CfP: Boom – Crises – Heritage. King Coal and the energy revolutions after 1945

During the Industrial Revolution coal was Europe’s most important energy source for both homes and industries. At the time European coal mining created strong regional industrial identities and mentalities, as well as industrial images and imaginaries in the eyes and minds of external observers. Such identities and ideas of coal, would go on to shape industrial landscapes and communities.
Coal mining in Europe was thrown into crisis after World War II due to competition from external sources of coal, crude oil and natural gas. This incipient transformation of the energy market began accelerating in the 1970s with the emergence of new alternative forms of energy such as nuclear power. Although the regions dominated by heavy industry faced up to these challenges in various ways, they were unable to prevent deindustrialisation which resulted in pit closures in the second half of the 20th century. The remains of coal mining are, in many cases, a clearly visible presence in contemporary environments. Mining is widely commemorated through the creation of heritage, and the continuation of industrial culture and traditions.
Against this background, the Boom – Crisis – Heritage conference will address coal mining in the period after 1945. Our aim is to consider the multilayered processes of social change that were triggered by transformations within the energy market from international and comparative perspectives. Rather than restricting our scope to a study of coal mining, the conference will also cover coal’s competitors as well as the consumers and users of the various forms of energy produced. This broad sweep is designed to enable the presumed existence of unique paths of development to be confirmed and their specific regional and national characteristics to be elucidated.
We welcome a wide range of international case studies, and we are keen to represent transnational perspectives for comparative purposes on the following themes:
Theme One: investigating the economic, social and technological development of the coal mining industry and related industries
In this theme we consider contemporary responses to the upheaval within the energy sector after 1945 and analyse the transformation of the energy market from the point of view of technological, environmental, economic, corporate, social or scientific history. Our broad aim is to trace the developments associated with the energy revolution in the various industry sectors affected by transformation . This theme encompasses coal mining and competitor industries such as the petroleum industry, the nuclear industry and lignite mining as well as the consumers of energy (e.g. the steel industry, railways, private households).
There is a particular interest in papers that address the following topics and questions:
• Forecasts and expectations: to what extent did the relevant decision-makers successfully predict future trends in their own industry and in their competitor’s sectors? What methods and means were used to formulate such predictions, and did expectations or interests stand in the way of a reliable forecast?
• Response to crises: when a crisis struck or if difficulties were envisaged, the main players had a number of options for how to respond. The key issue here is the measures that were taken to prevent crises, mitigate their impact or exploit difficulties facing another industry sector.
• Periodisation: considering the economic development of coal mining, the petroleum sector and nuclear power invites a certain division of the post-war energy revolution into distinct periods. This poses the question of whether alternative divisions based on other structural criteria unrelated to the commercial performance of the individual industries are also possible. In addition, a valuable contribution can be made to the debate regarding a structural shift by looking at the energy sector. Running across these sets of issues is the question of what role is played by certain governmental and social groups of actors.
As well as studying the various decision-makers in the associations and companies, the following actors and institutions are of significant interest, as are the relationships between them:
• Supranational organisations, national governments, regional governments: the key issue here is the interests of the main players in these areas and their links to the private-sector and social actors in the relevant sectors. Another area of great interest is varying understandings at the individual (supra-)national levels in terms of assessing future developments in the energy market or conflicts over what measures to take or the support of different industry sectors.
• Trade unions: we are interested in the positions adopted by the relevant trade unions towards signs of crisis in the various industries and also in potential conflicts with employee representatives in other affected sectors at the level of national umbrella organisations such as the German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) and their role in shaping the political and social elements of the energy revolution.
• Science: in this context, it is not sufficient merely to explore the role played by science in developing new technologies for the energy industry; rather, there is also a need to scrutinise science’s influence on organisational and technical changes within the individual industries. It goes without saying that the issue of funding relevant research and the impact of science on gauging the impact of technologies or environmental problems for the individual industries is also closely linked to the role of the state.
In line with the overarching question posed by the conference, the existence of unique regional or national development stories is to be discussed based on these areas of thematic focus.
Theme Two: the tangible and intangible legacy of coal mining. We would like to put a spotlight on culturalisation and touristification processes in relict energy landscapes as well as subsequent reuse.
As regards the conference’s second area of thematic focus, papers are invited that discuss the spatial implications of the deindustrialisation of coal mining regions in order to paint a multifaceted, comparative picture of the transformation of industrialised regions of heavy industry into post-industrial landscapes. We are therefore looking for proposals that address the following issues for the second focal point of the conference:
• Policies of preservation: the discovery/invention of an industrial heritage in the late 1950s and 60s (mainly) occurred outside established institutions. The institutionalization of a preservation policy for the tangible remains of the industrial era and the set up of industrial museums in the 1970s were its first success. The most significant expression is the listing of these tangible remains as World Heritage Sites. We are looking for proposals that explore some of the key players and institutions that had a major influence on these policies of preservation, from grassroots movements and the (technical) preservation of historic monuments through to political parties and organisations. However, critical reflections on (national and international) protection regulations are also welcome.
• Discourses of Culturalisation: the preservation of buildings whose function has been removed by the process of economic and structural change requires plans to be in place for their subsequent use. Whether this has been as an industrial museum or residential accommodation or an example of managed decline, the leftover infrastructure has had to be culturalised in order to determine what form this use would take. This process of culturalised revaluation has been and continues to be underpinned by specific debates on industrial heritage. These discourses need a historical context, thus we are especially keen to receive proposals that address their dynamics and persistences as well as their actors and forms.
• Pracitices of Touristification: the International Building Exhibitions “Emscher Park” and “Fürst-Pückler-Land” are two high-profile examples from Germany of how added (tourist) value has been given to its mining heritage. Touristification of the two former coal mining regions began with the “Route of Industrial Heritage” and the “Lusatian Lake District”. The European dimension to this process is clearly reflected in the “European Route of Industrial Heritage”. We are looking for proposals that explore the transformation of the regions’ image driven by touristification as well as those that address the tensions between the authentic representation of tradition and touristification or the views of locals on this process.
• Cultures of commemoration: remembering and memories of coal mining as an economic success story have a lasting impact on regional identities and mentalities. Organisations such as mining heritage clubs, industrial museums or history workshops preserve, showcase and bring these reminiscences to life, while oral history research projects are unearthing new fragments of a collective memory. We are seeking proposals that explore which kind of topics are being remembered and which are not, and how collective memories are formed out of many different individual ones. We would also be interested in submissions that look at oral history projects and concepts from the history of companies in a methodologically reflected way.
How spaces are put to subsequent use is also to be explored in both thematic areas of the conference:
• Focus 1: the state-supported pit closures throughout the Ruhr region created empty spaces that often remained wastelands for a long time. We would welcome papers that address the role played by closure premiums in the question of subsequent use – something that frequently did not arise until a late juncture – or that compare this process with other regions’ approaches to pit closures.
• Focus 2: industrial wastelands, piles and slag heaps as well as canalised rivers dominate the characteristic landscape of the former coal mining regions. How this legacy is handled wavers between the contrasting strategies of industrial nature, ecological restoration and new energy landscapes. We are keen to receive proposals that scrutinise and contextualise the mental, environmental and economic potency of these models.
The conference is sponsored by the RAG foundation and will be organised in co-operation with the Institute of History, Ruhr-University Bochum, and the TU Bergakademie Freiberg.
The conference will be held in the city of Bochum, Germany 14- 16th March 2018, with the corresponding proceedings expected to be published promptly thereafter.
The deadline for paper abstract submissions is the 30th of August 2017.
Please send your papers per Email to Juliane Czierpka ( and Torsten Meyer ( Paper abstracts should be no more than 400 words. Please also include a a short biography of around 300 words in PDF format with your proposal. Any travel expenses incurred can be reimbursed.
For further information on the research project “From boom to crises: German coal mining after 1945” visit our website:

Lucie K. Morisset
Communicating World Heritage: 7-10 October 2017. Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage Site, UK

This conference is a special international meeting jointly organised by the Ironbridge International Institute for Cultural Heritage and World Heritage UK. The first two days 7-8 October will bring together academics from around the world to discuss research and global policy focusing on the communication of World Heritage values. From 9-10 October, practitioners will join to explore the many ways to communicate World Heritage to a variety of audiences. 

To see the programme, and book your tickets, please visit our conference website at: 

Don’t forget to take advantage of our early-bird booking discount by 31st August!

Lucie K. Morisset
Cultural Migrations: Displacement and Renewal - A Roundtable Discussion and Symposium on Immigration and Resettlement in the Buffalo/Niagara Region of New York


NIAGARA UNIVERSITY, NY – On September 8 and 9, 2017, The New York Folklore Society, a statewide non-profit arts organization supporting folklife and traditional arts, and the Castellani Art Museum of Niagara University, will host a Roundtable Discussion and Symposium to explore issues of immigration and resettlement in the context of Western New York.  This two-day participatory program includes panel discussions showcasing the area’s innovative responses to cultural sharing and accommodation, a workshop for artists, music and dance performances, exhibitions, and participatory art experiences.   Themes of the Roundtable Symposiumincludes micro-enterprise in community settings, place making through food, language, and changing neighborhood identities, responses to migration, and public and community health care.

Events will kick off on Friday, September 8, 2017 with a Curator’s talk by Lisa Catalfamo-Flores about her exhibition, El Sueño de América / The Dream of America: Separation & Sacrifice in the Lives of North Country Latino Immigrants, followed by musical and dance performances by members of Buffalo’s newcomer communities. (to be determine)

El Sueño de América / The Dream of America: Separation & Sacrifice in the Lives of North Country Latino Immigrants is a photographic exhibition that takes us from the milking parlors of surrounding counties to the cinder-block homes of Coyula, Guadalajara, Mexico, and back again. This straightforward perspective asks that we consider without bias or stereotype, the work being done, and the lives and sacrifices of the workers. Hard work and separation are underlying themes of these immigrants’ lives.

The program schedule for Saturday, September 9, 2017 begins with registration from 8:00 – 9:00 a.m. and the program begins with a traditional Thanksgiving Address by Bryan Printup of the Tuscarora Nation followed by Roundtable sessions examining place making through mechanisms of neighborhood revitalization, food, education, and language.   Panelists include Thaw Yee and Daniel Leong of the Karen Society of Buffalo, Amelia Blake of Explore and More Children’s Museum,  and Bryan Printup of the Tuscarora Nation.  Place making through Food and Language will include presentations by Elizabeth Bloom of Hartwick College, Ramin Ganesram, food journalist, and Julie Tay of the Mencius Society for the Arts.

Christina Pope, Regional Director for Welcoming America will provide a plenary address at 11:30 – 12:30, sharing Welcoming America’s three-pronged model for successfully bridging divides between immigrants and longer-term residents in “receiving” communities.  Launched in 2009, the non-profit Welcoming America has spurred a growing movement across the United States, with one in eight Americans living in a Welcoming Community. Their award-winning, social entrepreneurship model is predicated on assisting communities to create and articulate principles for inclusion.

The afternoon sessions beginning at 1:30 will focus upon Micro-Enterprise with panelists Dawne Hoeg of Stitch Buffalo; Ma Theint and Michell Holler of WEDI/West Side Bazaar; and Dr. Mirza Tihic of Syracuse University, providing a glimpse of innovative approaches to entrepreneurship in New York State.  This will be followed at 2:30 p.m. by a session on health challenges and initiatives, with participation by Laura Trolio of the New York Department of Health, Gamileh Jahil of ACCESS WNY, Michael Martin of Native American Community Services, moderated by Wilfredo Morel of Hudson River Health Care.

Participants will then be provided free transportation via the Discover Niagara Shuttle to experience art experiences in community venues.   Details to be announced.  The program will end with a closing address by Bryan Printup of the Tuscarora Nation.

To register, please visit the website of the New York Folklore Society at or call (518) 346-7008 for information.

tim winter


A one-day conference organised by the AHRC Heritage Priority Area team in association with the UK Chapter of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies

Thursday 5th October 2017 10am-5pm

The British Academy, London

The AHRC Heritage Priority Area team, in association with the UK Chapter of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies, invite paper proposals for a forthcoming one-day conference on Heritage Studies: Critical Approaches and New Directions, which will take place at the British Academy in London on Thursday 5 October 2017.

The AHRC Heritage Priority Area - led by Professor Rodney Harrison, UCL - is marking its launch with this conference, as well as a public lecture the evening before, to gain an overview of the current state of the field of heritage studies and to explore new and emerging areas of research amongst UK-based researchers.  The public lecture will be delivered by Dr Karen Salt, Co-Director of the Centre For Research in Race and Rights at the University of Nottingham. 

Further details and tickets for the Launch/Public Lecture can be found on the Eventbrite page

We will also host an evening panel discussion on the role of heritage research in policy and practice directly after the Conference.

Papers should showcase current research projects or explore emerging and future research directions in critical heritage studies, broadly understood as an interdisciplinary field of research which critically explores heritage in all of its different forms, as well as the social, political and material ‘work’ which it does in the world. We hope to attract a wide range of views and perspectives from a number of different disciplines, and thus welcome postgraduate and early career researchers, academics, practitioners, and other interested parties who are currently based in, or interested in, the UK.

An indicative list of possible themes and areas of focus are given below, but we would welcome papers which engage critically with any aspect of natural or cultural heritage or collections.

  • The relationship between ‘natural’ and ‘cultural’ heritage

  • How heritage is defined, mobilised and deployed in different contexts

  • Heritage and climate change

  • Heritage, Brexit and post-truth politics

  • Contested and emerging forms of heritage

  • Changing economies and ecologies of heritage

  • Heritage and power

  • Heritage and posthumanities

  • Heritage and big data

  • Heritage, museums and migration

  • Heritage and wellbeing

  • Heritage and identity

  • Critical engagements with the role of heritage in international development

  • Current and emerging theories and concepts in heritage and museum studies

  • New disciplinary engagements with heritage

  • Histories of heritage

  • Heritage, recycling and circular economies

  • The future of heritage and museums

Important Dates

Abstract submission deadline: Friday 11 August 2017

Acceptance Notification: Friday 18 August 2017

Registration Deadline: Friday 15 September 2017

Conference: Thursday 5 Oct 2017

Proposals for Papers should include a paper title and up to 250 word abstract.  We also ask that you indicate the following in your proposal:

  • Your name, affiliation, and area of research
  • In one sentence, what has been a fundamental obstacle/challenge in carrying out your work/research in the heritage field?
  • Would you prefer to give a 5-minute “lightning talk” or standard 15-minute paper?

Papers will be organised into plenary or parallel thematic sessions consisting of standard papers or shorter “lightning talks”. Where possible we will try to allocate your paper to the format of choice, but in some cases we may need to come back to you to discuss where your paper might best fit with the programming of the event.

Please send any queries and proposals to Hana Morel ( by Friday 11 August 2017 noon.

Please note:

The AHRC Heritage Priority Area team are also planning:

  • A Postgraduate Researcher and Early Career Heritage Researcher Workshop on Wednesday 4th October
  • The AHRC Heritage Priority Area Launch/Public Lecture on the evening of Wednesday 4th October and
  • A Workshop on Heritage and the Global Challenges Research Fund (GCRF) on Friday 6th October

Please visit our website at for further details.

Please also join us on Twitter

tim winter
Early Career Researcher-focused event on heritage studies (British Academy, London)



Wednesday 4th October 2017

10am- 5pm, followed by the AHRC Heritage Priority Area Evening Launch/Public Lecture at 6-8pm

The British Academy, London

The AHRC Heritage Priority Area Leadership ( team invites you to attend an

All-Day Workshop for Postgraduate Researchers (PGRs) and Early Career Researchers (ECRs) in Heritage Studies at the British Academy in London on Wednesday 4th October

Who Is This For?

We welcome PGRs and ECRs in Heritage Studies across the Arts and Humanities (and affiliated disciplines), from PhD candidates to postdoctoral researchers, within Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), Independent Research Organisations (IROs), and working within the heritage sector itself, to join the workshop.

We want to use this opportunity to get to know you and to understand your needs as a distinctive part of the UK Heritage Research Community.

At the workshop you will be able to discuss your own work and challenges you have faced with the AHRC Heritage Priority Area Leadership Fellow Rodney Harrison and his team,

who are waiting to hear how we can work with AHRC to help support the careers of Early Career Heritage Researchers.

The Workshop Programme

The workshop will provide an opportunity to:

  • Learn more about how the AHRC supports ECRs, especially in the period following the completion of a PhD

  • Share your research alongside other heritage researchers

  • Learn about new and emerging research topics and the broader context of heritage studies in the UK

  • Form new networks and partnerships between and across HEIs and the heritage sector

  • Develop collective research agendas

The workshop focuses on how to read yourself into grants, and insight on what research bodies are looking for when they read proposals.  It further explores the strengths and benefits of best practice, and gaps you feel are present in your ECR work.  There will be keynote presentations and breakout sessions, as well as information on funding and research career planning in Heritage Studies.

Your input to the day will help shape future research support and policy in Heritage Studies in the UK.

The deadline for applications is Friday 4 August noon. Successful applicants will be notified by Friday 14 August 2017.

Feel free to contact for further queries and to submit your application.

Please note:

Evening: The event will culminate in an Evening Launch/Public Lecture and linked networking reception which is an open event.  The lecture will be delivered by Karen Salt, Co-Director of the Centre for Research in Race and Rights at the University of Nottingham.  A scholar of race, sovereignty, power and politics, a significant portion of her work investigates how nation-states have claimed independence, demanded political recognition and fought for their continued sovereignty within a highly racialised world. Dr Salt also provides service to the wider arts, humanities and social research communities. She is an active grant reviewers and sits as a member on the Peer Review colleges for ESRC and AHRC. She will begin a 3 year appointment as a member of the AHRC Advisory Board this September. 


Following Day: The ECR workshop will also precede the conference Heritage Studies: Critical Approaches and New Directions in association with the UK Chapter of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies held on Thursday 5th October at the British Academy, which we also invite you to attend. ECRs will have the opportunity to present their work at this event.

You will need to register for both of these events separately.

For further information, please visit our website at

Please also join us on twitter @ahrcheritage

tim winter