Posts Tagged ‘long term’

Radiation Safety Authority follows

Monday, November 15th, 2021

In the new report “Redovisning av regeringsuppdrag om metoder för säkerställande av information och kunskap över lång tid för slutförvaret för kärnbränsle” (SSM rapport 2021:24), the Swedish Nuclear Safety Authority has been documenting known methods for achieving long-term memory in relation to nuclear waste repositories.

The report makes reference to the key literature and documentation in the field globally, while also discussing the specific situation in Sweden. We have long been in touch with the two authors Carl-Henrik Pettersson and Annika Bratt, and so it is not surprising that the work of Linnaeus University on this topic, both in Sweden and internationally, is mentioned on several occasions. This includes in particular a short separate discussion of the 2019 workshop Information and Memory for Future Decision-Making – Radioactive Waste and Beyond run by the Swedish Nuclear Waste Council in Stockholm and the VINNOVA project on Memory Across Generations it led to. There is also a short discussion of our research project Ett hundra tusen år bakom och framåt i tiden – arkeologi möter kärnbränsleförvaring supported by the Swedish Nuclear Fuel and Waste Management Co back in 2012-2015.

We are still very involved in these issues, at the moment mostly as part of an expert group at the OECD’s Nuclear Energy Agency.

Lessons from heritage for nuclear waste disposal sites

Wednesday, November 10th, 2021

Cornelius Holtorf presented a paper by him together with Anders Högberg at the Interdisciplinary research symposium on the safety of nuclear disposal practices: Technical and Social Approaches to Managing the Hazardous Legacy of Nuclear Power Generation (10-12 Nov 2021) arranged by the Federal Office for the Safety of Nuclear Waste Management in Germany (BASE).

The paper was entitled “Lessons from archaeology and heritage studies for the long-term preservation of records, knowledge and memory concerning deep geological disposal sites for nuclear waste” and its abstract is available as part of the conference proceedings at

The Future of the World (and Heritage)

Monday, May 18th, 2020

In a very insightful work, Jenny Andersson addressed the history of The Future of the World (2018), discussing Futurology, Futurists and The Struggle for the Post-Cold War Imagination.

It emerges that from the mid 1960s to the mid 1970s, future research was a frontier of the social sciences. According to Andersson, this was the heyday of the  ‘long term’ as a category of control and management. It was also the time of the 1964 Venice Charter and the 1972 World Heritage Convention, when heritage began to be managed for the long term. But then something happened:

Against a post-war notion of the future as the ‘long term’ stood a distinctly different idea of the future as a field of resistance, love, and imagination. According to the latter, the future was not a logical and foreseeable construct, but a domain of active human consciousness, transcendence, and being. As future studies somehow married futurology by the mid-1970s on and the different strands of future research came together in a dominant idea of expertise, it was this radical content that was lost. (original context)

Arguably, in the realm of heritage, this alternative future now lost was connected to stories about a heritage associated with early matriarchy, the Celtic druids and native ancestral wisdom.

Are these strands of heritage on the way back, now that climate change and other crises put the need for an alternative future back on the agenda? Do we still need World Heritage in the ‘long term’?