The preservation enterprise helps fashion the physical contours of memory in public space, and thus has the power to curate a multidimensional and inclusive representation of societal values and narratives. Increasingly, the field of preservation is being challenged to consider questions of social inclusion, of how multiple publics are—or are not—represented in heritage decision-making, geographies, and governance structures. Community engagement is increasingly being integrated into project-based preservation practice, but the policy toolbox has been slower to evolve. Recognizing how preservation and other land use decisions can both empower and marginalize publics compels greater reflection on preservation’s past and future and collective action beyond the project level. This requires professionals and institutions to consider systemic policy change with integrity, sensitivity, and intentionality.
Bringing together a broad range of academics, historians, and practitioners, this second volume in the Issues in Preservation Policy series documents historic preservation’s progress toward inclusivity and explores further steps to be taken.