New book by ICCHS staff- now available!

As part of the EC-funded MeLa project on European Museums in an Age of Migrations, ICCHS researchers have published a number of books. The most recent of these is just out. It is entitled Museums, Migration and Identity in Europe and it is at the intersection between museum studies and migration studies. With ever increasing attention to migration both in political and cultural spheres, the book is a landmark contribution to a critical field of study and practice.

The imperatives surrounding museum representations of place have shifted from the late eighteenth century to today. The political significance of place itself has changed and continues to change at all scales, from local, civic, regional to national and supranational. At the same time, changes in population flows, migration patterns and demographic movement now underscore both cultural and political practice, be it in the accommodation of ‘diversity’ in cultural and social policy, scholarly explorations of hybridity or in state immigration controls. 

The book investigates the historical and contemporary relationships between museums, places and identities. It brings together contributions from international scholars, academics, practitioners from museums and public institutions, policymakers, and representatives of associations and migrant communities to explore all these issues.

Here’s what key scholars in the field think of the book:

‘This volume is a timely and welcome contribution to the growing literature on the role of museums representing migration. With essays blending theory and practice, and a focus on place and belonging, it offers insights into the politics of representation and the conceptualisation of place and identity in European museums – and beyond. It is a valuable resource to anyone working on these issues.’
Laurence Gouriévidis, Université Blaise Pascal, Clermont-Ferrand, France

‘Migration has emerged as one of the most productive areas for museum studies in recent years. This is not only because of the increase in numbers of museums about migration but also because these have the potential to raise far-reaching questions about the role of museums in contemporary society. Through its wide range of case studies from Europe, this volume makes a significant contribution to highlighting the diversity of cases and of approaches taken, as well as to how we might analyse such museums.’
Sharon Macdonald, University of York, UK.

Details of the book are available at

ICCHS students and associates interested in buying the book with a 50% discount should contact Chris Whitehead for a discount code.

World Heritage: International Day for Heritage and Sites at Housesteads Roman Fort

Join us this Saturday, 18 April, for a day of special events at Housesteads Roman Fort. There will be special talks, tours and activities, including a talk by Peter Stone.

Peter worked for UNESCO as part of the team that produce the World Heritage Education Project and kit, ‘World Heritage in Young Hands’, in the 1990s. He was also the Chair of the Hadrian’s Wall management plan committee. Peter’s talk will focus on the meaning of a World Heritage Site in the wider sense. Why are they classed with such importance and what is their importance in the wider world and in relation to the United Nations.

For more information on events of the day, please visit:

Reflecting on REF2014 and beginning to think about REF 2020


ICCHS and Media and Cultural Studies (MACS) were delighted to receive feedback from Professor Karen Ross (Northumbria University) on the REF2014 sub-panel 36: Communication, Cultural and Media Studies, Library and Information Management. ICCHS and MACS made a joint submission to this panel. Karen was member of the sub-panel.

Karen did some ‘crystal ball gazing’ and provided us with some of her thoughts about how REF2020 might shape up. For example, she suggested that the proportion of profile dedicated to impact might increase but that outputs will remain as the primary indicator. Karen also emphasised the importance of strategising now on potential impact case studies, so that we can generate the necessary supporting data in order to tell ‘good stories’ about our studies. An important part of the ‘good story’ is to create strong linkages between the underlying research and impact! Ultimately, however, it is imperative that we pay close attention to the criteria and guidance provided by HEFCE. Thanks for this Karen – it was extremely useful!

Protecting Cultural Property During War

Professor Peter Stone OBE, Head of Newcastle University’s School of Arts and Cultures, has been exploring what we tolerate as acceptable and, crucially, unacceptable practice towards protecting cultural property during war.

Video: Protecting cultural property during war


His research has investigated, within the context of jus in bello, the way in which we wage war and, by implication, the very nature of war itself. More information about Peter’s research can be found here:

Recent keynote address on cultural heritage and disaster resilient communities

Peter Stone recently gave a keynote address at a preliminary International Expert Meeting in Tokyo on ‘Cultural heritage and disaster resilient communities’. This was part of the preparation for the UN’s ‘3rd World Conference on Disaster Risk Reduction’ that Peter also attended as a member of the ICCROM Delegation in Sendai, Japan. Peter’s keynote was on ‘The Blue Shield as an important mechanism for creating and maintaining networks of heritage professionals for Disaster Risk Reduction.

For the full conference:

For the expert meeting:

DOUBLE DARE: DAY – Recording now live


On the 13th February, Emma Coffield chaired DOUBLE DARE: DAY – a sold out event discussing the ethos and practices of DIY culture with artists and musicians Graeme Durant, Andy Abbott and James Islip, at the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. The event was then followed by DOUBLE DARE: NIGHT – an evening of live performance in and around Graeme Durant’s exhibition.

You can now listen to a recording of the event, and watch the video for DOUBLE DARE: NIGHT, here:

New seminar for 11th March: The Visual Heritage of the Losing Side: Orphaned Souvenirs of the First World War

Please join us for another in our series of research seminars:

The Visual Heritage of the Losing Side: Orphaned Souvenirs of the First World War
Speaker: Prof Mike Robinson, University of Birmingham

Wednesday 11 March
1 – 2pm
Room 1.06, 18 Windsor Terrace
All welcome

mike R pic

Within the context of revived public interest in the First World War as part of the on-going centennial of the event there is much co-remembrance being performed in the collective realm. The memorials and cemeteries of the dead provide the material prompts and emotional signposts for commemoration. In addition there are countless personal objects – medals, letters etc. – that now help construct the narratives of the Great War Event. Drawing from a collection of vernacular photographs, this presentation examines images and objects from German soldiers and problematises them as dis-connected heritage of the First World War; objects with historical meaning but that exist outside of collective memory or at least a different conception of collective memory.

Short Biography – Professor Mike Robinson

Mike Robinson is Professor of Cultural Heritage at the University of Birmingham UK. He is also Director of the Ironbridge International Institute for Cultural Heritage and Trustee of the Ironbridge Gorge Museum Trust and World Heritage Site. For the past 25 years Mike’s work has spanned the broad fields of heritage and tourism and he has published numerous books, articles and chapters on the various ways in which the realms of heritage and tourism collide. Recent books include Tourism and Emotion with David Picard (Ashgate), Encounters with Popular Pasts with Helaine Silverman (Springer) and World Heritage, Tourism and Identity (Ashgate). Mike has worked with UNESCO at national and international level relating to the agendas of World Heritage, tourism and sustainable development and cultural diversity. He is a former member of the Culture Committee of the UK National Commission for UNESCO and regularly advises on policy issues. He was a Government appointed member of the UK’s Expert Panel to determine the UK’s Tentative List for World Heritage and part of the UNESCO Expert Panel to assist with the development of a Programme in World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism. He is a former Visiting Professor at the Facoltà di Lettere e Filosofia, Università degli Studi di Trento, Italy and is Visiting Professor at National Taiwan University and a Visiting Fellow at the University of Illinois. Mike has undertaken work on heritage and tourism in over 30 countries.