A comprehensive picture of sites affected by geohazards is not available as yet. Only some of the endangered sites are inscribed on the World Heritage in Danger list, which was defined in accordance with Article 11 of the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage in 1972, and mainly includes sites threatened by armed conflicts, accelerated deterioration, calamities and cataclysms, and rapid urban or tourist development.

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PROTHEGO makes an effort to fill this gap, and applies novel space technology based on radar interferometry (InSAR) to monitor monuments and sites in Europe which are inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List (WHL) and are potentially unstable due to geohazards.

Remotely sensed information on ground stability and motion are combined with geohazard datasets available for Europe to identify the most endangered sites across Europe.

Local scale geological interpretation, advanced modelling and field surveying will be carried out for these sites, to determine the causes and the extent of the observed motions and to provide an enhanced understanding of any geological processes affecting the heritage properties. At least one site in each project partner's country (i.e. Italy, UK, Cyprus and Spain) is used to demonstrate the methodological approach.

PROTHEGO's goals are to:

  • enhance cultural heritage management practices at national level
  • reinforce institutional support and governance through knowledge and innovation
  • identify, assess and monitor risks
  • strengthen disaster preparedness at heritage properties in the future