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Unpacking the heritage dimensions of historic urban systems: the case of Chiang Mai, Thailand.

Rungsiroj, P; Fouseki, K; (2018) Unpacking the heritage dimensions of historic urban systems: the case of Chiang Mai, Thailand. In: International Conference - Future of the Past: Tourism and Cultural Heritage in Asia. (pp. pp. 447-463). Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto Japan: Kyoto Japan. Green open access

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Abstract

Heritage values of inhabited historic towns are inevitably subject to constant socioeconomic, environmental and cultural changes. A set of concerns lies in a complex system of cultural, social, political, and economic issues, leading to difficulties in achieving a balance between the needs of heritage conservation and the needs of tourism development. If we consider heritage conservation as a process to influence people’s perceptions of heritage values and their willingness to maintain them, it is important to understand, for each context-specific site, what qualifies as heritage in the perception of the locals who are the ultimate heritage care-holders. Identifying what constitutes urban heritage dimensions from the locals’ point of view is critical for heritage and tourism management practice as it can determine what should be sustained and what should be changed in the integrated conservation and development efforts of a historic town. Thus, future conservation and development strategies can be informed. This article aims to develop a framework for defining the multiple, interconnected and dynamic urban heritage dimensions in a way that integrates the principle of cultural sustainability, while also acknowledges the concept of sustainable tourism development, encompassing tangible and intangible attributes as integral parts of a holistic concept of heritage values. The possibilities for using Environmental Cognition Theory to define heritage dimensions, which is fundamental for heritage management of inhabited historic towns, will be explored. The analysis draws on interviews carried out with local stakeholders at Chiang Mai, Thailand, where there are currently discussions for its nomination as a World Heritage Site. The findings show potential of using Environmental Cognition Theory to dimensionally deepen the understanding of heritage dimensions by providing an in-depth understanding of how symbolic attributes, collectively with physical attributes, play an important role in contributing to the heritage values of urban heritage elements.

Type: Proceedings paper
Title: Unpacking the heritage dimensions of historic urban systems: the case of Chiang Mai, Thailand.
Event: Future of the Past: Tourism and Cultural Heritage in Asia
Location: Kyoto, Japan
Dates: 07 August 2018 - 08 August 2019
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Publisher version: https://www.vepub.com/conferences-view/Internation...
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the version of record. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Heritage Values, Heritage Dimensions, Inhabited Historic Town, Chiang Mai, Thailand
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of the Built Environment > Bartlett School Env, Energy and Resources
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10087643
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