Heritage, health and wellbeing: how the past can help us feel good in the present

External online event - Kyushu University, Japan

Thursday 27 January, 2022
5:00pm JST


Professor Simon Kaner (Sainsbury Institute)

About the talk

The Covid-19 pandemic has presented unprecedented challenges to the heritage sector, in particular museums and archaeological parks, around the world. The pandemic struck just as awareness is increasing of the potential health benefits of engaging with cultural heritage, especially for people vulnerable through pre-existing issues, notably around mental health. This presentation will consider the potential for Cultural Heritage Therapy in a Japanese context. It will introduce some examples from the UK, and suggest how the approaches being developed could be applied in settings such as World Heritage sites as well as other places prized locally for their heritage value. The talk will draw on work undertaken by the speaker in conjunction with two UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Japan (the Sacred Island of Okinoshima and the Associated Sites in the Munakata Region, and Jomon Sites of Northern Tohoku and Southern Hokkaido), and other initiatives designed to bring Japanese archaeology to a wider audience.

This event is part of a series titled “Reiterations of the Past: Reconstructions, Practices, and Places,” which is made possible by a Kyushu University Progress 100 Strategic Partnership Acceleration Grant (AY2019–2021). For further information, please contact

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