Welcome to my research site!

If you would like to know about my doctoral project on methods for assessing the social values of this historic environment, which informed the development of the Social Values Toolkit, please see the section ‘PhD research’.

The other pages of this site introduce some of the post-doctoral projects and other activities that I have been working on since completing my PhD.

I hope you enjoy reading about my work. Please do contact me if you would like further information or to discuss a potential collaboration.

PhD Research

Wrestling with Social Value: An Examination of Methods and Approaches for Assessing Social Value in Heritage Management and Conservation

My collaborative doctoral project (2018 – 2021) focused on the challenges and opportunities surrounding the assessment of social values in heritage management and conservation. The aim was to develop and trial a suite of qualitative methods for examining social values in a variety of ‘real-world’ heritage contexts. The resulting evidence-base was used to identify a methodological toolkit to help meet the needs of the heritage conservation profession and to deepen our understanding of the social value of the historic environment.

In this project, ‘social value’ refers to the significance of the historic environment to contemporary communities, including people’s sense of identity, belonging, attachment and place.

For more on this project, please see the items under ‘PhD Research’ on the main menu and the section on Writing.

AHRC Place Programme

Demonstrating the effectiveness of Arts and Humanities research for addressing the needs of different locales

Since July 2022, I have been part of a small team based at the University of Glasgow working on the Place-based Research Programme, which is examining the impact of Arts and Humanities research on place-based needs and priorities. The Programme is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and led by Prof. Rebecca Madgin, the AHRC’s Programme Director for Place.

In my role as Post-doctoral Research Associate, I have taken a lead in evidencing the breadth of place-based work funded by AHRC (analysing records from the UK Research and Innovation Gateway to Research and Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 and 2021 databases) and developing an open call for evidence to address emerging questions and gaps.

For more on the Programme, please see https://gla.ac.uk/place.

Deep Cities

CURBATHERI – Curating Sustainable URBAn Transformations through HERItage 

The ‘Deep Cities’ project is an international collaboration exploring how historic transformation impacts on values related to the urban built environment. I was a Research Assistant on the project (June – October 2021) with the University of Stirling team, which was led by Dr Chiara Bonacchi (PI) and Prof Sian Jones (Co-I).

I used qualitative, participatory research methods to explore the values associated with two sites, one in the Canongate area of Edinburgh and one in Woolwich, London. I also contributed to overall project activities, including co-ordination meetings (partners in four countries), knowledge exchanges, presentations, reports and other outputs, such as joint publications and conference papers.

Deep Cities is funded by the Joint Programming Initiative on Cultural Heritage. For more on the project, please see: https://curbatheri.niku.no/

International Research Exchange

The Saltire Emerging Researcher Scheme promotes mobility between Scotland and European research partners in order to strengthen existing, and seed future, research relationships

I received an award from the Saltire Scheme to spend 3-months (April – June 2022) as a visiting researcher at the University of Oslo (UiO) in Norway. My exchange was focused on shared research interests in the role heritage plays in society – in particular, questions of identity and memory – and the methods used for understanding and reflecting this in heritage management.

I was based in the Department of Archaeology, Conservation and History, and connected with a multi-disciplinary network of researchers through the Heritage Experience Initiative, a priority project of the UiO Faculty of Humanities that aims to develop critical heritage research in close co–operation with the heritage sector. During my exchange, I also collaborated with staff at the independent Norwegian Institute for Cultural Heritage Research, to explore how my research findings from Scotland compare with heritage management policies and practices in Norway. The project supported knowledge exchange and my extended academic networks through conference sessions, seminars and workshops with students, researchers, and heritage practitioners.

For more details, see my reflections blog.

The Saltire Emerging Researcher Scheme 2022 was funded by the Scottish Funding Council and I received my award via the Scottish Graduate School for the Arts and Humanities.