The book I have edited with my meSch project colleagues Areti Damala, Eva Hornecker, Monika Lechner and Laura Maye has now been published by Routledge. “Cultural Heritage Communities: Technologies and Challenges” collects ideas from different disciplines, cultures, methods and goals, to inspire scholars and practitioners involved in community heritage projects.
Cultural heritage communities of interest have increasingly expanded from cultural heritage professionals to volunteers, special interest groups and independent citizen-led initiative groups. Digital technology has also increasingly impacted cultural heritage by affording novel experiences of it – it features in a number of activities for all the aforementioned groups, as well as acting as support for visitors to cultural heritage centres. With different degrees of formality and training, these communities are increasingly defining and taking ownership of what is of value to them, thus reconfiguring the care, communication, interpretation and validation of heritage. Digital technology has played a crucial role in this transformative process.
In a fully international context, cultural heritage practitioners, community champions and academics from different fields of study have contributed to the book. Each chapter brings to the fore the multiple relationships between heritage, communities and technologies as a focus of study and reflection in an inclusive way. Contributions touch upon present and future opportunities for technology, as well as participatory design processes with different stakeholders.