What are the Chapters and Networks?

ACHS has a variety of geographical 'chapters' and thematic 'networks' that serve as hubs for Members working in specific regions or areas of interest. These groups are encouraged to hold their own events and engage in Chapter or network-wide discussions. Some of our active Chapters and Networks are listed below (please note that this information may not yet reflect the full range of Chapters and Networks available).

Chapters are run by volunteer Coordinators who, with the assistance of the ACHS website facilities and Membership Directory, manage the Chapter's / Network's mailing list, encourage and assist in the running of Chapter or Network events, and help to recruit new Members. Chapter and Network Coordinators are offered support by the ACHS Executive Committee, and particularly the Membership and Chapters Sub-Committee.

How do I join a Chapter or Network?

Upon joining ACHS, Members are asked to indicate their location and research interests. If a Chapter or Network is already operating in the region/interest, the Member will automatically become part of that Chapter/Network. Whenever the Chapter/Network holds an event or makes an announcement, Members of the Chapter/Network will be notified by email. If Members have news or other topics they would like to put up to the Chapter/Network for consideration, they can organise this directly with the Chapter/Network Coordinator.

How do I form a Chapter or Network?

ACHS welcomes suggestions or requests for new Chapters and Networks, particularly in regions or areas of interest that have concentrations of Members not yet represented in the Chapter/Network system. This can be checked by searching the Membership Directory by Country or Interest. The ACHS Executive Committee (and Membership and Chapters Sub-Committee) will help with this process, including the organisation of a Chapter/Network mailing list through the ACHS website.

If you are interested in establishing a Chapter or Network, please submit an online enquiry via our contact page.


ACHS Chapters

Australia and New Zealand Chapter

The Australia and New Zealand Chapter was founded in mid-2012 following the inaugural ACHS Conference in Gothenburg. The Chapter has approximately 400 members, ranging across academic and professional roles in a wide variety of heritage-related fields. The Chapter’s most recent event was a Melbourne meet-up in early 2015, giving members an opportunity to network, share ideas and discuss individual research projects/interests. Many of the Chapter’s members were also present at the second ACHS Conference, held in Canberra in late 2014. 

If you are interested in joining the Australia/New Zealand Chapter, please select ‘Australia/New Zealand’ as your geographical location under your Member Profile in the ACHS Member Directory. If you are interested in planning or hosting an event within Australia or New Zealand on behalf of ACHS, please contact the Chapter Coordinators, Associate Prof. Tracy Ireland and Dr Steve Brown.

If you would like to join the Australia - New Zealand Chapter Listserv, please fill in your details in the form below. You will be diverted to another page to confirm your subscription.

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Canadian Chapter

We are pleased to announce the formation of ACHS Canada. The goal of the chapter is to foster critical approaches to heritage in and around Canada. ACHS Canada coordinators, Richard Hutchings and Marina La Salle, can be contacted at achs.ca.2016@gmail.com with questions, suggestions and announcements. Please check their website for updates.


Nigerian Chapter

The Nigerian Chapter for ACHS will officially launch on September 28th 2016, in an event at the Federal University of Technology, Akure, Ondo State. Members of ACHS in Nigeria are eager to pursue the study of heritage in all its ramifications, but especially in the area of intangible cultural heritage. The coordinator for this chapter is Charles O. Akinde, cakinde@outlook.com


Nordic Chapter

A new Nordic network for scholars and researchers working in the field of Heritage Studies.
The Association of Critical Heritage Studies (ACHS) has a variety of Chapters for members working in specific geographical regions or areas of interest. The Nordic Chapter offers an opportunity to disseminate information to scholars and researchers in Nordic countries. The initiative is built on the activities of the members. 
If you are already a member of ACHS you will automatically become a part of the Nordic Chapter if you have selected an eligible geographical location (Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Finland, Iceland or Greenland) under your Member Profile. 
Members of the Nordic Chapter will be notified about workshops, conferences, publications etcetera. To distribute information, please contact Coordinator Anita Synnestvedt, University of Gothenburg.


Norwegian Chapter (ACHS-Norway)

At a meeting in 2015 with several research environments in Norway a desire to establish a national network for heritage research was addressed. The national chapter that has been recently established at ACHS will provide information on ongoing activities, but also promote and facilitate the seminars, symposiums or workshops on heritage issues that engage researchers in Norway. Through the Norwegian Chapter of ACHS, the researchers in the heritage field can address specific issues relevant to Norwegian everyday life and politics, for example, issues on migration and notions of Norwegian national heritage or other local or national aspects of heritage in the light of Nordic and international trends. The national network will provide an opportunity for addressing issues concerning multidisciplinary research, strengthen networking between research groups in Norway and beyond, discuss future challenges for heritage, and convey and create dialogue between heritage researchers, the Norwegian management sector and the public.

For more information please contact the Chapter Coordinator, Torgrim Sneve Guttormsen (torgrim.guttormsen@niku.no), from the Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research (NIKU).


United Kingdom Chapter

The UK Chapter ACHS has had an exciting 2016 summer with events in June and July. We had our first meeting in Montreal on 7th June 2016 organised by Dr Kat Lloyd. The event was called Critical Heritage Studies in the UK: Future Directions and we had eight provocations from a range of academics from Early Careers to high profile Professors: Prof. Elizabeth Crook, Dr. Helen Graham, Prof. Rodney Harrison, Dr. Sophia Labadi, Prof. Rhiannon Mason, Prof. Mairead Nic Craith, Dr. Bryony Onciul, and Dr. Anna Woodham. These five minute talks covered a wide range of current UK issues such as: political conflict, current government initiatives, funding cuts, sustainability, intangible heritage, posthumanist approaches, postcolonialism, and climate change. Following this there was open discussion of the plan for and future of the chapter. We had a full house, with standing room only, which was an excellent start to the chapter’s activities.

On July 11th we followed up this initial momentum with a symposium at the University of Exeter’s Cornwall Campus. This brought together 23 academics, practitioners and PhD students to discuss the question: Can we have a ‘UK critical heritage’ in a globalised world with a colonial past? If so, what should be the focus and key drivers of moving critical heritage forward in the UK? We had papers on a diversity of topics including: nationalism, regionalism, archiving, intangible heritage, memory, landscape, assemblage, everyday objects, current political contexts, violent histories, commemoration, climate change, flooding, postcolonialism, and the future direction the of chapter. The day was filled with vibrant discussions and ended with an evening networking event in Falmouth.

These initial events have kick-started the chapter and we are encouraging members to host events in their areas of the UK. We will be announcing future events in our newsletters and have a national event lined up for 2017 – more details to follow soon. Keep up-to-date via our newsletter (which you will receive if you select UK as your location or interest on your ACHS membership), or twitter.

We welcome new members and ideas for, and offers to host, events. Please join through the ACHS website http://www.criticalheritagestudies.org/become-a-member-1/, contact us directly at achsukchapter@gmail.com, and follow us on twitter: @achsukchapter

If you wish to join the Chapter, please select 'United Kingdom' as your geographical location under your Member Profile in the ACHS Member Directory or contact Dr Bryony OnciulDr Katherine Lloyd or Dr Anna Woodham


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United States Chapter (ACHS-US)

The Chapter was founded with the goals of building a community in the U.S. (with an openness to all of the Americas) around the theories, methods, and issues in heritage and museums studies and practice, as well as strengthening the relationships between U.S.-based scholars and professionals and the international heritage discourse and related sectors. As one way to promote the Chapter and its main aims, it has been heavily involved with the organisation of conference sessions and panels that examine the contributions of U.S.-based scholarship and practice to the heritage discourse, and vice versa. Each of the following activities brought together different groups of participants, including those working in North and South American contexts, drawing on a range of disciplinary perspectives and, thus, helping to add interdisciplinary to the critical heritage studies movement:

  • October, 2013: The session, Connecting Public Folklore to Critical Heritage Studies: Ideas, Issues and Challenges of Heritage-related Work and Cultural Sustainability in the U.S., was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Folklore Society (Providence, Rhode Island).
  • November, 2013: The roundtable, Critical Heritage Studies and Anthropology: An International Conversation, was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Anthropological Association (Chicago, Illinois).
  • February, 2014: The panel, The Politics of Heritage: Who is Involved, Who Gains, and Who Loses? was organised as part of the Dresher Center for the Humanities Humanities Forum at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (UMBC).
  • December, 2014: The session, Critical Heritage Studies in North America: Issues, Ideas and Forward Thinking, was held at the second International Conference of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies (Canberra, Australia).
  • October, 2015: The session, The Contributions of Public Folklore Theory and Practice to the Movement for a More Critical Heritage Studies, was held at the Annual Meeting of the American Folklore Society (Long Beach, California).
  • June, 2016: Forthcoming session, Critical Heritage Studies in the Americas, at the third International ACHS Conference, as well as co-sponsorship of the opening night reception.

As a means of engaging students with critical heritage studies and practice, the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage hosted two seminars (Fall 2013, Fall 2014) for students from UMBC to discuss and debate the safeguarding of living heritage, particularly with respect to the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, most popular outside the U.S.

If you wish to join the Chapter, please select 'United States' as your geographical location under your Member Profile in the ACHS Member Directory

If you would like to join the US Chapter Listserv, please fill in your details in the form below. Please make sure to select ONLY the us-chapter list. You will be diverted to another page to confirm your subscription.

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Please direct any enquiries about the US Chapter to the Chapter Coordinator, Dr Michelle Stefano


ACHS Networks

Francophone Network

Réseau francophone d’études critiques sur le patrimoine

Le réseau francophone d’études critiques sur le patrimoine cherche à promouvoir et diffuser la recherche en langue française sur les patrimoines et les patrimonialisations, à permettre l’existence de différentes approches épistémologiques au sein d’ACHS et à rassembler les chercheurs intéressés par ces études.

La recherche en langue française sur les patrimoines a produit depuis une vingtaine d’années de nombreux travaux qui ont fait émerger la notion de « patrimonialisation ». Dans une perspective épistémologique qui favorise une approche du patrimoine par les valeurs qui lui sont attribuées, ces travaux ont constitué un changement de paradigme qui affirme la construction sociale du patrimoine et ancre les études patrimoniales dans ce cadre théorique.

Ce réseau est ouvert à toute personne intéressée par les études patrimoniales menées en français et le paradigme sur lequel elles reposent, quel que soit sa langue ou son pays d’origine.

Si vous souhaitez rejoindre ce réseau, veuillez sélectionner « francophone » dans la liste de vos intérêts de recherche dans votre profil dans le répertoire des membres d’ACHS.

Pour plus d’information, vous pouvez contacter Cyril Isnart (isnartc@gmail.com) ou Mathieu Dormaels (mat_dormaels@yahoo.com), co-responsables du réseau.

Francophone Network for critical heritage studies

The Francophone Network for Critical Heritage Studies seeks to promote and disseminate French-language research on heritage and heritagization to allow for the existence of different epistemological approaches within ACHS and to bring together researchers interested in these studies.

For the last twenty years, research in French has produced many studies that have brought to light the notion of "heritagization." In an epistemological perspective that promotes an approach to heritage through its attributed values, these works have been the source of a paradigm shift toward a vision of heritage as a social construction, and have anchored heritage studies in this theoretical framework.

This network is open to anyone interested in heritage studies in French and the paradigm on which they are based, regardless of country or language of origin.

To join the network, please select, ‘francophone’ as one of your research interests under your member profile in the ACHS Member Directory.

For more information, please contact Cyril Isnart (isnartc@gmail.com) or Mathieu Dormaels (mat_dormaels@yahoo.com), co-chairs of the network.


Intangible Heritage (ICH) Researchers Network

The Intangible Heritage (ICH) Researchers network shares information about ICH-related research, publications, conferences, courses and events with people working specifically on ICH issues. We send out a monthly newsletter. Members come from all continents and various professional backgrounds, communities and institutions or NGOs. Other languages than English are welcomed but the newsletter is mostly in English. As of end 2016, the network includes over 700 members.

The ICH network is coordinated by Harriet Deacon (UK / South Africa), and has a committee of 25 members: Richenel Ansano (Curacao), Mrinalini Atrey (India), Chiara Bortolotto (France), Nataliya Bezborodova (Canada / Ukraine), Janet Blake (Iran), Anna Catalani (UK), Marina Calvo (Spain / Algeria), Voltaire Cang (Japan), Cristina Clopot (UK / Romania), Marcela Jaramillo Contreras (Belgium / Colombia), Emily Drani (Uganda), Daniel Barrera Fernandez (Mexico), Evy Johanne Håland (Norway / Greece), Elgidius Ichumbaki (Tanzania), Aynur Kadir (Canada / China), Marc Jacobs (Belgium), Toshiyuki Kono (Japan), Kristin Kuutma (Estonia), Leah Lowthorp (USA / India), April Liu (Canada / China), Gyooho Lee (Korea), Lisa Rogers (Australia), Keletso Setlhabi (Botswana), Laurier Turgeon (Canada), Benedetta Ubertazzi (Italy).

If you wish to join the ICH Network, please select 'Intangible Heritage' as one of your Research Interests under your Member Profile in the ACHS Member Directory. Please direct any enquiries about the ICH Network to the Coordinator, Dr Harriet Deacon