Cultural and natural heritage is at the heart of our societies. Making this heritage more accessible to all, protecting it and knowing it better are essential to a better understanding of our history and to promote dialogue between cultures. Through sectors such as tourism and creative industries, scientific research on heritage generates significant economic benefits. Research on heritage materials (palaeontological, archaeological and cultural heritage materials) is currently undergoing a profound renewal. New research topics are emerging, such as the study of ancient environments, which provides a better understanding of mechanisms such as fossilization and the impact of societies on their environment. This renewal also involves the development of new methods, especially in imaging (3D scanners, lasers, large instruments, etc.) or data sciences, or applications to “new objects” such as old proteins (proteomics) and highly altered heritage materials. Through its interdisciplinarity, heritage research is revolutionizing the ways in which experimental sciences, human sciences and environmental sciences collaborate.
These new scientific questions will be at the heart of the World Meeting “Heritage, Sciences and Technologies” which will take place from 13 to 16 February 2019 on the occasion of the opening of the new auditorium of the Institut de France in Paris. It is also part of the development of the European Research Infrastructure for Heritage Science (E-RIHS).