2018-19: Understanding Visitor Engagement of Free Heritage Sites Using Social Media



'Understanding Visitor Engagement of Free Heritage Sites Using Social Media'


Knowledge Exchange Fellow:
Dr Kathryn Eccles   |   Oxford Internet Institute   |   University of Oxford

Partner Organisation:
English Heritage



English Heritage look after 255 free heritage sites, which make up over half of the organisation's portfolio, but with no manned gates or paid entry points at which to gather even straightforward data such as numbers of visitors, the free sites represent something of a challenge in understanding visitor engagement.

 This knowledge exchange project between the Oxford Internet Institute and English Heritage will pilot the use of social data, primarily from Twitter and Instagram, to try to understand the extent to which visitors' use of social media can contribute to our understanding of how visitors connect to free sites.

The project has two main objectives: 1) to explore what social data can tell us about visitor engagement with history, heritage and places, and 2) to explore with English Heritage the extent to which new data-driven approaches and methodologies can inform policy and practice within the organisation.

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