The MA programme in Sustainable Heritage Management (SHM) at Aarhus University provides you with the competences needed to meet the multiple challenges of contemporary heritage management. Working with cultural and natural heritage means taking responsibility for the links between humanity and its past. But heritage is also an integral part of the present, and a resource for the future. Managing heritage is no easy task: it includes attending to not only the survivability and inherent qualities of sites, objects and traditions, but also to the different claims and stakes that often surround them. The SHM programme equips you, through theory and practice, to work in the exciting and expanding as well as increasingly complex heritage field. You will be trained in a uniquely interdisciplinary environment to asses, retain and sustain heritage and to develop, revise and innovate the future shapes of the sector.
In all its forms, heritage is crucial for the collective memories and sustainability of communities as well as for the personal development of individuals, as it addresses the links between selves and others, temporally as well as geographically. As such, heritage can be seen as a crucial aspect of modern existence in a world of change. It can also be a potent economic, environmental and political asset that can be utilised for various ends. Heritage, for these same reasons, is not inherently “good”, and is sometimes put to work in ways that that alter and compromise local communities and conditions in questionable ways. The Aarhus SHM program qualifies you to analyse and respond to the ethics of heritage work, providing not only a sophisticated academic framework, but also a solidly grounded, practice-based set of skills and know-how. You will learn to tackle the future challenges of heritage management on local as well as global scales. The questions and challenges are manifold:
Heritage studies and heritage management is a highly interdisciplinary field, involving methodologies and approaches from various disciplines. The SHM programme is anchored in an interdisciplinary research environment that includes scholars from archaeology, anthropology, intellectual history, aesthetics, history, museology, cultural studies, evolutionary studies, and digital design. During your studies, you will thus not only work with material forms of cultural heritage, but also with textual data and, not least, people and people’s perceptions of heritage. The program revolves around and intersects with the revamped Moesgård Museum south of Aarhus, affording unique collaborative opportunities and potentials for students and staff in this university-museum environment.
Our focus on management will equip you with knowledge and skills for operating with heritage in institutional contexts, such as museums, heritage and planning agencies, municipal and city councils and in international organisations, private enterprises and civic organisations. There are multiple different career paths within the field of heritage management. In your second year of the SHM programme, you have the option to specialise within one subfield, or you can choose to apply and develop your knowledge and skills in practice through an internship. Of course, should you wish to embark on a research career, as an SHM graduate you also have the option of applying for PhD positions in Aarhus or elsewhere.
Video presentation by Andres Dobat, Assistant Professor and programme coodinator
Bachelor’s degrees in the following subjects qualify applicants for the Master’s degree programme in sustainable heritage management:
Based on an individual assessment, the board of studies decides whether applicants with any other basis for admission have academic qualifications which can be regarded as the equivalent of those outlined above.
English at B level at upper-secondary school or the equivalent is a requirement for admission: read about English language requirements.
In the following graphical presentation of the subject you can see the different modules and courses that, in addition, link to the course catalogue where you can read the course descriptions.
As a student it is important to know the regulations for your chosen subject: what is the content, how is it structured and what does it require from you. You can find this information in the academic regulations.
The MA in Sustainable Heritage Management is based at Moesgård – an old manor house located just south of Aarhus. Here you have access to a library, copying, computers, a common room, lunch room, the Moesgård Museum, and beautiful countryside, less than 2 kilometres from the beach.
Photo: media Moesgård
You also have plenty of opportunities for taking an active part in student life.
The following services are available:
Photo: media Moesgård
-experienced, photographed and filmed by the students themselves.
With thousands of pictures #yourniversity gives insight into the everyday life as a student at AU; the parties, procrastination, exams and all the other ways you’ll spend your time at university.
Photo: UNESCO Samlingerne, Moesgård
An MA in Sustainable Heritage Management equips you with skills and qualifications to fulfil positions in a number of job markets and industries, depending of your area of specialisation. Possible career paths include employment in the museum and archival sectors, in planning and development agencies and bodies, within resource management and capacity building, as well as within tourism and the creative industries. Many of the challenges that you will be trained to meet are transnational and international in scope.
Photo: Creative Commons, Timquijano
Furthermore, an MA in Sustainable Heritage Management qualifies students who wish to embark on a research career to apply for PhD positions at the university or abroad, an option that may include collaboration with national or international institutions, organisations or private companies. Visit au.dk for more information about PhD degree programmes at the Faculty of Arts at Aarhus University.
Photo: Grafisk Tegnestue, Moesgård
You can read more about the career services that are available from Arts Karriere who provide information about employment opportunities as well as arranging various events and workshops.