Europa Nostra issues a Statement on the future of EU-funded heritage research

As the Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe, Europa Nostra has issued a Statement outlining its position, priorities and expectations on EU-funded research related to cultural heritage, in the context of the future EU Programme for Research and Innovation ‘Horizon Europe’ (2021-2027).

Europa Nostra’s Statement on the future of EU-funded heritage-related research is timely, at a moment when the legislation underpinning the upcoming Horizon Europe programme is being finalised. The Statement aims at contributing to, and feeding into the public discussions on the strategic direction for cultural heritage research within the most ambitious EU programme for research and innovation ever.

Horizon Europe is the successor of Horizon 2020, the EU programme for Research and Innovation currently in place (2014 – 2020). Through Horizon 2020, the EU has largely supported research and innovation in the cultural heritage field. As an illustration, in just one year, and on the occasion of the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018, Horizon 2020 invested circa EUR 66 million in heritage-related research and innovation projects (through seven calls for proposals).

There is a social, political and scientific demand to continue and indeed increase EU funding for heritage-related research within the successive programme Horizon Europe. Through its Statement, Europa Nostra puts forward 9 recommendations for Horizon Europe to ensure a meaningful contribution to heritage-related research, bringing tangible benefits first and foremost to communities and society as a whole.

Among other recommendations in this Statement, Europa Nostra stresses the need for Horizon Europe to build upon the policy momentum initiated by the European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 and to contribute to the implementation of the first-ever European Framework for Action on Cultural Heritage and the Berlin Call to Action “Cultural Heritage for the Future of Europe”.

Other key recommendations include overcoming thematic fragmentation of heritage research policy and acknowledging the role of civil society stakeholders as important contributors to heritage-related research, making it relevant for Europe and its citizens. Read the complete Statement here.

The Statement is the outcome of the work carried out by Europa Nostra prior, during and after its participation in several brainstorming and high-level meetings, upon invitation by the European Commission, to discuss the future European research agenda in the field of cultural heritage. The Statement also reflects a consultation carried out by Europa Nostra with relevant stakeholders and members of its network, with the aim of better capturing the needs and expectations of the research and heritage communities. The Statement was approved and endorsed by Europa Nostra’s board during at its meeting held on 26 March 2019 in Vienna.

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