Mainly due to EU structural funds, millions of euros are invested into the field of heritage interpretation across the region. This includes new museums, exhibitions, education trails, restoration and promotion of cultural and natural heritage sites. The effort is often inspired by world-class interpretation projects implemented in Western Europe. New digital media and interactivities are often promoted as the modern way of approaching visitors. Few existing evaluation studies that emerged in the V4 in the recently show that the real performance/outputs of projects and the impact on visitors are behind descriptions in the grant applications. The reason is that projects do not put emphasis on the content development due to lack of know-how in heritage interpretation. Thus, the investments do not achieve their full potential because of missing soft-skills.
The aim of the project is to offer current cutting-edge courses in heritage interpretation to participants in the Visegrad countries and the Balkans. While scoping and scrutinizing available courses during the first face-to-face partners’ meeting (Hungary, March 2018), Interpret Europe Certified Interpretive Writer Course (CIW) was considered the most relevant one for the current situation in the partner countries. The course deals with written texts and thus aims at heritage interpretation tools with the highest delivery costs (museums, visitor centres, educational trails). The course was developed in 2017 by Interpret Europe umbrella organization and the price for the five day training is starting at 400€ excluding travel and boarding costs, which makes it unachievable for participants from the Visegrad countries.
The idea of the project is to train qualified lecturers from V4 countries + Slovenia, transfer the course to national languages, run pilot trainings, make final version of the course and make it available to professionals in the cultural and natural heritage field in respective countries for a fragment (about 25%) of the standard Western European price and thus contribute to the needed soft skill development.
The project website: Development of Skills in Heritage Interpretation