Materiality, Authenticity and Value

Dryburgh Abbey Font

The full title of this project is Materiality, Authenticity and Value in the historic environment: a study of the effects of material transformation and scientific intervention. It was a one year study (2013) funded by the UK’s Arts and Humanities Research Council, under the Science and Heritage call. The research team was PI John Hughes at the University of the West of Scotland, and CIs Sian Jones at Manchester, Tom Yarrow at Durham. .

In the project, we looked at the role of heritage science in the process of conservation, focusing specifically on whether and how such interventions uphold or reconfigure the values and meanings attached to historic monuments. Based in the department of Engineering, with the Geologist PI, I was the post doctoral research associate on the project. I conducted fieldwork at historic buildings, labs and archives across the south of Scotland.

A project workshop report and elaboration of the research is available through the University of the West of Scotland’s site here, and a key publication from the project was published in the Journal of Cultural Heritage and is available Open Access here.

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