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Memory Across Borders: Dealing with the Legacy of Disputed Territories

Project description

Management of competing memories of disputed territories across borders

Territorial disputes are major causes of international conflict. To understand the reasons for this, researchers are studying how the past is collectively remembered and understood. An important aspect is the perspectives and identities of the actual communities and individuals involved. In this context, the EU-funded DisTerrMem project will bring together researchers and non-academic partners to develop an innovative transnational, interdisciplinary and multi-level approach. They will shed light on the pressing problem of managing competing memories of disputed territories across borders. Working across three regions (Europe, South Asia and South Caucasus), the project will explore the management of competing memories in non-conflictual ways. It will identify examples of good practice.


DisTerrMem is an integrated programme of training and mobility opportunities for researchers and non-academic partners, who will co-create an innovative transnational, interdisciplinary and multi-level approach to the pressing problem of managing competing memories of disputed territories across borders. Taking an interdisciplinary collaborative approach, the planned secondments and training will share and extend interdisciplinary knowledge. Methods to share knowledge will include cross-disciplinary seminar series, the co-production of literature reviews and a shared methodological and theoretical framework, the organisation of internal conferences and summer schools, the production of jointly-authored academic publications, as well as an international conference.
These activities will facilitate the co-creation of a new theoretical and methodological approach to a significant problem. Dealing with competing and often antagonistic memories of disputed territory remains a pressing challenge not just within the EU, but globally. However, the solution to such tensions is not necessarily the formulation of a ‘shared’ memory of such territories, which in any case may prove difficult to achieve. As a recent report of the European Parliament (2013: 5-6) notes, while historical memory is already disputed at the national level, beyond the national frame ‘the perception of the past proves all the more heterogeneous and problems for having a collective memory or even defining common historical landmarks are multiplied.’ Researchers on this project will receive the training necessary for them to address the challenge of managing competing memories of disputed territories in three key regions (Europe, South Asia and the South Caucasus), producing insights into best practice that will be useful to policymakers at the national and supranational level, to civil society groups and to cultural practitioners.



Net EU contribution
€ 170 200,00
Claverton down
BA2 7AY Bath
United Kingdom

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South West (England) Gloucestershire, Wiltshire and Bristol/Bath area Bath and North East Somerset, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Other funding
€ 0,00

Participants (5)

Partners (1)