Dr Guilherme Pozzer is a postdoctoral fellow at the Institute for Social Movements at the Ruhr University Bochum (GER). He is a historian, with over 10 years of research training (PhD-European Doctorate, University of Minho-Portugal/University of Seville-Spain; MPhil and BA+2 in History, Unicamp-Brazil). His research interests lie broadly in Industrial Heritage, Memory, Industrial Archaeology, Urban History, Social History. He is experienced in qualitative research methodologies, in particular on analysing historical data from the perspective of Industrial Archaeology combined with Social Semiotic and the hermeneutic framework. His PhD research is about a Portuguese partially abandoned industrial site to understand the role of its material culture and its symbolic and social meanings in processes of memory making and heritage making. His MPhil research analysed the urban impacts of a railway station in Brazil and how its symbolic meanings changed over the years, from its primary function to a preserved heritage site, until it came to be reused as a cultural centre after the railway traffic ceased. His current postdoctoral research seeks to understand how current uses and community management of Industrial Heritage contributes to build practices of memory making and identity making and their impacts on communities’ wellbeing in contexts of deindustrialization.
Memories, identities, and wellbeing in post-industrial communities
Particularly in post-industrial contexts, communities are frequently put aside in decision making processes concerning their own heritage and are excluded as active social subjects in processes of heritage making that should compose its own identity and to which their memories are connected. In this regard, there is also a gap in Industrial Heritage studies regarding the impacts of these processes on community wellbeing. Thus, my research addresses how current uses and different levels of community engagement with industrial heritage contributes to build practices of memory making and identity making and their impacts on communities’ wellbeing in contexts of deindustrialization through case studies in Europe. This will provide the proper European context on the relationship between communities and heritage institutions of reference by asking how deindustrialized heritage sites have been used, managed, and preserved while simultaneously considering the perspective of post-industrial communities’ inclusion in the process of heritage making and conservation.