AHRC ran a question and answer webinar on 14 July 2022 at 12:00.
Please watch a recording of the webinar (49 minutes).
View the presentation slides (PDF, 1MB) given at the webinar and the expression of interest example document (PDF, 95KB).
Heritage science is defined as the development and application of scientific techniques and technologies to further our ability to preserve heritage assets, to understand them and to engage the public with them.
Situated at the intersection of the humanities with the physical sciences, engineering, arts and craft, heritage science also contributes to innovation in non-heritage areas such as:
- artificial intelligence
- digital twins
- computational modelling
The UK is acknowledged as internationally eminent in heritage science. However, heritage science capability, encompassing equipment, facilities and expertise, remains fragmented, siloed and historically under-resourced.
AHRC’s one-off and heavily oversubscribed Capability for Collections Fund, launched in 2020, was a first attempt at addressing long-standing systemic failures and inefficiencies caused by inadequate or ageing facilities.
However, there is as yet:
- no coordinated programme to optimise access to facilities and knowledge exchange
- no unified strategy to maximise opportunities for collaborative research and development
- no structures to accelerate the exploitation of techniques, technologies and instruments developed by heritage scientists.
AHRC is currently developing an infrastructure funding programme that seeks to address these issues and drive forward research capabilities.
For more context on infrastructure for heritage science, see the National Heritage Science Forum website.