News

Successful new grant funding to help safeguard Nepalese and Burmese heritage

21 Aug 2019

Dr Emiline Smith, Lecturer in Art Crime and Criminology at the University of Glasgow, and Lead Applicant of the project Global synchronization and the illicit antiquities trade: understanding community crime prevention in post-earthquake Nepal and Myanmar’, has won funding from the GCRF Small Grants.

Together with Phacharaphorn Phanomvan na Ayudhya (Oxford University), Myanmar Archaeological Association and ICOMOS Nepal, this project will compare local community-based security models in Nepal and Myanmar to assess why and how looting of cultural heritage takes place.

Dr Smith said: “I am so excited that we get a chance to contribute to sustainable initiatives that safeguard Nepalese and Burmese heritage. Our aim is to empower local communities to help prevent further damage from looting, urban development and natural disaster.”

The project aims to understand the key issues and stakeholders involved in the custodianship of movable cultural heritage and the different factors (socio-economic, political, environmental) influencing the efficacy of crime prevention strategies related to cultural heritage, both locally as well as nationally.

It also aims to explore how knowledge regarding illegal excavation, looting and trafficking of cultural objects can be integrated with local religious and traditional cultural practices to maximize effectiveness of crime prevention strategies, ultimately leading to a community-driven protection of cultural property.