London Metropolitan University Research Institutes

PLACE. Preserving Places, Managing Mass Tourism, Urban Conservation and Quality of Life in Historic Centres

Funder: European Union, EACEA, Culture Programme 2007-2013

ISET Researcher: Allan Williams

Duration: 1.9.2008 - 28.02.2010


Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche, Istituto per la Conservazione e la Valorizzazione dei Beni Culturali, Sezione di Roma, CNR-ICVBC (Co-ordinator)

Université Libre de Bruxelles

Universidad Autonoma de Madrid

Etudes Supérieures d’Hôtellerie et de Tourisme de l’Université d’Angers

Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, School of Architecture

Università di Roma "La Sapienza"

Middle East Technical University, Department of Architecture

ISET, London Metropolitan University

Place Conference, Ankara, December 5-6, 2008

PLACE Ankara flyer 08

Project summary

Tourism in historic cities, in common with global trends in the tourist industry, is experiencing sustained expansion and is being favoured by national and local policy bodies as a particularly innovative European cultural sector. The negative impact of mass tourism on the conservation of cultural heritage, and the impoverishment of central places in terms of their traditional civic values, is evident and has already been commented on academics and policy circles. However planning and conservation policies in many historic cities continue to be fragmented and short sighted, and to ignore environmental and social issues as a result of undue focus on the short term economic advantages of tourism. The aims of this project are twofold.

· First to investigate the risks that historic cores are subjected to, and to analyse, on a comparative and interdisciplinary basis, urban, conservation and tourist policies. The study will be developed through specific case studies, selected by the eight project partners, in order to propose best practices and guidelines for their socially and environmentally sustainable enhancement.

· Second, to increase awareness amongst the principal stakeholders (such as local authorities, tour operators and citizens) of the risks, both tangible and intangible, to the cultural heritage, thereby promoting participation for positive action.

The first aim will be advanced by the organization of two international events where experts, professionals, representatives of institutional bodies and the residents of historic cities will meet and confront their interests and ideas about how to preserve the architectural heritage and related civic values of central historic places through strategies that are both socio-economically viable and culturally sustainable.

The second aim will be fulfilled by organising three website forums, engaging key stakeholders, and a photographic exhibition.

Preserving Places


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