‘How should decisions about heritage be made?’ is an unusual research project because, when we started, we didn’t exactly know what it was about! This is because a team of people from lots of different types of organisations, groups and communities worked together in early 2013 to work together to design the research questions and its methods. In our Phase 2 research (beginning in July 2013) we will to root our bigger concerns with democracy and heritage in specific places and contexts by mapping who makes decisions, when and where. Our methodology, inspired by systemic action research approaches, uses a parallel set of three inquiry strands each oriented to heritage ‘as a system’ in different ways: ‘from within’ (using live projects to trace decision making), ‘experimenting’ (through a co-collecting project at the Science Museum) and ‘interrogating’ (publically investigating the effects of ‘heritage’ in York).
Our Team includes museums, other heritage organisations and local groups, funders and academics/researchers (for a full list).
Our Co-design project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council as part of their Connected Communities Programme and is a Co-Design Development Grant.