GCRF Development Award: Heritage Borders of Engagement Network (ENGAGE)

Lead Research Organisation: Nottingham Trent University
Department Name: Sch of Archit Design and Built Env

Abstract

The ENGAGE Network aims to develop an evidence-based understanding of the role and potential of heritage sites, practices and communities in developing long-term sustainable and inclusive peace across conflict-prone border regions through creative modes of cultural productions, education, tourism, interdependent economy and social justice. Designed around the notion of 'humanitarian heritage' as common endeavour of humanity that is indiscriminate about human race, culture, ethnicity or religion, the Network anticipates developing transferable models and forums of 'humanitarian heritage partnerships' as a long-term reverse mechanism for conflict prevention and counter-terrorism strategy in vulnerable and neglected border regions. It will advance discourse and policy on cultural heritage as a source of economic prosperity,transcending political and cultural barriers. It will investigate strategies to counter cultural conflict rhetoric through inclusive education, heritage-centred growth, rural development and infrastructures of peace. The purpose of ENGAGE Network is to re-contextualise heritage to mobilise discussion regarding its common elements - as meeting places, trading points, sites of shared enjoyment - and as a catalyst for much needed economic and social development and Social Justice. The Network's research programme is designed around five themes: Infrastructures and Models of Regional Partnerships for Inclusive Growth; Sustainable Heritage of Hospitality Across Borders; Creative Art, Craft and Cultural Co-production; Heritage Education for Inclusiveness and Diversity; and Navigating Narratives of Displacement, Slavery and Shared Grievances in Border Conflicts.

The ENGAGE Network will work within 2 areas - The Middle East and North Africa (Egypt, Libya, Tunisia, Jordan, Lebanon, Palestine, Iraq and Iran) and Southern Asia (including Bangladesh, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Pakistan, and India). These regions/countries have been chosen due to sustained and recurring armed, cultural, or ideological conflicts. The Network activities will operate via 5 Regional Partnership Hubs in the designated areas: Tataouine (Tunisia), Baghdad-Erbil (Iraq/ Kurdistan), Umm-Qais (Jordan); Jaffna (Sri Lanka); and the Greater Lumbini Area (Nepal), reaching out to communities in all beneficiary countries through the Network capacity-building funded projects programme.

This GCRF Development Award project will take the form of a pilot study to test the ENGAGE Network's research framework and methodology through the development of 3 of the 5 the proposed Regional Research Partnership Hubs - Iraq, Tunisia and Southern Nepal. The project will develop and increase links and knowledge transfer between the ENGAGE Network's international partners, PI and UK and overseas co-investigators. The award will also enable 3 collaborative workshops with stakeholders, research partners and community representatives from the regions. These workshops will explore research methodologies, approaches and challenges to the models of partnership hubs. They will take place in Tataouine (Tunisia), Baghdad-Erbil (Iraq/ Kurdistan), and the Greater Lumbini Area (Nepal). The workshops are designed to operate a number of engagements, meetings and focus group interviews to map local and regional perspectives in the co-design and co-production of the ENGAGE Network's research agenda, methodology and delivery plan. This Development Award will enable and facilitate collaborative research with partners and stakeholders in the global south to investigate strategies to counter cultural conflict rhetoric through inclusive education, heritage-centred growth, rural development and infrastructures of peace. The multi-disciplinary team includes specialists from politics, social sciences, human rights, heritage, tourism, archaeology, architecture, economics, museums and education.

Planned Impact

The ENGAGE Network focuses on one of the world's most challenging issues: how to build sustainable peace and inclusive growth for communities struggling with the challenges of conflict in unstable border regions. It aims to have structural, conceptual and policy impacts by challenging debates on the future development of communities on the physical and ideological borders of conflict. The project is designed to envision long-term sustainable peace, averting potential conflicts through cross-boundary collaborations around heritage-centred sustainable capacity-building programmes, where education, communities (women, young people, refugees), social inclusion and job creation are the central focus. It will co-design processes, partnerships, indicators and metrics which communities, NGOs, academics and governments can use to envision and measure successful interventions in conflict areas and building long-term socio economic prosperity. It will seek to advance discourse and policy on cultural heritage as a source of economic prosperity for countries and communities, informing novel approaches to heritage economy in conflict areas as pathway for collaboration for economic benefits.

The ENGAGE Network Development Grant seeks to develop a collaborative and engagement research platform with local and regional partners at its global research hubs designed to co-design the Network's conceptual framework, activities and impact programme in response to the local needs of heritage communities at border regions. The project activities will build the foundation and become the bedrock of the ENGAGE Network's research agenda, theoretical and empirical investigation, whilst interrogating opportunities for impact-driven collaboration and regional partnerships cross cutting notional political borders. At the centre of this programme is equitable research collaboration on shared interest that address the challenges, needs and sustainable development of heritage communities at cross border regions. It will run at three of the designed five-Research Regional Hubs in Tunisia, Iraq and Nepal.


Impact-led engagement and dissemination will directly engage with target audiences and stakeholders in the UK and overseas, including representatives of relevant governmental ministries, community groups and key international partners and humanitarian organisations across the 3 pilot project study regions. Local communities are major beneficiaries of the Network's activities with planned impact on cultural and socio-economic development. Three main workshops will be held in the 3 pilot regions at the partnership hubs in Tunisia, Iraq and Southern Nepal. At the end of the 12-month project a 3-day network showcase event will be held. All information and feedback from the workshops, community work and public engagement activities taking place throughout the project will be translated into English, Arabic and Kurdish to aid with understanding and dissemination. At the end of the Developmental Project a full research agenda will be put to public discussion and debate under the title: "Heritage Borders of Engagement: Towards a Global Research and Sustainable Development Agenda" a 3-day Regional Hub 'lessons learnt' and Partner Engagement event will be held in the UK at Nottingham Trent University in late March / early April 2020 and connected to all research partners. Regional Research Hub CoIs will be present. The workshops and engagement events programme will allow up-to-date findings and recommendations arising from the Research Hub creation to be disseminated directly stakeholders, community groups and another member of the Project. The research themes, methodology and aims of the proposed ENGAGE Network will then be adapted taking in responses to the feedback, concerns and needs of the local communities.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description The ENGAGE Network was set up to develop transformative equitable partnerships in the Middle East and South Asia, focused on shared 'humanitarian heritage'. Working with local border communities, whose cultural heritage and traditions have been affected by conflict across geographical and cultural borders, the Network aims to promote peacebuilding, cultural exchange, and socio-economic development. Working collaboratively with research partners and communities across three Humanitarian Heritage Regional Hubs in Tunisia, Iraq and India, ENGAGE Network partners developed alliances and partnerships between communities, heritage stakeholders and social groups across conflict-prone borders.

During this partnership building award, the ENGAGE Network managed to develop new collaborations, case study analyses and working with policy makers on the development of community-led and evidence-based research investigation into 'humanitarian heritage' in a range of diverse contexts and regional conditions.

Through organised the three regional hub, and a series of workshops, we managed to develop a space for for mutual discussion, co-production, engagement and learning between local research teams, community groups, project partners, national organisations and governmental officials. We also managed to exchange knowledge, experiences and learn from the challenges that face heritage communities in each region. Each regional hub had a critical mission that resulted in:
? Developing scoping research investigation on the needs for humanitarian heritage as an inclusive programme of cultural exchange.
? Developing a collaborative research environment that facilitate shared and sustained engagement with local heritage communities, their representatives and CSOs within the regional research hubs.
? Enhancing and refining the research programme and framework proposed by the ENGAGE network through contribution of local and regional research partners in the three different regional contexts.

Over the a period of 12 months, much of this work has been achieved and results reported via a series of research reports, case studies, and consultation documents. Those papers will be published under ENGAGE Papers Series, with Research Policy and Framework on Humanitarian Heritage, which is currenlty under development, but will result in a number of ENGAGE Exchange Events with policy makers.
Exploitation Route The outcome of this award will feed in the development of a series of research projects, policy guidelines and knowledge exchange activities amongst participating partners. Some of that has started already, with the involvement and participation of several decision makers, government representatives and community organisations in both India and Iraq. Additional partners from Iran and Pakistan joined the activities with some research investigation and engagement events and projects are already under development.

The focus of the Award and research activities on marginalised heritage communities in conflict/post-conflict regions has shifted the attention of international organisations and many policy stakeholders towards the blight of ignorance and limited socio-economic and cultural opportunities available to many communities who lived off their association of cultural heritage.
Sectors Education,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections,Security and Diplomacy

URL https://humanitarianheritage.com
 
Description The ENGAGE Network was set up to develop transformative impact on heritage communities, research networks and policy makers, that drive the attention to the values, practices and ethics of humanitarian heritage. Working with local border communities, whose cultural heritage and traditions have been affected by conflict across geographical and cultural borders, the ENGAGE Network activities, workshops and stakeholder engagements managed to develop national and regional discourse and cultural exchange on the negative impact and lack of policy of deprivation, conflict and displacement of communities resulting in the erasure of their heritage and traditions. Working collaboratively with research partners and communities across three Humanitarian Heritage Regional Hubs in Tunisia, Iraq and India, we managed to highlight gaps in the legislative structure, focus and support systems. 10 case studies were developed at greater details that highlight those challenges and way forward. Through organised the three regional hub, and a series of workshops, we managed to develop a space for for mutual discussion, co-production, engagement and learning between local research teams, community groups, project partners, national organisations and governmental officials. We also managed to exchange knowledge, experiences and learn from the challenges that face heritage communities in each region. We managed to enable the direct conversation between communities and their representatives to talk directly with policy makers. The ENGAGE Papers focus on those issues and how to inform the development of policy frameworks and support systems to enable communities to be protected, supported and to fulfil their socio-economic needs. Over the a period of 12 months, much of this work has been achieved and results reported via a series of research reports, case studies, whilst the policy guidelines and framework are under development. Those papers will be published under ENGAGE Papers Series, with Research Policy and Framework on Humanitarian Heritage, which is currently under development, but will result in a number of ENGAGE Exchange Events with policy makers.
First Year Of Impact 2020
Sector Education,Government, Democracy and Justice,Culture, Heritage, Museums and Collections
Impact Types Cultural,Societal,Policy & public services

 
Description Heritage Borders of Engagement Network (ENGAGE) 
Organisation University of Birmingham
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The ENGAGE Network developed as a result of long-term collaboration between specialist Research Centres at partners institutions, including the Rights Lab (UoN); Cities and Infrastructure Group (UoL); the Ironbridge International Institute of Cultural Heritage (IIICH; UoB) and the Centre for Architecture, Urbanism and Global Heritage (CAUGH- NTU). We are the coordinator of this Network, and my research team has largely coordinated the research planning, activities, meetings and helped gather essential datasets and shape the outline of the research programme. Ee have worked together through 3 workshops and develop a research programme for Humanitarian Heritage, in collaboration with Partners in India, Iraq, and Tunisia. We have managed to collaborate on a number of research projects, public lectures, and now we have a series of Workshops at each country, that are in progress.
Collaborator Contribution Each partner invested with their Human Resources and infrastructure in supporting the development of this research programme and associated planning. IIICH have worked colsoey with us on the Theoretical framework; while UoL have largely shaped the methodological approach for co-creation of art and craft; and finally UoN's Rights Lab team has managed to coordinate the network activities in India and brought on board specialist NGO in India, Praxis as a key member of the Network.
Impact On going. No results yet.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Heritage Borders of Engagement Network (ENGAGE) 
Organisation University of Leeds
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The ENGAGE Network developed as a result of long-term collaboration between specialist Research Centres at partners institutions, including the Rights Lab (UoN); Cities and Infrastructure Group (UoL); the Ironbridge International Institute of Cultural Heritage (IIICH; UoB) and the Centre for Architecture, Urbanism and Global Heritage (CAUGH- NTU). We are the coordinator of this Network, and my research team has largely coordinated the research planning, activities, meetings and helped gather essential datasets and shape the outline of the research programme. Ee have worked together through 3 workshops and develop a research programme for Humanitarian Heritage, in collaboration with Partners in India, Iraq, and Tunisia. We have managed to collaborate on a number of research projects, public lectures, and now we have a series of Workshops at each country, that are in progress.
Collaborator Contribution Each partner invested with their Human Resources and infrastructure in supporting the development of this research programme and associated planning. IIICH have worked colsoey with us on the Theoretical framework; while UoL have largely shaped the methodological approach for co-creation of art and craft; and finally UoN's Rights Lab team has managed to coordinate the network activities in India and brought on board specialist NGO in India, Praxis as a key member of the Network.
Impact On going. No results yet.
Start Year 2019
 
Description Heritage Borders of Engagement Network (ENGAGE) 
Organisation University of Nottingham
Country United Kingdom 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution The ENGAGE Network developed as a result of long-term collaboration between specialist Research Centres at partners institutions, including the Rights Lab (UoN); Cities and Infrastructure Group (UoL); the Ironbridge International Institute of Cultural Heritage (IIICH; UoB) and the Centre for Architecture, Urbanism and Global Heritage (CAUGH- NTU). We are the coordinator of this Network, and my research team has largely coordinated the research planning, activities, meetings and helped gather essential datasets and shape the outline of the research programme. Ee have worked together through 3 workshops and develop a research programme for Humanitarian Heritage, in collaboration with Partners in India, Iraq, and Tunisia. We have managed to collaborate on a number of research projects, public lectures, and now we have a series of Workshops at each country, that are in progress.
Collaborator Contribution Each partner invested with their Human Resources and infrastructure in supporting the development of this research programme and associated planning. IIICH have worked colsoey with us on the Theoretical framework; while UoL have largely shaped the methodological approach for co-creation of art and craft; and finally UoN's Rights Lab team has managed to coordinate the network activities in India and brought on board specialist NGO in India, Praxis as a key member of the Network.
Impact On going. No results yet.
Start Year 2019
 
Description ENGAGE Network: "BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS FOR HUMANITARIAN HERITAGE IN THE MIDDLE EAST: Engagements, Opportunities and Regional Challenges 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Heritage Borders of Engagement Network [ENGAGE]
IRAQ REGIONAL HUB - International Workshop

BUILDING PARTNERSHIPS FOR HUMANITARIAN HERITAGE IN THE MIDDLE EAST
Partnerships, Opportunities and Regional Challenges

20th August 2020, University of Baghdad, Iraq
10.00am-17.30pm (Iraq) / 08.00am-15.30pm (BST)

Workshop Synopsis

The ENGAGE Network seeks to develop transformative equitable partnerships in the Middle East and South Asia, focused on shared 'humanitarian heritage'. Working with local border communities, whose cultural heritage and traditions have been affected by conflict across geographical and cultural borders, the Network aims to promote peacebuilding, cultural exchange, and socio-economic development. Working collaboratively with research partners and communities across three Humanitarian Heritage Regional Hubs in Tunisia, Iraq and India, ENGAGE Network partners will foster alliances and partnerships between communities, heritage stakeholders and social groups across conflict-prone borders.

The ENGAGE Network seeks to develop a collaborative and engagement research platform with local and regional partners at its global research hubs designed to co-design the network's conceptual framework, activities and impact programme in response to the local needs of heritage communities at border regions. The three initial regional hubs in India, Tunisia and Iraq, will develop activities programme that will build the foundation and become the bedrock of the Network research agenda, theoretical and empirical investigation, whilst interrogating opportunities for impact-driven collaboration and regional partnerships cross cutting notional political borders. At the centre of this programme is equitable research collaboration on shared interest that address the challenges, needs and sustainable development of heritage communities at cross border regions.

During workshops at the regional hubs, space will be provided for mutual discussion, co-production, engagement and learning between local research teams, community groups, project partners, national organisations and governmental officials. Each regional hub has a critical mission that engage:

? Developing scoping research investigation on the needs for humanitarian heritage as an inclusive programme of cultural exchange.
? Developing a collaborative research environment that facilitate shared and sustained engagement with local heritage communities, their representatives and CSOs within the regional research hubs.
? Enhancing and refining the research programme and framework proposed by the ENGAGE network through contribution of local and regional research partners in the three different regional contexts.

The workshop aimed to engage with local and regional actors to develop its research agenda, developmental studies and implementation programme. It contributed to building the Network research programme that is driven by the local knowledge, understanding of challenges and potential opportunities. It addressed the needs of local communities, stakeholders and policy makers, in order to sustain and build upon relationships to develop peaceful and productive engagement that benefit heritage sites, practices and communities at the borders. The workshop was conducted on three parallel sessions and track that covered: Research, Community Stakeholders; and Policy makers. It included over 40 international speakers from several countries, and addressed by His Excellency the Minister of Cultural in Iraq and representatives from the Minister of Higher Education and Scientific research and the presidents of three Universities in Iraq.

Research reports, and policy engagement developed from the Workshop events and talks.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://humanitarianheritage.com/engage-me-launch-seminar
 
Description HERITAGE AT THE MARGINS: Addressing challenges and opportunities of working with heritage communities 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact Heritage Borders of Engagement Network [ENGAGE]
SOUTH ASIA REGIONAL HUB - India

Title: "HERITAGE AT THE MARGINS: Addressing challenges and opportunities of working with heritage communities"

Dates:
Friday October 9, 2020 (2:00 PM - 6:30 PM IST/ 9.30 AM - 2.00 PM BST)
Saturday October 10, 2020 (11:30 AM - 5:30 PM IST/ 7.00 AM - 1.00 PM BST)"


Workshop Brief:

Heritage Borders of Engagement Network [ENGAGE] (https://humanitarianheritage.com/) working in alliance with HEIs, research centres and international partners is an endeavour to formulate an evidence-based understanding of the role and potential of heritage sites, practices and communities in developing long-term sustainable and inclusive peace across conflict-prone border locations through creative modes of cultural productions, education, tourism, interdependent economy and social justice. It is a collaborative multidisciplinary research platform to develop new methods, case studies, policy briefs, strategic plans and practical toolkits for border communities. With the core intent of shared 'humanitarian heritage', coordinated by Nottingham Trent University and funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council in the UK, ENGAGE network seeks to build transferrable models of regional partnerships in Middle East and North Africa and Southern Asian regions that promotes peace, transnational cultural exchange and equitable socio-economic development of communities. The Network has key institutional partners including Nottingham Trent University, University of Leeds, University of Nottingham, University in Birmingham in the UK, with Praxis India, University of Wasit and University of Sousse coordinating the three regional hubs in India, Iraq and Tunisia. ENGAGE has 25 partners in 12 countries made up from academic institutions, communities, stakeholders, cultural institutions and policy makers.

India Hub representing the South Asian region of ENGAGE Heritage Borders Network collaborating with Praxis Institute for Participatory Practices, Partners in Change, Centre for Heritage Conservation - CEPT Research and Development Foundation Ahmedabad, School of Planning and Architecture New Delhi aims to concentrate on research and partnerships in the first phase. A workshop at the onset of India Hub engagement plans to bring in practitioners, academicians, civil societies, non-governmental agencies, government officials, policy makers, students, community representatives, youths and concerned creative collaborators on one platform, publicize the aim of the network and the research agenda. The workshop, a knowledge sharing forum will explore 21st century challenges and opportunities of heritage conservation focusing on modern conservation of heritage from the lens of 'selectivity, authenticity or integrity and sustainability'. The imperative of the workshop will be highlighting the notion of conserving shared humanitarian heritage of a transferrable and sustainable model with cross-border peaceful partnerships.

With the fundamental understanding of humanity that is indiscriminate about human race, culture, ethnicity or religion, the broader objective of the panels will be to identify, record, document, assess and analyze alternative forms, practices and interpretation of heritage-making by minorities. It will seek to dig deep into the dialogue where cultures of past conceptualizing heritage will be interpreted at the juxtaposition of varied pasts of diverse range of communities across state and national borders. To imagine the past in the present, heritage will be unveiled in relation to the 'other' or as part of the other at margins, instead of interjection. Rising cultural consciousness and a sense of assertion among marginalized groups will reflect the brighter side of renovation of identity and culture claiming respect and social esteem across native and international spheres. The panels in different contextual and spatial understanding besides emphasizing the role of youth collaborations in safeguarding the vernaculars and creating new age measures of preservation, will also engage with the state's profound role in preserving national heritage and its legal as well SDG frameworks. The key takeaways of the workshop will comprehend into advocacy for effective strategies of sustainable peace as well as scope for further research.

The workshop was conducted on two days across 4 different panels, hosted by partner institutions, with speakers from different international and regional partners and researchers. Talks, panel discussions and reports on case studies followed on from the workshop, with a series of interviews and analysis. Policy making and community engagement efforts and mechanim were analysed and reported in the ENGAGE-india Hub Paper series.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020
URL https://humanitarianheritage.com/engage-sa-launch-seminar
 
Description UNESCO UK National Commission Conference [Heritage and Our Sustainable Future] - Special Panel of Digital Heritage Technologies 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Other audiences
Results and Impact Panel Title: "USING DIGITAL TECHNOLOGIES TO INNOVATE IN HERITAGE RESEARCH, POLICY AND PRACTICE"
Friday 26th February 2021 | 10:00 - 12:00 (GMT)

This is special panel organised by the UNESCO-K National Committee in collaboration with PraxisResearch team at the University of Leeds, as part of the International Conference: "Heritage and Out Sustainable Future". This cross-cutting session explores ways to maximise the use of digital technologies to innovate in heritage research, policy and practice for sustainable development. How can we use digital technologies to provide new ways to engage with different forms of heritage and amplify marginalised voices? How can digital technologies be used to better-inform the decision-making process? What kind of future research, practical actions, and multi-level and multi-sectorial partnerships are needed?

Formed with three leading experts in the field, each of the Speakers led with a series of research projects and innovations through their work, before a series of participants were divided into 3 panels of debates and discussions. The Panel was attended with an in excess of 170 people from across the globe.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2021
URL https://nomadit.co.uk/heritage-and-our-sustainable-future/index