Doing Heritage Together – New Heritage Frontiers in Collaborative Planning
How can cultural heritage contribute to socially sustainable spatial development in democratic societies? This chapter explores new heritage frontiers in collaborative spatial planning processes. Throughout the last three decades, heritage management has become increasingly integrated with spatial planning and, in particular, with the transformation of existing built environments. In this context, cultural heritage is often not produced to safeguard relics from the past, but rather to contribute to political, social and economic spatial development (Fairclough 2009). The European Council’s Faro Convention from 2005 thus conceives cultural heritage as a malleable resource for sustainable spatial development while emphasising cultural heritage as an essential constituent of place and identity that should increase everyone’s quality of life. When seen as an active component in spatial planning, the processes of heritage making and their outcome, the heritage product, often depart substantially from established practices: here, heritage is not only selected and managed by historians, restoration architects and other experts, but is rather an issue for debate in democratic processes that involve a broad range of actors. Furthermore, heritage value is not only ascribed to objects that are considered to be particularly good or representative relics from the past. In a forward-looking perspective, everything that is inherited from the past can potentially have value for spatial development – buildings, cultural traditions and place narratives.