The CHEERS Project activities and the meetings involving experts and practitioners continue online! 
 
On September 16th and 23rd 2020, a meeting with experts has been organized by the Italian Project Partners to share experiences and discuss about the information and knowledge availability and needs looking at hazard maps and georeferenced catalogues of cultural heritage assets.
 
A large number of experts from different disciplinary fields has attended the two meetings, both in the natural hazards, cultural heritage and civil protection fields, belonging to a variety of institutions at the national, regional and local levels.
 
The meeting has been organized in two parts. 
 
In the first meeting (held on September 16th 2020), the aim was to introduce the main issues in the field of information and knowledge building for a better integration of data and mapping in Cultural Heritage (CH) and Natural Hazards (NH) fields in a so called Civil Protection (CP) perspective. In this first part there were two main presentations. The first one was by the Project Partenr Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore (Stefano Oliveri, Marco Pregnolato and Barbara Caranza), introducing the evaluation tool ATTACH developed in Cheers and the test of the tool in the Pilot Area (Trento). The second by the Italian Ministry of Cultural Heritage and Activities (Carlo Cacace and Antonella Negri) introducing the current activities of the Ministry about the development of information sources and databases for the identification and description of the heritage at risk or already involved in previous disasters. 
 
On such a basis, in the second meeting (held on September 23rd 2020), the participants have first discussed the same issues in three thematic working tables, built up according to different NH – hydraulic risk, interface fires, hydrogeological risk – and in a way to have representatives of different expertise fields in each one. The results of the discussion and findings of each group have therefore been reported to the audience for sharing and final discussion.
 
The two days’ work produced useful insights for the Cheers project. 
 
The participants have all underlined the importance of the Cheers project as it tackles a quite new issue, which is the stable integration of guidelines for the salvaging of CH assets into the Civil Protection Plans (CPP) as references for the rescue teams. 
 
In doing this, according to the importance and the high values embodied in the CH, not only the availability itself of stable and complete information and databases is relevant but also the reporting of their fragility profiles, consistency, location and exact geographical position. The interoperability itself of the information with external datasets about NH and other geospatial referenced territorial information is becoming more and more urgent, so to better monitor the CH sites and assets against many different risks. The clear integration of guidelines about CH salvaging operations in the CPPs and the pieces of information needed to better intervene in case of an emergency might therefore represent a fundamental step forward also for the stabilization of the relationships and the work on data. 
 
Moreover, the work on the integration of guidelines in CPPs is the basis for a more stable, at its turn, cooperation and sharing among different categories of experts in the CH, NH and CP fields. Experts which, right now, have only very rarely been involved in a common and continuous reflection in peace time. This should become more frequent, thus requiring new and more regular meeting and discussion opportunities for experts, practitioners, local administration bodies and other stakeholders at different territorial levels. The main aim should be the enhancement of the mutual understanding of the issues related to the salvaging of CH during emergencies, based on a parallel enhancement of the sharing of knowledge and the treasuring of past experiences. These should therefore become the references for the integration of CPPs, so to enhance the operational capabilities during the salvaging interventions. 
 
Finally, all experts underlined the need for the development of more specific training activities (as foreseen in the Cheers project) dealing with the use of evaluation tools involving a variety of disciplinary approaches and techniques to be coupled with field exercises in a cycle of knowledge sharing and learning by doing. 
 
More details about this event and the other exchange meetings in Austria and France are available in the page Technical Reports