E-RIHS: the European Research Infrastructure for Heritage Science
Heritage is a key component of the European identity. The study and preservation of cultural and natural heritage is a global challenge for science and the European society at large. E-RIHS supports research on heritage interpretation, preservation, documentation and management. State-of-the-art tools and services will be provided by cross-disciplinary groups of researchers to cross-disciplinary users and scientific communities working to advance knowledge about heritage and to devise innovative strategies for its preservation. E-RIHS connects researchers in the humanities and natural sciences and fosters a trans-disciplinary culture of exchange and cooperation. E-RIHS pursues the integration of European world-class facilities to create a cohesive entity playing a connecting role in the global community of heritage science.
Fragmentation, duplication of efforts, isolation of small research groups put at risk the competitive advantage of European heritage science research, spearheaded so well in the past by its unique cultural heritage. The long‐term tradition of this field of research, the ability to combine science with innovation, and the support provided by EU‐funded projects and integrating activities such as EU‐ARTECH, CHARISMA and IPERION CH in conservation science, and ARIADNE in archaeology, represent the background of E-RIHS. E-RIHS exploits the synergy of the cooperation among the academy, research centres, museums and cultural institutions. Both the scientific and the socio‐economic importance connected with heritage science are nowadays evident. The research community has achieved the maturity necessary to make the leap towards a permanent European research infrastructure that will impact broadly on society and economy.
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