New museum spaces & education resources for children in Iraqi Kurdistan

January 28, 2019

New museum spaces and educational resources were officially launched today (5 September 2019) in Slemani and in Kalar, Iraqi Kurdistan.

Museums and schools will use these new resources to help children learn about the archaeology and history of the region, and explore their cultural heritage and identity. The majority of museum visitors in Iraqi Kurdistan are schoolchildren but, with decades of armed conflict and economic crises, museums have not been able to adapt to the needs of their young visitors.

Inherit worked with the Directorate of Antiquities of Slemani Governate, the Slemani Museum and the Garmian Civilizations Museum in Kalar, and with an international team led by Dr Claudia Glatz of the University of Glasgow, to create the resources.

This initiative is part of a wider project – Archaeological Practice and Heritage Protection in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq – led by the University of Glasgow and funded by the British Council’s Cultural Protection Fund, in partnership with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

Kamal Rasheed, the Director of Antiquities of Slemani Governate said:

“ This project is of immense importance for Kurdistan, because it involves everyone in the archaeology and history of this region and sets an example for future work. Among many other important activities and outcomes, this project has created the first ever museum space in Iraq that is dedicated exclusively to the education and enjoyment of our children. ”


Inherit’s Aphrodite Sorotou, said:

“ Encouraging stewardship from the youngest school child to the oldest members of rural village communities, the project hopes to inspire a type of heritage management and protection that contributes to sustainable development. It tries to demonstrate that heritage is a right that we ought to respect and be inspired by, for our present and future. ”

Dr Claudia Glatz of the University of Glasgow explained that:

“The purpose of the new museum spaces and educational resources is to help widen access to, and the enjoyment of, the rich and diverse archaeological heritage and history of Iraq and the wider region. The new museum spaces and educational resources are also designed to communicate the importance and need of protection for the region’s archaeological sites and cultural heritage.”


Slemani Museum Kids – the new space at Slemani Museum – provides young visitors, their parents and teachers with a fun and active experience. The space has been designed to complement the school curriculum. It brings the landscapes of the western Zagros mountains into the museum. In this setting, children explore archaeological sites, ancient artefacts and their production and uses. They learn about archaeological methods and concepts, and the passage of time. They engage with interpretations of the past and with historical narratives through play, story-telling and enactment. A quiet space allows children to practice ancient crafts such as pottery making and cuneiform writing, while a state-of-the art interactive touch screen provides more structured instruction for older students.

The new space in the Garmian Civilizations Museum in Kalar, is called ‘Are you an archaeologist?’ It focuses on the practice of archaeology, using the example of the Sirwan Regional Project, which is co-directed by Dr Glatz. A trilingual exhibition, aimed at visitors of all ages, demonstrates the richness and importance of the largely-unexplored archaeological sites of the region. It looks at how archaeologists investigate these sites and landscapes, and at how plausible archaeological stories are constructed from archaeological finds. The exhibition encourages visitors to reflect on protection of the region’s unique heritage, and on preventing the loss of the meaningful stories that it can tell us about the past.

Three themed educational boxes have also been created for schools. The boxes and their multi-sensory contents are designed for use in classroom teaching. They help children to comprehend historical narratives, technological and social changes through time, and social interactions like those associated with communal eating. The boxes can also be used to encourage children to explore questions of cultural identity and heritage through play and discussion.

The contents include ceramic and stone replicas of ancient pottery, cuneiform tablets and seals, as well as charred grains and bones like those found on archaeological sites. They also include illustrated information booklets in Kurdish, Arabic and English, and games and fun activities that allow children who are unable to visit the museums to travel through time and get a sense of what life might have been like thousands of years ago where they live.

Schools will be able to borrow these boxes from Slemani Museum and the Garmian Civilizations Museum in Kalar from September 2019.

Further information about the project, the new museum spaces and the educational resources can be found on the project website (

Copies of the educational booklets are available to download from the website.

New film about the fight to protect Europe's last wild rivers from proposed hydropower dams

January 28, 2019


Inherit and MedINA with the Moving Image Archive to host a screening of Patagonia’s Blue Heart in Glasgow.


Blue Heart – the latest documentary film from Patagonia – depicts the fight to protect Europe’s last wild rivers. It seeks to raise international awareness about a potential environmental disaster.

The film will be screened at the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow on 6th February 2019 (doors open at 17:00).

The Balkan Peninsula between Slovenia and Albania is home to the last wild rivers in Europe, but more than 3,000 proposed hydropower projects threaten to destroy the culture and ecology of this forgotten region. If fierce local opposition fails, 20,000 kilometers of pristine sparkling creeks, raging tributaries and swift, braided currents will be forever damaged by thousands of dams and diversions—at a time when dams are being decommissioned throughout much of the developed world.

Local activists and European NGOs such as RiverWatch are fighting against government corruption and foreign investment. Blue Heart documents the battle to protect Albania’s Vjosa River, the largest undammed river in Europe; the effort to save the endangered Balkan Lynx in Macedonia; and the months-long fight by women of Kruščica, Bosnia and Herzegovina, who are protesting day and night to save their community’s only source of drinking water.

According to Ryan Gellert, Patagonia General Manager (Europe, Middle East and Africa):

“With the deluge of proposed hydropower dams and diversions in the Balkan Peninsula we are looking at what could be irreversible environmental destruction, but there is very little awareness of this issue in Europe or globally.”


“We hope that this film will bring international attention to the local communities fighting to protect the free-flowing rivers they rely on and educate people about why hydropower dams are an outdated, dirty technology.”

Yvon Chouinard, founder of Patagonia, Inc. has said:

“I believe this wild place requires and deserves protection. To destroy it, especially for an outmoded and expensive technology, is a waste of money and a moral travesty.”

The film was created by Patagonia in partnership with NGOs from across the Balkan region and throughout Europe and directed by Britton Caillouette. It is a powerful moment in the wider Save the Blue Heart of Europe campaign. In the film and throughout the campaign, Patagonia asks people to act now and sign an online petition to put pressure on foreign developers and banks, who are funding dam-building projects, including within protected areas.

Blue Heart launched globally on 28 April 2018. The world premiere of the film was held at Idbar Dam, Konjic, in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Screenings are now taking place across the Balkan Peninsula and in major cities worldwide.

Inherit, MedINA and The Moving Image Archive of the National Library of Scotland are co-hosting a screening of Blue Heart at the Kelvin Hall in Glasgow on 6th February. It will be screened alongside Power For the Highlands (1943), a historical film depicting attitudes to hydro power in the different circumstances of mid-twentieth century Scotland. The screenings will be followed by a panel and audience discussion of the Blue Heart film and the situation in the Balkans.

A trailer for the film can be viewed here:

Tickets for the 6th February, Kelvin Hall screening event are free and can be reserved online:


Notes for editors


Blue Heart Screening

Wednesday, 6th February 2019

Doors open at 17:00

Moving Image Archive

Lecture Theatre & Screening Room

Kelvin Hall, 1445 Argyle Street

Glasgow, G3 8AW



About Patagonia

Founded by Yvon Chouinard in 1973, Patagonia is an outdoor company based in Ventura, California. A Certified B Corp, Patagonia’s mission is to build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm and use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis. The company is recognized internationally for its commitment to authentic product quality and environmental activism, contributing $90 million to date in grants and in-kind donations.                                                                                                                                                              

About the director

Britton Caillouette has been making films in the outdoors for over a decade. A student of history with a keen eye for photography and a love for challenging production situations, he brings a unique style of visual storytelling and humanity to his stories. Britton directed his first documentary in war-torn West Africa while an undergraduate at Stanford University and has won awards for his work in both film and advertising including a Cannes Lion.

About Inherit

Inherit – the Institute for Heritage and Sustainable Human Development – seeks to enable people to use their heritage to transform their lives. Working across Europe and in the Middle East, the Institute conducts research, collaborates at a practical level with communities and other partners, and advocates positive change. Inherit’s aim is to help people to conserve and use their heritage for the purposes of sustainable development, and to make their distinctive voices heard concerning their cultures and ways of life, their communities and their places. Based in Glasgow, Inherit is part of a larger heritage charity, the York Archaeological Trust.


About MedINA

The Mediterranean Institute for Nature and Anthropos (MedINA) has been working at the interface of nature and culture since 2003. Its mission is to contribute to a harmonious relationship between Nature and Anthropos (Humankind), particularly in the Mediterranean Region, through research, action and public awareness raising.



About the Moving Image Archive

The Moving Image Archive of the National Library of Scotland is Scotland's national moving image collection, preserving over 100 years of history on film.

On the move | Faces

July 10, 2018

On the move | Faces brings together a dynamic and critical selection of photographs from around the Mediterranean shedding light to the livelihoods of our contemporary transhumant and mobile pastoralists across the Basin. This latest edition of the On the move exhibition offers a free, lively space to discover older and new photographic work and reflect on a time of significant change and the effects of modernisation on traditional practices like transhumance.


The exhibition features a diverse selection of 30 portraits of shepherds by 6 artists working in Marocco, Tunisia, Lebanon, Turkey, Spain and Greece and engaging with topical concerns; from the rapidly changing socio-economic context, the environment, technology, human relations, and cultural heritage.

The Institute for Heritage and Sustainable Human Development  is supporting and co-curating this exhibition with the Mediterranean Institute for Nature and Anthropos (MedINA) and the photographer, Stamos Abatis.

The exhibition is organised in the framework of the “On the Move” initiative of the Mediterranean Consortium for Nature & Culture ( and is co-funded by MAVA Foundation for Nature.

For more information contact Aphrodite Sorotou: or click here.

Historic Environment Scotland Policy Statement, Conference on 15th March 2018

March 14, 2018

Inherit has been invited to contribute to a conference on historic environment policy on 15th March 2018.


Historic Environment Scotland (HES) is the lead public body in Scotland for the historic environment. HES published its Policy Statement in 2016 and this is now being reviewed. The Policy Statement sets out how HES fulfils its regulatory and advisory roles and how it expects others to interpret and implement Scottish Planning Policy with regard to historic environment matters.


The conference is being organised by Built Environment Forum Scotland (BEFS), an umbrella body for organisations working in the built environment in Scotland. The event aims to inform the review of the Policy Statement. It will bring people together for an intensive workshop looking at creative and pragmatic approaches to caring for Scotland’s historic environment. The main themes of the day are Vision, Management and Designation.


We are grateful to BEFS for the invitation to contribute to the event. Our contribution will take the form of a ‘provocation’ on the theme of Designation, and we have chosen to speak about the relationships between designation and people. We will focus on Designation+Justice.


Designation is one of the main ways in which Scotland’s historic environment – its historic buildings, sites, places and landscapes – is protected and preserved. Looking beyond this explicit conservation purpose, we see that designation potentially has wider effects too. Designation influences the ways in which places and communities develop. (Here, we are referring both to the act of designating something in the first place and to any subsequent decisions and actions relating to the designation.)


In our provocation, we will aim to chart a path towards a more just approach to designation. We will address three questions. How do historic environment designations impact upon people? Can people participate in designation decisions that affect them? What are the priorities for the future of designation policy and designation practice?


For further information on HES, BEFS, the HES Policy Statement and the conference, see:

Saving Europe's last free flowing wild river: Vjosa/Aoos

February 20, 2018

The Vjosa/Aoos River is one of the last free-flowing rivers in Europe. In its 270 km journey from source to sea, it crosses both Greece and Albania with a catchment that covers an area of 3,540 km2. There are currently plans for dozens of Hydropower Schemes (see along its length, including its many tributaries, mainly in Albania. Saving this precious natural resource is key for the preservation of its rich and unique biodiversity and for the livelihoods of the peoples within its catchment. Safeguarding these qualities is therefore a significant matter of concern locally, nationally and for the international community.

Inherit is proud to have been invited by MedINA to join forces with them and with Euronatur, RiverWatch, EcoAlbania, Pindos Perivallontiki, Wetlands International and IUCN ECARO to work with local stakeholders towards the establishment of a transboundary River Park between Greece and Albania to effect greater protection of the River.


The kick-off meeting of the "Saving Europe's last free flowing wild river: Vjosa/Aoos" project took place on the 31st January & 1st of February in Konitsa, Greece. The project is funded by the MAVA Foundation and will involve local partner organisations to undertake on‐site‐protest together with research, activities at national and international levels to raise awareness, influence policy, build capacity of relevant stakeholders, and provide socio‐economic alternatives to dam building in the still free flowing river Vjosa/Aoos. It will promote transboundary cooperation and the establishment of a transboundary protected area.

Inherit's contribution will focus mainly on Greece. The potential reversion of the impacts of the existing dam in the Pighes of Aoos near Metsovo, as well as the prevention of the diversion the Aoos River to Ioannina Lake, will be central to the work that will be conducted. We will examine the Aoos River both as a natural & a cultural resource. We believe, that a threat to the river is a threat to its biodiversity, the cultural values associated with it and a threat to the communities that surround it. Thus, both MedINA and Inherit will identify and collaborate with key stakeholders at local and international level encouraging the stewardship of the catchment area's landscapes and empowering its local communities.



For more information please contact A. Sorotou ( or A. Katsaros (

Inherit’s forthcoming symposium at the IALE 2017 European Congress

August 31, 2017

From fragility to empowerment

The directors of Inherit are pleased to invite you to participate in our symposium at the IALE 2017 European Congress “From pattern and process to people and action”, in Ghent, 12-15 September 2017. Inherit’s symposium “From fragility to empowerment: new approaches to landscape community development after the adoption of UN’s SDGs” will be taking place on the afternoon of the 14th of September with an audience of academics and practitioners from a range of disciplines and contexts.  The aim of the symposium is to foster exchange of know-how, and inspire and provoke conversations that matter. For more details about the schedule of symposia please visit:

Our goal is to showcase innovative thinking and practical examples of landscape and community development, demonstrating a range of current and potential strategies which respond to local and global challenges.  Through a range of presentations and a workshop, we aim:


- to promote and support work which links the empowerment of fragile communities around the globe with development that respects landscape and human rights from a social, economic, cultural and ecological justice perspective;

- to explore new ground-up ways of developing landscape research and practice within the framework of the global sustainable development agenda; and,

- to outline ways of promoting the wider adoption and implementation of this innovative approach by communities, NGOs, governments and others.

For a full description of our symposium please visit:’s

We hope to meet you all there.

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Design and photos © stamos.abatis

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