Cultural heritage

Round window © Janet E Davis 2008

Round window © Janet E Davis 2008

A small window onto a career in heritage

I have been involved professionally in UK heritage for many years. I have worked with/in/for all domains in cultural heritage:

  • built and designed environment;
  • museums,
  • special collections and local studies in libraries,
  • archives.

My academic background is in modern art and design history, but I keep ending up working with archaeologists (even when I consciously try to do something else!). Sometimes, I think that I possibly should have been an archaeologist. The digging bit really put me off archaeology (though I positively enjoy hearing, reading about and seeing the results of archaeological excavations).

I am especially interested in public heritage and contemporary culture. Culture, both contemporary and historical, is an essential part of human society, and I am concerned with enabling people to connect with their communities through understanding and sharing culture.

For me, understanding the past is crucial to understanding our present and planning a better future for the next generations. I strongly believe that cultural heritage should be accessible to and understood by all, not just an élite.

Use of social media for cultural institutions and individuals is something that I have focused on during the past couple of years. I had already been trying out various Web 2.0 tools in my work for some years before that. I think that social media provides possibilities to develop new ways of engaging with people and encouraging them to engage with culture.

More broadly, I am concerned with the provision of good quality resources to enable all to study, appreciate, understand and participate in culture (especially visual culture).

If you think that I might be able to help you or work with you on a project, do contact me.

Platform, Central Station, Newcastle upon Tyne © Janet E Davis

Platform, Central Station, Newcastle upon Tyne © Janet E Davis

Skills and experience summary



places (of the historical and archaeological kind)


designing and developing

cultural heritage databases

image databases


educational resources

cultural heritage information standards


history (especially 1750 to around 1970, and North of England)

historical art, architecture, design and film (1750 onwards)

image databases


heritage and collections interpretation

exhibitions and displays

website content

training manuals and guides

social media content

training and coaching people in

using IT (especially in cultural heritage institutions)

historical research

heritage management

writing (especially for the Web, including blogging)

analysing and advising on

on use of Web 2.0 technologies (including social media).

heritage collection needs, and potential for developing access and educational resources.


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