Ingrid Scheurmann (Dortmund): Continuity or Change Management? Historic preservation in times of climate change
The climate crisis is the challenge of our time. It affects people worldwide and does not stop at cultural heritage. Historical gardens and cultural landscapes are at risk, as much as architectural monuments and archaeological sites. Due to this development conservation issues are gaining new importance and urgency. The advice of heritage conservation is necessary as never before.
At the same time traditional selection processes and valorizations as well as the role of scientific understanding in general are increasingly questioned. Even if climate change is not the only reason of this development it is intensifying the current debate and reflection on the threatened meaning of memory in urban and cultural landscape contexts. The lecture looks at the potential of heritage conservation in times of climate change from two perspectives:
- On the one hand I will examine my subject in the context of recent professional discourses in reference to the idea of the “repair society” (Wilfried Lipp) as well as the related studies on “long-term perspectives” (Uta Hassler).
- On the other hand I will focus on the challenges of monument conservation facing the research on the anthropocene. This approach defines mankind as a “geological agent” who is responsible for the global climate crisis and the climate-specific “long-term perspectives” of his actions.
This change of view raises fundamental epistemic questions about the relationship between culture and nature, the tension between international and national value systems, objects and processes, interdisciplinary and subject-specific criteria.
One hypothesis of the lecture argues that climate change is challenging all preservation concerns of the todays society and will probably have a similar significance in the history of heritage conservation as industrialisation or the French Revolution. The “change management” as stated in the Burra Charter should be understood not only as a change in methods, but as an indication of a more comprehensive changes in values.
Prof. Dr. phil. Ingrid Scheurmann, historian, honorary professor for monument preservation at the TU Dortmund, lecturer at the TU Berlin (Master’s degree programme in historical building research and monument preservation).
2001-2008 Head of the Dehio office at the foundation Deutsche Stiftung Denkmalschutz, 2005 curator of the exhibition “Layers of time – Recognising and Preserving. Monument Preservation in Germany”.
2008-2012 Professor for heritage studies and applied building research at the TU Dresden and head of the Master’s programme “Heritage Conservation and Urban Development”.
2009-2912 Head of the sub-project “Between History and Historicisation” within the BMBF research project “Monument – Values – Dialogue”
2014-17 Head of the sub-project “Another Expansion of the Concept of Monument?” within the BMBF research project “Which Monuments of Which Modernity?”
Member of the board of the Working Group Theory and Teaching of Monument Preservation (2008-2018), of the board of the Association for the History of Berlin, of the Archeological Heritage Network of the Federal Foreign Office and of Icomos.
Due to the pandemic restrictions the lecture will take place as a video conference (Zoom):
Meeting-ID: 674 5997 0613