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Factors Influencing Decision Making within Heritage Today: what is ‘appropriate’?

Part 2 Dissertation 2019
Isabella Open
Cardiff University | UK
This dissertation explores key factors which currently influence the decision making processes within heritage and examines the criteria defining the 'appropriateness' of these factors and decisions. For the purposes of this discourse, the consultation of Historic England’s High Level Conservation Principles is used as a device to open up a questioning that examines both long accepted factors as well as developing ones, such as our diversifying identity, economic uncertainty and changing climate.The Mackintosh building at the Glasgow School of Art is a vignette to identify factors that exist in a paradox between the heritage sector’s publications and the perceived repercussions of their decisions to question what is ‘appropriate’ for the anticipated needs of future generations.This study found that there is a scarcity of diverse identities within the UK commonly participating with the historic environment, leading to an inaccurate perception of the value of heritage on both sides. An absence of the representation of the values and needs of minority and youth groups, such as identity, value and climate change, only widens this chasm, further discouraging participation. On this basis, this dissertation argues for the appropriate management of these emerging circumstances as beneficial factors rather than as problematic ones.

Isabella Open

Ms Mhairi McVicar
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