. It has consolidated the cross-disciplinary field of heritage science.  However, it remains  urgent that we secure sustainable investment in  in order to improve our understanding of cultural heritage.  Furthermore, we cannot be complacent if the UK is to maintain its leadership of this vital sector for the economy,” says Cassar. 


Click here for the draft conference programme and to register for the event