A1 Journal article (refereed)
Conceptualisation of heritage diplomacy in scholarship (2022)

Lähdesmäki, T., & Čeginskas, V. L. A. (2022). Conceptualisation of heritage diplomacy in scholarship. International Journal of Heritage Studies, 28(5), 635-650. https://doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2022.2054846

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Lähdesmäki, Tuuli; Čeginskas, Viktorija L. A.

Journal or series: International Journal of Heritage Studies

ISSN: 1352-7258

eISSN: 1470-3610

Publication year: 2022

Publication date: 28/03/2022

Volume: 28

Issue number: 5

Pages range: 635-650

Publisher: Routledge

Publication country: United Kingdom

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1080/13527258.2022.2054846

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/80449


Heritage diplomacy is a recent concept and a new area of interest in the expanding scope of diplomacy. The concept is explored with various epistemological foci and theoretical frameworks in Western scholarship. It is often used to describe joint international projects or government initiatives abroad for preserving tangible cultural heritage. Several recent studies link heritage diplomacy to attempts to develop reciprocal relations between countries, regions, and/or communities through cultural heritage based on dialogue. This article contributes to interdisciplinary scholarship on heritage diplomacy by clarifying the concept, including its inherent notions of cultural heritage and approaches to power. Our critical close reading of 57 sampled scholarly publications reveals how heritage diplomacy is commonly approached from a conservationist point of view, emphasising the preservation of tangible cultural heritage through knowledge exchange, material aid, and funding. Scholarship lacks studies focusing on the uses of intangible cultural heritage for heritage diplomacy. The study reveals heritage diplomacy scholars’ shared interest in power asymmetry and struggle: the concept can be used to recognise and deconstruct power hierarchies between heritage communities. We do this by understanding cultural heritage as a contact zone of people-to-people connectivity, reciprocal cooperation, mutual trust, and dialogue.

Keywords: cultural heritage; international relations; cultural relations; diplomacy; power structures; concept analysis

Free keywords: cultural heritage; heritage diplomacy; international cultural relations; power; geoculture; conceptualisation

Contributing organizations

Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2022

JUFO rating: 2

Last updated on 2023-03-10 at 12:58