When we talk of sustainable and socially, culturally and environmentally conscious tourism, cultural heritage and its protection, promotion and re-use are one of the main topics. Our heritage makes us what we are today – it shapes our common identity, creates a sense of belonging, effects the quality of life and neighbourhoods, and stimulates creativity, education and learning. It is unique whenever we go, yet it still connects the whole humankind into one big story of human culture.
As technologies such as augmented reality and artificial intelligence evolve, cultural heritage is facing a new challenge. The new generations are already living in a new mixed-reality world and it might happen that our roots and cultural heritage will be left out of it.
To prevent this, Tourism 4.0 initiative wants to find a new meaning for cultural heritage and bring it into new contexts and digital experiences. We wish to bring fresh young ideas and new digital solution into the heritage sector as well as ignite a new chapter of European cultural heritage – Heritage+ chapter.
We will build on the HeritageLab concept and partner with Idrija 2020 Association that won last year’s EU Social Innovation Competition. HeritageLab envisions to be a local catalyst that will engage social innovators, heritage experts and local communities in bringing cultural heritage in new digital and modern contexts. By providing engaged mentors, digital expertise and innovation skill-set it aims to create new heritage-inspired products and services.
At the Launch Event of EU Social Innovation Competition 2019, Matevž Straus, a project manager at Arctur, held a speech about the experiences of participating at the competition and plans for HeritageLab and Heritage+ within the context of Tourism 4.0. There he discussed the future of tourism in the EU and globally with decision makers such as Sebastien Goupil from Canadian Commission for UNESCO and Mark Nicklas (on the photo above) from European Commission's DG Growth. Sign up for updates here!