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The Heritage Field School
October, 2021| Arnhem and surroundings, The Netherlands

In October 2021, the Future is Heritage will host the Heritage Field School with partner organisations. This event will take place in and around the city of Arnhem in the Netherlands. 

The Heritage Field School will take place in the Netherlands from the 8th-11th of October 2021. The programme will include international case studies from all over Europe. These case studies will be presented in 4 different theme tracks:

  • Heritage & Tourism

  • Heritage & Inclusion

  • Heritage & Repurposing

  • Heritage & Climate Change

Our previous theme 'Heritage & Communities', because of its strong connection to our other themes, will be firmly intertwined with all four theme tracks.

During the programme, we will explore ways to strengthen our Europe-wide network of young heritage professionals, students and volunteers, as well as to create an international exchange of knowledge, experience and ideas.

Questions and other remarks can be sent via e-mail to

An introduction to the programme | Additions will follow!

Look for the programme timetable here!


  • Fort Pannerden, Doornenburg

  • De Panoven, Zevenaar

  • Arnhem City Centre, Arnhem


Heritage & Inclusion

- The history of slavery in a postcolonial world 

By Barbara Esseboom & Kees Huntink

The history of slavery has always been subject to conflicting views and endless political debates. It raises the question: What exactly makes this gruesome chapter of history so incredibly difficult to deal with? What are the forces at play that are still very much present in a postcolonial world? And, what happens if we turn to what we feel personal, and ask ourselves: What does the history of slavery mean to me?

- Ableism and the inclusion of (physically) disabled people in the heritage sector.

By Jesper de Raad

Inclusion is the aim to embrace all people. It is about equal opportunities and the removal of intolerance. It affects all aspects of public life. Yet, how hard is it to include every unique individual? Are we able to make proper inclusive policies? This particular workshop focuses on ableism, the discrimination against people with disabilities (able-bodied). How often do we find ableism in the heritage sector and what can we do to prevent it? What provisions are already adequate and can we further improve the inclusion of people with certain needs?

In the workshop, the speaker will share his personal story of living with an ileostomy for over twelve years. How he experienced his ‘invisible’ physical disability. After the presentation, we will work in groups and focus on a specific disability. We will thoroughly investigate the venue and keep our chosen disability in mind. We can look for improvements and prepare a short presentation for the other groups and discuss what can we do better in the future. At the end of the workshop, we will have thought about various forms of (physical) disabilities and hopefully, we will have a clearer understanding of how we can include everyone in the heritage sector.


Heritage & Climate Change

- Heritage & Climate Change

By Anne-Cathérine Olbrechts, Marion Cloarec & Wouter Hinrichs

Climate change is a topic that has probably never been as prominent in society as it is today. Scientists from all over the world are warning for serious consequences if the world does not alter their way of living, and that we are at a serious turning point. A very worrying IPCC report that came out last summer is a confirmation of this. Other scientists point to grave situations that are a foreshadowing of what’s to come in Europe. From heavy rainfall and devastating flooding in North-western regions to serious forest fires in the Mediterranean.

What problems concerning climate change are facing heritage? Are societies and their heritage at risk? How can we prevent heritage, both tangible and intangible, from contributing to climate change? Does it need to be protected? Should heritage be more sustainable, and if yes, how do we do this? Who is responsible for working on possible solutions? These are some of the questions that will be raised during this session.

We are going to investigate these issues on multiple levels by looking into several case studies presented by experts. In addition to this, we are going to explore the topic in more detail by engaging in practical group discussions.

Heritage & Tourism

- Culture everywhere and for everyone

How digital technology can help to make cultural heritage more relevant, accessible, diverse and sustainable

By Aleksandra Strzelichowska


During the COVID-19 pandemic, most cultural institutions had to close their doors. Some of them successfully reached thousands of people online, others struggled with the transition to digital. Now with the world opening up, we’re in an excellent place to reflect on the ways digital technology can continue to help make cultural heritage more relevant, accessible, diverse and sustainable. We’ll discuss several issues where digital technology can play a role: sharing the collections with those (who for various reasons) might never visit your building, and reaching and engaging with various and diverse communities. We’ll also discuss how digital cultural heritage can help preserve the environment. In this interactive session, we’ll get creative, dream big and address the issues we experience in our daily work in the culture sector. Would you like to discuss the challenges and opportunities using the example of the institution you’re working for or are affiliated with? Let us know in the submission form, and we’ll make your example part of the session!

- Difficult Heritage and Digital Media: Visitors of ‘Dark Heritage Sites’

By Iris Groschek


In this workshop, we will discuss in-person visitors and digital visitors at ´Dark Heritage Sites’, their reasons to visit and their responses. What are the expectations of a visit to a concentration camp memorial? How much of a tourist attraction should a memorial site be? How are concentration camp memorials presented by visitors on social media - and how do memorials present themselves? Is there something like "good" and "bad" selfies? Can the authentic experience of an in-person visit be transferred to a digital visit to a memorial site? What kind of storytelling is needed to build a strong community? Where does the future lie for ‘Dark Heritage Sites’?

Heritage & Repurposing

- Heritage & Repurposing

By Miruna Gaman

When we think about cultural heritage, we often visualise centuries-old buildings, frequently decayed, struggling to find a space and role for themselves in contemporary society. From buildings such as castles, manors, fortresses, and industrial structures such as factories, to customs and traditions, we are surrounded by an untapped potential to enrich our daily lives.

In our contemporary society, how can we make heritage more relevant? How can we incorporate heritage elements in our society? What new meanings can we ascribe to them? How can we transform heritage from a mere object of conservation to a tool that would unite communities in the shadows of elite palaces, strengthen minority identities and make peace with certain aspects of the past?

We will try to find an answer to these questions and more in our “Heritage and repurposing” session, during which we will go back and forth from the tangible to the intangible, from the old to the new, from the micro to the macro. We will focus our lens on the Cantacuzino Estate in Florești, Prahova (Romania), where the former palace of nobleman Gheorghe Grigore Cantacuzino is now hosting workshops with children, heritage summer schools and numerous other events, such as the Night of Museums. At the same time, we will discuss how the traditional Lipovan Russian bania¸ a traditional bath-house for this minority in the Dobrogea region of Romania, is being adapted to the current socio-economic and environmental changes in the region


Walkthrough the historical parks Sonsbeek and Zypendaal in Arnhem

The most beautiful city parks in the Netherlands are Sonsbeek en Zypendaal park, located near the city centre of Arnhem. This excursion is a good combination between a nice walk and a good talk about the themes of this Fieldschool. What is visible in these historical and famous parks in terms of Tourism, Inclusion, Repurposing and Climate Change? Which hidden histories can we explore?

Else Gootjes (cultural anthropologist at Erfgoed Gelderland) will share some stories and ask you to look closely and share what you experience. Else live close by these parks and is involved in a project about the colonial past in Arnhem and its surroundings. 

Castellum Meinerswijk: the visualisation of a Roman Fortress

In the 1980s, in the south of Arnhem in a floodplain called Meinerswijk, archaeologists found the remains of a Roman fortress. This fortress was once part of the Lower Germanic Limes, the northern border of the Roman Empire, that followed the stream of the river Rhine. Because all archaeological remains are below the surface, it was a challenge to visualise this history to the local inhabitants and tourists visiting the area. An inventive visualisation, with respect for the local ecosystem, was created. During this excursion, we explore the terrain of the fortress and its visualisation plus the surrounding areas, where also some remains of the IJssellinie can be found, a Dutch defence line against the Soviet Union that was built during the cold war.

Huize Sonsbeek


The endangering effects of climate change

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Cantacuzino Estate in Florești, Prahova (Romania)

The Heritage Field School: Conclusions!

Read the conclusions of the Heritage Field School. Of every theme track of the Field School, the core conclusions made by the participants have been summarised in the different 'heritage postcards'! We will send these postcards all across Europe and its border regions soon. Want to know more about the conclusions? Take a look at the postcards down below!

 Additional information & media

 Organizers/partners of this project 

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