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We all have an opportunity to contribute actively to preserving our urban heritage through online phenomena such as crowdsourcing, social media and wikis. During this evening, Arno van der Hoeven will present the most important findings from his research into participatory heritage websites, Mike de Kreek will explore the social power of online neighbourhood oral history programmes, and Walther Hasselo will talk about enriching urban heritage collections through crowdsourcing and linked data.

There is a lively memory culture around cities on the web, ranging from Facebook groups with historical photos to heritage blogs published by municipal museums. The internet has created new players in the heritage sector and innovative ways to keep urban history alive. In multicultural cities, the internet can help to shed light on the diversity of local heritage and online media can help to focus attention on previously hidden or unknown urban histories.

In recent years, Arno van der Hoeven (Erasmus University Rotterdam) has worked together with the State Archive for Dutch Architecture and Urban Planning and DEN (Dutch Knowledge Centre for Digital Heritage and Culture) on a research project about participatory local history websites. The project deals with online initiatives in which local residents play an active role in enriching urban heritage and making it publicly accessible. Examples include the crowdsourcing activities of Erfgoed Leiden en Omstreken, the digital Bijlmer Museum established by local residents, the community around the Manchester Digital Music Archive, the Old Amsterdam Facebook page, the Rear-View Mirror of the Enschede City Archives, and Project Mosul, which enlists the help of the public to reconstruct heritage lost in the Second World War. 

During this evening, a research report on online urban heritage will be presented, followed by a discussion with researchers and heritage professionals. Concrete examples will be used to explore the social value, challenges and practical applications of these participatory heritage websites.

Arno van der Hoeven

Arno van der Hoeven is assistant professor in the department of media and communications at the Erasmus University Rotterdam. In recent years, he has worked in partnership with Het Nieuwe Instituut on a research project about participatory heritage websites in cities.

Walther Hasselo

As the e-heritage project manager at Erfgoed Leiden en Omstreken, Walther Hasselo has considerable experience with digital innovation in the heritage sector. He will discuss how linked data and crowdsourcing can help heritage institutions enrich their collections and answer new questions about local history.

Mike de Kreek

Mike de Kreek is a lecturer and researcher at the Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences. His doctoral thesis, entitled ‘Collective Empowerment Through Local Memory Websites’ explores the social significance of local history websites in two neighbourhoods in West and East Amsterdam. De Kreek is interested in the social power of expression via new media.

19:30 – 21:30

Het Nieuwe Instituut
Museumpark 25
3015 CB Rotterdam


Free. Registration via Tickets