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2015 · Cultural and Natural Heritage on the First Cataract of the Nile

Cologne & Aswan · August 24 - September 13, 2015


The Summer School will take place in Cologne and Aswan. A international group of 20 students of different disciplines from Aswan and Cologne – coming from Egypt, Germany, Bangladesh, Mexico, Serbia, United States of America –will study and work together for three weeks. A high standard program will be taught by a team of lecturers from Egypt, Germany France and UK through different formats: lectures, seminars, reading groups, field trips, explorative field research projects.

The Summer School Curriculum consists of three main sections:

Approaches to Heritage

This section will introduce to the most important aspects of current heritage discourses and practices through a series of lectures, seminars and reading groups. Topics will be, among others: environmental and heritage law, heritage, cultural diversity and human rights, new concepts of biocultural heritage, tangible vs. intangible heritage and material culture, World Heritage etc. It will prepare the students to understand and recognize the multidisciplinary nature of heritage studies and the nature-culture integrating focus of the Summer School.

Thematic Blocks

The second section consist of three main thematic blocks, each of them targeting a bundle of objectives to be achieved. Their topics are perfect representation and manifestation of culture-nature interaction and interdependence.

Thematic blocks are

  1. Religious Heritage – living and dead
  2. The First Cataract Region as Cultural Landscape
  3. Daboka – the Camel Trade and its Impact on Natural and Cultural Heritage.

Teaching will be mainly through creating interactive conditions where the students from different disciplines will be able to learn from each other as much as from lecturers, professionals and local experts. The participants will be given the chance to visit all relevant sites, meet the important stakeholders and get involved with local people.

Explorative Field Research Projects

The third section, starting at the end of the first week parallel to the other sections, will introduce students to the relevant research methodologies to plan and conduct short explorative field research projects in small groups. It will give them the chance to implement and examine the skills and knowledge they have acquired during the first and second week. The field projects will start in the second but concentrate on the last week of the Summer School, and each student group will have a mentor to provide guidance, help and support.

At the end of the third week each group of students will present the outcomes of the project in a format of their choice.