Heritage Threats

A recent editorial in Nature (477, 510, 29 September) outlines some of the threats to preservation and scientific study of our worldwide heritage. Rather than focusing on environmental or human effects physically altering heritage, this opinion piece focuses on the threats due to a lack of long term funding and lack of recognition. The authors point to the fact that the research is accomplished across disciplines without a home discipline. In addition, they suggest that the valuable research does not get the media attention and recognition that it deserves.

The article also refers to a recent European website (Heritage Portal) that is a portal to many aspects of heritage and science, brought together from most European countries into one location. It will be interesting to see how this develops and if there are other similar websites for other locations worldwide. If you know of one, please post to the blog!

However, is our discipline's multidisciplinary nature a strength or a weakness in terms of publicity and funding? Do we get enough recognition from our respective governments and funding bodies?