Associate Prof Dr Thomas Cauvin has been appointed to Head of the Department of Public History at University of Luxembourg’s Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C2DH). Prof Dr Cauvin joined the C2DH in 2020 in the framework of his 2 MEUR FNR ATTRACT Fellowship.
Thomas Cauvin’s FNR ATTRACT project proposes to develop historical practices in public and digital spaces to include, empower and engage public groups in critical debates on the contemporary history of Luxembourg and Europe while maintaining ethical and methodological standards.
FNR ATTRACT Fellow Thomas Cauvin, photo (c) Natalie Stacker
The project goes beyond digital technology and citizen science and applies participatory practices to public history as a whole. Focusing on economic development and community uses of Luxembourg’s industrial heritage, the project will develop innovative models and guidelines to encourage history in public spaces. With the goal to make public history the new citizen science of the past, Thomas Cauvin’s team also works with multiple partners to support new history courses in universities so that students can communicate, share and use history in and with the public. As an expert in international public history training, Cauvin also coordinates online public history workshops with European partners and offer the first Summer University on European Digital Public History.
“Luxembourg offers an ideal framework for the development of participatory research models. Luxembourg’s multicultural and multilingual environment provides a privileged context for answering European questions on community spaces, national identities and common pasts. Thanks to the support of the FNR and the University of Luxembourg, my interdisciplinary team is able to work with a dozen partners in Luxembourg and throughout Europe to promote a more public and participatory history.” – Ass. Prof Dr Thomas Cauvin
In May/ June 2022, Cauvin launched the second edition of his book “Public History: a Textbook of Practice” (Routledge). The book explores opportunities and challenges encountered by public history practitioners in the field. Six years after the first edition, renewed attention is given to the increasingly international dimension of public history, its fast-changing digital practices, and the renewed debates on what it means to work for, on, with, and among the public.
The FNR’s ATTRACT programme is designed for researchers not yet established in Luxembourg, who demonstrate the potential to become leaders in their field of research. The scheme offers promising junior researchers the opportunity to set up their own research team within one of the country’s research institutions. The financial contribution by the FNR can be up to 1.5 MEUR for Starting Investigators (Postdoc & Junior Researcher level) or 2 MEUR for Consolidating Investigators (Established Researcher level). Projects have a lifespan of 5 years.