The Historic Preservation Program’s research center is the Center for World Heritage Research and Stewardship. The mission of the Center is to create programs, professional projects and public education initiatives in heritage conservation; support conservation objectives through management of resources including historic structures, landscapes, archives, collections, ethnic/ cultural traditions and practices, historical sites, and natural resources; support public and private groups that work in the heritage tourism and conservation field; and ensure that students are global thinkers.

The Center for World Heritage Research and Stewardship is dedicated to research and education in the documentation, conservation, and management of historic places and cultural resources. The Center helps fulfill the mission of the University of Florida by facilitating strategic partnerships, projects, and programs for Historic Preservation and other units within the College of Design, Construction and Planning and across campus.

Within the Center for World Heritage Research and Scholarship are three research initiatives: Envision Heritage, Preservation Institute Nantucket, and Preservation Institute St. Augustine.

Envision Heritage: Launched by the Historic Preservation Program in 2012, the University of Florida’s Envision Heritage explores how new and emerging digital technologies can be used to document, preserve, and interpret heritage sites. The research projects utilize laser scanning, photogrammetry and imaging from drones, among other technologies.

  • Projects and partners include, among others:
    • Chaiwatthanaram Temple Complex, Thailand, World Monuments Fund
    • Ishtar Gate Digital Interpretation, Iraq, World Monuments Fund
    • Envision Nantucket, Nantucket Preservation Trust and Nantucket Community Preservation Committee
    • Digital Documentation of Georgetown City Hall, National Trust of Guyana
    • Roebuck Street Digital Documentation, Barbados, Roebuck Street Redevelopment Trust
    • Shwenandaw Kyaung Digital Documentation, Myanmar, World Monuments Fund
    • Vizcaya Barge, Grotto, and Village, Miami, Vizcaya Museum and Library

Preservation Institute Nantucket: Established in 1972, the Preservation Institute Nantucket is the oldest continuously operating field school in the United States. The abundant historic resources of the island give students an opportunity to receive a specialized educational experience in a broad range of preservation topics using Nantucket as a resource for case-study projects to document, research, and help conserve the island’s remarkable heritage. The evolution of PINs projects mirrors the evolution of the preservation field over the past fifty years. While early PIN projects focused on building documentation and research for HABS- level production, more recent projects have expanded both in scale (building, street, neighborhood, village, island) and in scope, to include interdisciplinary research that examines the intersection of resilience and heritage.

The Preservation Institute Nantucket celebrates 50 years in 2022. For more information please see the PIN50 page.

Sherburne Hall Studio. Photography by Paul Privette

Preservation Institute St. Augustine/Envision Lab: Established in 2017 and founded on the Preservation Institute Nantucket model, Preservation Institute St. Augustine (PISA) was created to offer specialized training in the documentation of historic buildings and laboratory analysis and conservation of architectural materials and finishes. The work of PISA informs ongoing efforts to preserve America’s oldest city.

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