IE Conference 2023: Registrations are now open!

Alma VII Square (Image: Helena Vičič)


Join us in Romania on 12-15 May for our theme, ‘Creating learning landscapes through heritage interpretation’.

It is time to get ready for a long-awaited Interpret Europe live conference – a diverse, inspirational, and impactful gathering of heritage experts from all over Europe and beyond, with an exciting range of learning and networking opportunities. The conference theme, ‘Creating learning landscapes through heritage interpretation’, has been inspired by Interpret Europe’s partnership with UNESCO’s Regional Bureau for Science and Culture in Venice. We’ll explore how value-based interpretation can pave the ground for heritage sites to play a key role in regional development towards inclusive, participatory and reflective landscapes.

Venue

The Historic Centre of Sighișoara World Heritage Site provides the ideal setting for discussing such topics at our 2023 conference. The oldest inhabited mediaeval citadel in Europe, with its multi-ethnic atmosphere, will be our host and an ideal springboard for our study visits into the heart of the mythical ‘land beyond the forests’ – Transylvania. 

Programme 

The conference starts on Friday 12 May with a guided walk around Sighisoara and the conference opening in the evening. Renowned speakers will open each day with a keynote and contribute to the conference theme from different perspectives. We will welcome Graham Black, Nottingham Trent University (UK) and Irena Lazar, Head of the UNESCO Chair for Interpretation and Education for Enhancing Integrated Heritage Approaches (Slovenia), and a representative of the Global Geoparks Network (TBC).  For the duration of the conference, you will be able to choose between parallel presentations and workshops that have been previously peer reviewed, bringing expertise from various fields of heritage and sharing experiences from various European countries.

Study visits 

We will embark on study visits on Sunday, so get ready for a full day excursion of your choice, combining natural and cultural heritage around UNESCO designated sites in Transylvania, as well as talking with site managers and local NGOs about heritage interpretation management.

Here is a taste of the sites you can find described in detail in the conference programme: The village of Saschiz, part of the World Heritage Site Villages with fortified churches in Transylvania. Cobor Biodiversity Farm, a great example of how biodiversity conservation, traditional architecture and a profitable business can go hand in hand. Carpaterra Geopark, the land of past and present volcanoes. Breite Oak Forest, the largest grassland plateau in Europe in combination with Biertan and Mălâncrav, where old and new is reconciled in workshops that brought back to life once-thriving crafts: locksmithery, masonry, joinery and metalworking, brick and tile making, painting, stucco work and carving, linen making and basket weaving. 

You will be asked to select your preferred study visits during registration. Make sure you take a good look at the study visit descriptions and chose your first as well as a second preferred choice.

Pre- and post-conference tours

Don’t forget to check our pre-conference tour to Hateg Country UNESCO Global Geopark and the post-conference tour to Bran Castle and the Black Church, which you can align with your arrival and departure into the country, especially if you first travel to Sibiu.  Check the tours’ programme and practical information when planning your travel. 

Registrations & scholarships

Registration for the IE Conference 2023 opens on 20 December. You can register for the conference by completing the online form on the conference website. In case you wish to attend the conference but are short of funds, you’ll be pleased to know that we’re happy to offer the chance to cover part of your conference costs. IE grants five scholarships of €200. Check the details regarding registration and scholarship at:

https://www.interpreteuropeconference.net/registration/ 

Call for papers

Are you ready to share your experiences with the heritage interpretation community? We’d love to hear about your projects. The deadline for submitting your abstract for peer review is 15 February 2023, so why not complete and submit it over the holidays? 

IE conferences gather heritage professionals and interpretive consultants from all over the world to invite exchange on theory and practice of contemporary interpretive approaches. They inspire heritage sites, parks, monuments and museums to engage people with heritage. In Sighișoara, we would like to develop an exchange on the role heritage properties can play as initiators and co-creators of learning landscapes through interpretation, bringing visitors and residents together to cope with global challenges by supporting local developments.

In relation to our theme, ‘Creating learning landscapes through heritage interpretation’

UNESCO recently defined requirements for value-based heritage interpretation to foster peace and sustainability. Participation, co-creation and inclusion became buzz words, also in IE’s cooperation with UNESCO. But how can all those concepts be grounded in practice? 

Questions relating to proposals

When preparing your proposal for either a presentation or workshop at the conference, please consider questions such as:

  • How can heritage properties play a key role in shaping learning landscapes in which locals and visitors learn from the past for the future? What good practice examples are there?
  • What challenging attitudes or other obstacles around heritage sites discourage dialogue about critical subjects? How can they be overcome?
  • How can human values that encourage sustainable attitudes and behaviour be triggered by heritage experiences?
  • How can whole interpretive experiences at heritage sites (including physical, intellectual, emotional, spiritual and social components) complement distant and formal learning?
  • While heritage interpretation can help people to grow as people, reflect upon their learning experiences and remember them, can it be proven that this also has an impact on fostering more sustainable and inclusive societies?

We also welcome papers on the theory and practice of heritage interpretation as a discipline.

You can submit your proposal via the online template here:

www.interpreteuropeconference.net/call-for-papers. You will find all information about requirements for the abstract there.

The 2023 conference is organised in partnership with AICI Architecture Studio. For general enquiries about conference registration or submitting your proposal, please contact the events team at: [email protected]

We are looking forward to welcoming you to Sighișoara.

Tea Štifanić is the IE Events Coordinator. She can be contacted at: [email protected]

To cite this article: Štifanić, Tea (2022) ‘IE Conference 2023: Registrations are now open!’ in Interpret Europe Newsletter 4-2022, pg.29-31

Available online: https://interpret-europe.net/wp-content/uploads/2022/12/Newsletter-2022_4-winter.pdf

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