I am passionate about cultural heritage, from both a critical and a practitioner’s perspective: How do heritage places and objects play into wider political and economic agendas? How can we engage wider support for heritage conservation? How can we use heritage resources to encourage interest in the world’s cultures and our shared history? Especially in our ‘post-9/11′ world, I believe these questions should be an integral part of the global dialogue on creating a sustainable future.
I seek opportunities to use my background in business communications, corporate social responsibility and international public policy to support heritage-related projects: writing for heritage presentation; fund-raising, stakeholder-engagement and awareness-building for heritage projects; managing or promoting intercultural education and dialogue projects.
Examples of work
UN Alliance of Civilisations & UN Global Compact: Conceived, researched and authored a pioneering Joint Special Report of the UN Alliance of Civilizations and the UN Global Compact on Doing Business in a Multicultural World: Challenges and Opportunities. The report argues that business has an important stake and natural role to play in fostering intercultural dialogue and understanding, as part of creating a sustainable future. The report describes numerous real-world examples of the cross-cultural challenges companies face and the different ways that they play a positive role in fostering understanding and cooperation among communities. The report was launched at the Second Global Forum of the UNAOC, in Istanbul in March 2009, where it received significant positive attention from corporate and government representatives. (Click here for full report)
Ename Center for Public Archaeology and Heritage Presentation: For 2006 conference entitled Who Owns the Past, presented paper on ‘Cultural Heritage Conservation and Corporate Social Responsibility‘, based on UCL Masters Dissertation, Barbarians at the Gate? Corporate Support for Cultural Heritage Conservation in the Context of Globalisation. The paper lays out the different types of private sector involvement in heritage, examining the potential benefits and risks of each. Despite the rapid rise in corporate social responsibility and business sustainability initiatives — as well as the growing need for alternative sources of support for heritage conservation — multi-sector collaboration on heritage conservation has been very limited. The paper suggests several ways that heritage conservation efforts might build support by linking themselves more clearly to the global sustainability agenda of both governments and businesses.
State Hermitage Museum: On behalf of The Coca-Cola Company, negotiated and launched one of the first corporate sponsorship agreements concluded with the State Hermitage Museum, under its distinguished Director Dr. Mikhail Piotrovsky, following the opening up of the Russian economy in the mid-1990s. The sponsorship funded a much-needed renovation of the museum’s laboratory for restoring its unparalleled collection of Russian and European icons. The successful sponsorship has continued and expanded in the years since the initial agreement.
World Monuments Fund: Conducted a short-term research project for the Paris office of the World Monuments Fund to investigate cultural heritage policies in African countries and identify opportunities for expanded WMF involvement in the region.
Institute of Archaeology: While earning a Masters degree in Cultural Heritage Studies from the Institute of Archaeology at University College London (see About), I prepared the interpretive text for the International Connections Exhibition, highlighting the international networks of the Institute using objects from the office of the Institute’s Director, Peter Ucko. The text used story-telling and humor to create an entertaining exhibit.
“Every view of the world that becomes extinct, every culture that disappears, diminishes a possibility of life.” Octavio Paz
“As groups learn to work together, cultural stereotypes are shattered and the former enemy is demystified and humanised.” Daniel Lubetzky, Founder/CEO, Peaceworks