Project Details

Description of project aims

PERICLES project was an EU-funded research and innovation project running from 2018-2021, funding through the Horizon 2020 programme. The project promoted sustainable, participatory governance of cultural heritage in European coastal and maritime regions. The overall aim of the project was to develop and demonstrate a comprehensive framework

Increasingly, research and practice envisage heritage not as static, but as a dynamic, changing phenomenon. This dynamism opens us up to more bottom-up approaches to heritage management, accepting that it is not just a technical, expert-based affair. How heritage is governed, including how it is interpreted and framed, and which (and whose) heritage is prioritised, present important questions for social debate. To address this, PERICLES worked with cultural heritage through three main lenses: 1) space, place, and identity; 2) risk, resilience and adaptation; and 3) deliberative and participatory governance.

Cultural heritage provides a sense of place, unity, and belonging to people. Rooted in specific landscapes, seascapes, buildings, stories, traditions, and language, cultural heritage is a fundamental part of every society. It connects people to each other and to the past and helps guide our future.

By protecting and fighting for cultural heritage, we can strengthen identity and local societies, thereby improving overall quality of life. Culture and heritage are essential in maintaining and boosting Europe’s economic, social, cultural and natural capital. Doing so can generate prosperity, bring new jobs, enhance communities and improve local environments.

Yet, coastal cultural landscapes face risks from climate change, pollution, urbanisation, mass tourism, population decline in rural areas, the loss of traditional fishing fleets, neglect, and inconsistent policies of sea and shore conservation across European regions.

The partners were:
Aalborg University, DEN (LP)
University of York
Wageningen Univsity, NE
Queen’s University, Belfast
University of Aveiro, PORT
National Heritage Board of EstoniaT
Golfe du Morbihan, FRA
Hellenic Fisheries Research Institute, GR
Universite de Bretagne Occidentale, FRA

For details see
Short titlePERICLES
Effective start/end date1/05/1831/10/21

Collaborative partners


  • cultural heritage
  • maritime
  • policy development
  • participatory governance


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