University heads up the FP7 project RICHES

RICHES-Logo_WebRenewal, Innovation and Change: Heritage and European Society (RICHES) is a FP7 project led by Professor Neil Forbes. Other members of Coventry University who are involved in the project include Professor Martin Woolley and Professor Sarah Whatley of Coventry School of Art and Design and Dr Moya Kneafsey of the Business, Environment and Society faculty.

The project which will last for 30 months and brings together 10 EU partners, focuses on the relationship between institutional Cultural Heritage practices and the individual and how developing digital technologies has allowed for a recalibration of this relationship.

For many in 21st century Europe, Cultural Heritage (CH) is more about what it is than who we are. This heritage is often locked away, crumbling, in a foreign language, or about a past which to many seems of little relevance. But this is changing.

As digital technologies develop, compelling us to rethink how we do everything, the RICHES project will ask the following questions;

  • How can CH institutions renew and remake themselves?
  • How should an increasingly diverse society use CH?
  • How may the move from analogue to digital represent a shift from traditional hierarchies of CH to more fluid, decentred practices?
  • How, then, can the EU citizen, alone or as part of a community, play a vital co-creative role?
  • What are the limitations of new technologies in representing and promoting CH?
  • How can CH become closer to audiences, innovators, skilled makers, curators, artists, economic actors?
  • How can CH be a force in the new EU economy?

The RICHES interdisciplinary team will research the context of change in which European CH is transmitted, its implications for future CH practices, and the frameworks – cultural, legal, financial, educational, technical – to be put in place for the benefit of all audiences and communities in the digital age.

Find out more information about RICHES on the Coventry University website. 



Nicola Vaughan