Empowering Heritage With Data

Empowering Heritage With Data

Heritage Seed Fund project


Ms Phacharaphorn Phanomvan

Mr Michael Leadbetter


Development of heritage sites in Asia has traditionally been treated as isolated tourism enhancement programs. The potential of heritage spaces to become a community development driver has been neglected. Thus, little attention has been given to base-line socio-economic conditions and skill capacity building on heritage sites prior to its enlistment as national and UNESCO Heritage Park. The project will utilise social statistical data to support heritage-led development at Si Thep Historical Park in Thailand. To do this we will collaborate with Dr Punthumadee Katawandee, board member of the Master of Arts in Cultural Management (MACM) program at Chulalongkorn University to conduct a comprehensive socio-economic survey (SES) of the buffer zone connected to Si Thep heritage site.

Si Thep Historical Park is Thailand's oldest and largest historical city dating from the first millennium CE. March this year Si Thep historical park was placed on Thailand's tentative UNESCO Heritage list. There is a critical need to direct the course of urban development at the Historical Park in accordance with the principals of sustainable heritage management. A comprehensive SES would enable us to build a detailed long-run development profile and would serve as a case of best practice. This would provide essential data on the current level of social and economic development of the communities living in four villages across the heritage site. This data will then be utilised to guide long term sustainable development in Si Thep district. The Project is part of a long-term plan to incorporate applicants' research and expertise in modern heritage city planning. We plan to use base-line statistical data on socio-economic conditions to build towards long term cooperation on data-specific programs to improve the landscape, infrastructure, and skill development in the communities surrounding Si Thep Historical Park.