This one-day online workshop on 7th July 2021 will explore the role that cultural heritage can play in strengthening social inclusion and particularly the inclusion of migrants and refugees.  The workshop will approach the subject from practice and policy perspectives by presenting the results of the case studies and the policy recommendations produced as part of the EU-funded research and innovation Horizon2020 project ‘CultureLabs’.

In the first part of the workshop, participants will be taken on a journey to unpack the social and creative results of four pilot projects that used varied cultural participatory approaches with the aim to reinforce social cohesion and engage migrant and local communities.

The session will present the methods employed, challenges encountered, and outputs achieved by the projects, which were organised in three different European countries: ‘So Distant, Incredibly Close’ organised by Fondazione Sistema Toscana in Pisa, Italy; ‘Zoom In On Heritage’ organised by The Finnish Heritage Agency in Helsinki, Finland; ‘Bridging Culture Through Arts’ organised by the Social Cooperative COOSS Marche in Ancona, Italy; and ‘More in Common’ organised by People’s History Museum in Manchester, UK. 

At the end of the first part, participants will have the opportunity to discuss with the organisers through a question and answer (Q&A) session.

Building on a series of research activities and the hands-on experience gained by the pilot projects, the second part of the workshop will point at existing challenges and propose a set of policy recommendations for the more effective implementation of participatory approaches that involve hitherto under-represented or disadvantaged groups, and particularly migrant communities, through cultural heritage activities. 

The workshop will close with a round table discussion with the participation of EU-level and regional policymakers alongside experts in the field of cultural and integration policies.

Registration is free and open via Eventbrite

Programme (All times are CEST)

  • 10.00 – 10.10: Welcome from the organisers
  • 10.10 -10.20: Introduction to the CultureLabs project – Eirini Kaldeli, National Technical University of Athens
  • 10.20 -10.35: Participatory heritage for better communities: an overview of CultureLabs pilot projects – Abir Tobji, People’s History Museum
  • 10.35 – 10.55: So Distant, Incredibly Close (Pisa, Italy) – Marzia Cerrai, Fondazione Sistema Toscana
  • 10.55 – 11.15: Zoom In On Heritage (Helsinki, Finland) – Suvi Sillanpaa, The Finnish Heritage Agency
  • 11:15 – 11:30 Break
  • 11.30 – 11.50: Bridging Culture Through Arts (Ancona, Italy) – Francesca Cesaroni, the social cooperative COOSS Marche
  • 11.50 – 12.10: More in Common (Manchester, UK) – Abir Tobji, People’s History Museum
  • 12.10 – 13.15: Q&A and discussion – Moderated by Elena Silvestrini, Platoniq
  • 13.15 – 14:30: Lunch break
  • 14.30 – 15.00: Presentation of the CultureLabs policy paper – Wolfgang Bosswick, Senior Researcher, University of Bamberg
  • 15.00 – 16.00: Policy paper round-table discussion – Chaired by Eirini Kaldeli, National Technical University of Athens

comics from so distant. incredibly close

The stories emerged during the CultureLabs pilot project organised in Pisa, “So Distant. Incredibly Close“, were converted in web-comics and finally they found an appropriate web space thanks to the Sistema Musale di Ateneo of Pisa and Fondazione Sistema Toscana, after a two-year long creative and co-participation process.

The pilot involved people of different ages, coming from various countries of the world and resident in Pisa for more or less time. After the visits to the museums, each person produced a story about their past and to the traditions of their country of origin.

The collected storie were then transcribed and turned into comic for the web by the students of the Liceo Artistico Russoli in Pisa and the cartoonist Alice Milani.
The non-profit association “ORISS” and the cultural association “Casa della Donna” collaborated in the project, providing added value and cultural mediation.

This journey produced nine unique comic strips: nine stories that start from a remote time and touch the antipodes of the Earth, even reaching the Moon: from the sacred crocodiles of Gambia to the legends of Brazil, from the cuisine of Nigeria to nocturnal escapes on a frozen river in China, from Persian myths to the sound of Burkina Faso’s tam tam.

So Distant.Incredibly Close enabled all the participants to take a double journey: one to the heritage preserved in the museums and the other to the places, traditions, legends and customs of distant countries.

Each comic is accompanied by the original story from which it is taken. Each comic is also part of a true story.

In February, CultureLabs hosted a free one-day symposium entitled: “Cultural heritage and social impact: Digital technologies for social inclusion and participation.” The free event took place online and attracted over 100 attendees from across the globe. 

Organised by consortium partners Danilo Giglitto, Eleanor Lockley (Sheffield Hallam University); Eirini Kaldeli (ICCS, National Technical University of Athens), and Luigina Ciolfi (University College Cork and Sheffield Hallam University), the symposium featured twelve presentations by academics, researchers, and practitioners exploring how digital technologies can support institutions to become more connected and open to different communities in CH-related settings, and considered the challenges and opportunities brought forward by digital interactions in different settings. 

The videos for the event are now available and are divided into four topics:   

Engagement of Disadvantaged and Marginalised Communities:

  • Gillian Robinson  Conflict Textiles Live Collection
  • Vanessa Cesário MEMories and EXperiences for inclusive digital storytelling (MEMEX)
  • Tanis Grandison Unpacking Meaning of Place Through Creative Technology

The first set of presentations showcased cultural heritage work aimed at people who are at risk of social exclusion. Robinson et al. (Ulster University) show how existing collections of textiles can be used for people to tell their stories of conflicts but furthermore how examples of social inclusion have been achieved through online dissemination during Covid. Grandison (Edinburgh Napier University) describes a co-produced Digi-Mapping project with an Edinburgh arts organisation with primary school children from multiple deprived areas. Whilst Cesário (Interactive Technologies Institute – LARSyS) illustrates examples from the  MEMEX project to promote social cohesion through collaborative, heritage-ICT related tools.

Inclusion and Cultural Heritage Institutions:

  • Lara Perry Digital prospects for inclusive civic museums
  • Elisa Bonacini The #iziTRAVELSicilia participatory project
  • Jonas Van Mulder ANGLES – Engaging Multiple Perspectives for Reapproaching and Reappropriating Colonial Audio-Visual Archives Preserved at KU Leuven

The second set of works focus around digital cultural heritage for institutions. Perry (University of Brighton) provides an overview of her work called Digital Prospects for Inclusive Civic Museums UK-US collaboration, which explores digital interfaces for smaller museums. Whilst Bonacini (Universidad de Cordoba) details the #iziTRAVELSicilia project, which focuses upon participatory strategies and co-production of museum audio-guides and city audio-tours published within a large regional-scale process. Van Mulder et al. (KU Leuven) present ANGLES, which aims to create space for collaborative reflection about the future of colonial archives held at KU Leuven.

Digital Innovation in Cultural Heritage Practices:

  • Daniel J. Finnegan Game and Play: A Gateway to the Past?
  • Alan Dix Democratising Digitisation: Empowering Culture From the Community Up
  • Vendela Grundell Gachoud Metadata as a Diversity Tool: Sámi Traces in Institutional Archives Online

The third theme illustrates examples of digital innovation in relation to their impact upon cultural heritage practices.  Finnegan et al. (Cardiff University / Echo Games) provide an overview of three case studies which illustrate how games can encourage strangers, young and old, to play together and reflect on cultural heritage (e.g. past events) through roleplay and adversarial engagement. Whilst Dix et al. (Swansea University) describe new work focused on local musical society archives in Yorkshire and Belfast and also the locally-based audience communities at university venues in York and Illinois which highlights new modes of scholarship rooted in models of social capital and common ownership. Complimenting these, Gachoud (Stockholm University) talks about ‘The Politics of Metadata’ which ex­plores how metadata affects cultural heritage institutions’ image collections online; using Sami images from the Swedish National Heritage Board, the study focuses on how metadata affects diversity within a frame­work of demo­cracy and identity formation. 

Cultural and Digital Heritage Educational opportunities

  • Sally McHugh Learningful Play: Exploring the design of technology, learning and play to enhance children’s engagement with cultural heritage in schools and Museums
  • Sara Eloy Inclusive E-Learning to Understand Collective Memories and Identify New Uses of African Plantations Heritage (Recording not available) 
  • Betül Gaye Dinç Interacting with Museum Content Through Picturebooks: A Study of Children’s Engagement with Orientalist Paintings in Pera Museum, Istanbul

The final theme looks at the educational opportunities for digital cultural heritage. McHugh (National University of Ireland, Galway) presents a Technology-enhanced Cultural Heritage Education (TECHe) learning model to improve children’s engagement with their local heritage and places. Dinç et al. (Koç University) follows by showcasing their study which investigates the possibilities of an interactive picturebook prototype in fostering children’s exposure to artworks featured in a permanent exhibit presenting historic and cultural content.

The event also featured a keynote talk by Dr Jenny Kidd of Cardiff University, entitled ‘Museums, Social Media and Participation in Times of Crisis’. Kidd presents an analysis of the Twitter data shared across two hash tags – #CultureinQuarentine and #Museumathome – to better understand the parameters of engagement between the public and cultural institutions during the crisis caused by the global Covid-19 pandemic.  
Watch the recorded presentations here or read the list of abstracts.

A one-day online symposium

Registration is open!

 

Date: 24 February 2021

Venue: Online

Organisers: Danilo Giglitto, Eleanor Lockley (Sheffield Hallam University); Eirini Kaldeli (ICCS, National Technical University of Athens); Luigina Ciolfi (University College Cork and Sheffield Hallam University)

Registration is open and free: Link to register

 

Themes and Background

Cultural heritage is no longer seen solely as a safeguarding effort or an educational outlet but also as a form of civic and cultural representation and engagement that can contribute to social cohesion. The EU-funded collaborative project “CultureLabs” investigates and proposes the use of novel methodologies and digital tools for facilitating the access to Cultural Heritage through tailor-made novel experiences, creative reuse, enrichment and co-creation. As part of CultureLabs, this one-day symposium will discuss how digital ecosystems shape the dynamics between institutions (including museums and academic institutions) and communities, leading to new models of collaboration and interaction around heritage and culture.

The event will feature a keynote talk by Dr Jenny Kidd of Cardiff University, exploring museums, social media, and participation during the crisis caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. After an open submission process, we have also selected 12 short presentations from academics, researchers, and practitioners exploring how digital technologies can support institutions to become more connected and open to different communities, and consider the challenges and opportunities brought forward by digital interactions in different settings. 

 

Outline Symposium Programme (All times are GMT)

10:00-10:10: WelcomeDanilo Giglitto

10:10-10:25: CultureLabs: Recipes for Social InnovationEirini Kaldeli

10:25-10:30: Culture and Cultural Heritage in the Research and Innovation Policy of the European CommissionAndrea Grisorio (European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research and Innovation)

10:25-10:30: Keynote Presentation: Museums, Social Media, and Participation in a Time of Crisis –  Jenny Kidd (Cardiff University)

10:50-11:00: Q&A

 

11:10-12:00: Short presentations: PART 1

  • Conflict Textiles Live Collection – Gillian Robinson, Roberta Bacic, Breege Doherty, Esther Alleyne
  • MEMories and EXperiences for Inclusive Digital Storytelling (MEMEX)Vanessa CesárioMercedes Giovinazzo, Corinne Szteinsznaider
  • Digi-Mapping: Unpacking Meaning of Place Through Creative TechnologyTanis Grandison, Tom Flint, Kirstie Jamieson
  • Short discussion – Chaired by Danilo Giglitto
  • Digital Prospects for Inclusive Civic MuseumsLara Perry
  • The #iziTRAVELSicilia Participatory ProjectElisa Bonacini
  • ANGLES: Engaging Multiple Perspectives for Reapproaching and Reappropriating Colonial Audio-Visual Archives Preserved at KU LeuvenJonas Van Mulder, Sofie Taes, Fred Truyen, Kim Christiaens
  • Short discussion – Chaired by Luigina Ciolfi

 

12:00-13:30: Lunch break

 

13:30-14:20: Short presentations: PART 2

  • Game and Play: A Gateway to the Past? – Daniel J. Finnegan, Daniela De Angeli, Lee Scott
  • Democratising Digitisation: Empowering Culture From the Community UpAlan Dix, Rachel Cowgill, J. Stephen Downie, Christina Bashford, Mike Twidale, Maureen Reagan, Simon McVeigh, Rupert Ridgwell
  • Metadata as a Diversity Tool: Sámi Traces in Institutional Archives OnlineVendela Grundell Gachoud, Karin Hansson
  • Short discussion – Chaired by Eleanor Lockley
  • Learningful Play: Exploring the Design of Technology, Learning and Play to Enhance Children’s Engagement with Cultural Heritage in Schools and MuseumsSally McHugh, Tony Hall, Fiona Concannon
  • Inclusive E-Learning to Understand Collective Memories and Identify New Uses of African Plantations HeritageSara Eloy, Stefania Stellacci
  • Interacting with Museum Content Through Picturebooks: A Study of Children’s Engagement with Orientalist Paintings in Pera Museum, IstanbulBetül Gaye Dinç, Özge Subaşı, Ilgım Veryeri Alaca
  • Short discussion – Chaired by Eirini Kaldeli

14:20-15:00: Roundtable discussion moderated by organisers

15:00-15:30: Closing remarks and future plans

 

About the Keynote Speaker: Dr Jenny Kidd is a Reader in the School of Journalism, Media and Culture at Cardiff University (UK). She has written extensively on digital cultural heritage and participatory media, including in her 2014 book Museums in the New Mediascape: Transmedia, Participation, Ethics. Jenny is Co-Investigator for the AHRC’s Policy and Evidence Centre, and on a project exploring the impacts of Covid-19 on the UK cultural sector being led by the Centre for Cultural Value.

 

For queries, please contact D.Giglitto@shu.ac.uk or LCiolfi@ucc.ie 

A one-day online symposium

Date: 24 February 2021

Venue: Online

Organisers: Danilo Giglitto, Eleanor Lockley (Sheffield Hallam University); Eirini Kaldeli (ICCS, National Technical University of Athens); Luigina Ciolfi (University College Cork and Sheffield Hallam University)

Themes and Background

Cultural heritage is no longer seen solely as a safeguarding effort or an educational outlet but also as a form of civic and cultural representation and engagement that can contribute to social cohesion. The EU-funded collaborative project “CultureLabs” investigates and proposes the use of novel methodologies and digital tools for facilitating the access to Cultural Heritage through tailor-made novel experiences, creative reuse, enrichment and co-creation. As part of CultureLabs, this one-day symposium will discuss how digital ecosystems shape the dynamics between institutions (including museums and academic institutions) and communities, leading to new models of collaboration and interaction around heritage and culture.

We invite proposals from academics, researchers and practitioners who are interested in joining the organisers and an invited keynote speaker in discussing and exploring how digital technologies can support institutions to become more connected and open to different communities, and consider the challenges and opportunities brought forward by digital interactions in different settings. 

We welcome proposals on topics including – but not limited to:

  • Different approaches and digital tools that can contribute to both making cultural institutions more inclusive and encouraging citizens and communities to actively mould the way cultural heritage is presented and understood.  
  • Examples of projects or initiatives engaging communities at risk of exclusion, such as migrants and refugees, as well as other groups with distinct needs and characteristics that are often disconnected from institutional cultural heritage, such as youth communities, 
  • Insights on the practical dimension of how digital tools and interactions can be designed and used by cultural heritage practitioners, researchers, citizens, and communities 
  • Ethical considerations and reflections on the complex transformative processes these practices bring about, and the ways in which they influence the discourse around heritage, culture, and society.

Participation in the symposium will be free of charge but registration will be required. Full details will be disseminated in due course.

Submission Instructions

People interested in presenting at the symposium should submit a single PDF document including the following info:

  1. Their Name(s) and Affiliation(s)
  2. Contact email address
  3. Abstract of proposed presentation (300 words max)
  4. Short Bio (250 words max)
  5. A list of up to 5 relevant links (these can be links to a project, cultural institution, community organisation, etc.)

Submissions should be emailed to d.giglitto@shu.ac.uk no later than the 8th of January 2021.

All submissions will be lightly peer-reviewed by the organising committee, who will select a subset for inclusion in the programme of presentations and roundtable discussion. Please note that the presentations will be short to allow greater time for discussion.

Timeline

  • Deadline for submissions: 8th January 2021
  • Notification of acceptance: 26th January 2021
  • Event: 24th February 2021

Outline Symposium Programme

10:00-10:10: Welcome from the Organisers

10:10-10:30: CultureLabs – Recipes for Social Innovation

10:30-10:50: Keynote Speaker: Dr. Jenny Kidd

10:50-11:00: Q&A

11:10-12:00: Short presentations

12:00-13:30: Lunch break

13:30-14:15: Short presentations

14:20-15:00 Roundtable discussion moderated by organisers

15:30: Closing and future plans

Follow-up Plans:

All submissions featured in the programme will be shared with registered attendees ahead of the event.

After the event, we will develop the symposium talks into a follow-up publication, for which presenters will be invited to submit article versions of their contributions. Details will be communicated in due course.

For queries, please contact D.Giglitto@shu.ac.uk or LCiolfi@ucc.ie*

*After the event, we will develop the symposium talks into a follow-up publication, for which presenters will be invited to submit article versions of their contributions. Details will be communicated in due course.

 

From 6th to 12th of December 2020, CultureLabs and its pilots will be showcased during the 3rd Annual Citizen Engagement and Deliberative Democracy Festival (3rd CEDD Festival)

It is an online appointment organised by the European Commission, devoted to analysing how democracy is changing and how citizens can participate in this change.

And again, this festival will address the question, how can we ensure that physical distance does not prevent the public from engaging, co-creating, or deliberating policies that affect them? How can we make the best use of online tools?

CultureLabs project and its 4 pilots have been selected to be part of the virtual exhibition: a selection of videos that showcase citizen engagement projects around Europe. CultureLabs and its pilots are part of these projects focused on ideas of deliberation or co-creation, which span art, science, and technology.

As part of the exhibition, the 3rd CEDD festival will award the project that incorporates the most innovative social approach to citizen engagement with a social innovation prize that will be announced on the 11th.

The agenda and the registration form are available HERE.

We are happy to announce that the CultureLabs digital platform is now available and ready-to-use! 

If you are interested in participatory projects that leverage Cultural Heritage for the inclusion and empowerment of communities CultureLabs is what suits you: a collaborative and free space where you can find helpful material and reuse it according to your needs. 

  • Discover material about past projects, methodologies, tools, and other resources that can help you in creating your own participatory project.
  • Share your own experiences of participatory projects and let other users be inspired by your expertise.
  • Upload supporting material that can be useful by other organisations who may find it helpful in their own venture.
  • Structure your initial idea for a participatory project in the form of a recipe? Following the template provided by the platform. 
  • Collaborate with others in order to gradually elaborate and improve your project via feedback exchange and teamediting. 
  • Reuse existing good practices and resources made available by other organisations and adapt them to your own needs.
  • Expand your network and find collaborators for your project.

 

The CultureLabs digital platform is designed for: 

  • Cultural Heritage Institutions who are interested in strengthening their social role 
  • Civil Society Organisations who are working for the integration and empowerment of disadvantaged communities
  • Researchers interested in studying participatory approaches
  • Public Administrations who are seeking to address challenges related to societal cohesion and  migrant and refugee integration
  • Community members who wish to raise awareness about grassroots heritage and turn their ideas into projects

CultureLabs is also the right place for any community member and individual who wishes to contribute with their own ideas for a project!

 

Subscribe for free to https://recipes.culture-labs.eu/ and start to use it!

CultureLabs pilot in Ancona: video feddback from the participants

The activities of CultureLabs project have been suspended due to the global health emergency of Covid19 but the needs, the challenges as well as the enthusiasm of the participants are still the same.

For this reason, we collected feedback from participants of “Bridging Culture through Arts“, our pilot in Ancona, as a wish to restart soon to cook up a more open and inclusive world!

 

The video is in Italian, the language that non-native speakers were practicing to get social involved. It collects the self-made videos of some of the participants, the reasons why they decided to participate at our pilot activities, their wishes and their expectations.

Benefits from "More in Common" pilot - CultureLabs

The way in which people continue to be inspired by Jo Cox to bring people together across divides more than three years after she was killed is testimony to the fact that those values are enduring and unshakeable.

Inspired by her ethos, PHM launched More in Common pilot activity as an opportunity to work with the residents of Greater Manchester and think about what it means to live in a multicultural Britain today and how Brexit has changed that dynamic and feeling in the country. Together, we will be gathering to celebrate diversity, challenge racism and xenophobia – removing barriers brick by brick. This project is an attempt to help bring communities together in the spirit of her ‘more in common’ values of unity, tolerance and respect. We hope to inspire more people to join us to carry Jo’s banner of love as now more than ever, Britain needs to embrace, celebrate and find strength in its diversity.

This is clearly demonstrated by participants’ motivation to sign up for this project:

“I had always thought that what is most special about this country is the way everybody can enjoy living together irrespective of where they are from. This, unfortunately, have been changing over the past few years and I think it is even more important in these times that people come together and spend time getting to know each other”.

Benefits from Helsinki pilot - CultureLabs

Zoom In On Heritage, by using pictures, brings the benefit of creating a comfortable and easy space where the participants can express their values, identities and thoughts in a group bringing the participants also to a more equal level in terms of language. The coordinators had a sense that women took part in an increased level of engagement or somehow opened in a different way.

The activities encouraged participants to make decisions on their own and to take the ownership of the project. For some of the participants this kind of decision-making power has been very pleased and they started voicing their own suggestions and wishes in terms of the project and the activities we could do.

One of the benefits has also been to visit the Worker’s Housing Museum and Picture Collections since the target groups, especially the women, do not usually get many opportunities to do such visits.