Cost Action 18110 – Underground Built Heritage as catalyser for Community Valorisation

Knowledge repository

An UBH knowledge repository is necessary to classify different typologies and define common standards and methodologies, to cover many different aspects (i.e. archaeology, geotechnics, history, spatial and urban planning, cultural anthropology, economics, architecture, cultural tourism).

The repository will simplify UBH related surveying and dissemination practices, by supporting different stakeholders with historical and archaeological backgrounds, integrated geophysical explorations, and surveys of the earth and subsoil resource.

It will allow simplified procedures and protocols for assessing the state of the UBH conservation, within European regulations in heritage conservation (CEN/TC 346 – Conservation of cultural property), reducing technological and financial difficulties in the data collection of underground conditions.

New emerging technologies (see WG2) such as three-dimensional (3D) computer modelling and different sensing techniques, can become a primary thrust for underground heritage research and development (e.g. ‘seeing through the ground’).

By approaching and managing UBH as a commons (WIKi-community) it is possible to improve collaboration among scientists and reducing costs for sharing knowledge.

The main reference for promoting a UBH sustainable use is the “Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape (HUL)”, adopted in 2011 UNESCO’s General Conference. The HUL is aa holistic approach for historic urban landscape management, which considers heritage as a social, cultural and economic asset for the urban development and aims at “…preserving the quality of the human environment, enhancing the productive and sustainable use of urban spaces, while recognising their dynamic character, and promoting social and functional diversity” (UNESCO, 2011).

Topics such as cultural heritage, urban and rural regeneration, and sustainable tourism are strategic opportunities at neighbourhood, urban and regional levels, if developed in a context of community engagement, with more effective coalitions of ‘actors’  supported by structures that encourage collaborative relationships.

One challenge is the application of  two community management tools – such as Strategic Stakeholder Dialogue (SSD) (Van Tulder et al 2004) and Transition Management (TM) (Kemp at al. 2005),  and their integration into a new tool, the Strategic Transition Management (STM), based on local communities’ experiments and empowerment, and a multi-level strategic dialogue (e.g. Living Labs).