In the days from October 7th to 9th, 2021, the physical part of the first Transnational Project Meeting (TPM 1) in the Erasmus+ project Cultural Heritage Protection in Climate Change online (CHePiCC online) took place at the premises of the University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria. Due to the Covid-19 pandemic the international partners had to kick-off their project in June 2021 with a virtual event but now took the chance to come together and meet in person for the first time during their joint work.

The core element and main outcome of CHePiCC online will be a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) on Cultural Heritage Protection in times of climate change and an increasing number of natural catastrophes all over Europe. The MOOC will consist of four main modules dealing with different aspects in this context and providing an overview of that manifold topic. All information disseminated in the course – be it of theoretical or practical nature – will be accompanied with diverse case studies drawing a picture of the various challenges affected sites all over Europe face. Since the course shall also have a specific focus on European cultural landscapes, the CHePiCC online strategic partnership was made up of six qualified institutions with complementing fields of expertise based in different regions of Europe spanning from Norway in the north to the Canary Islands in the south.

Thus, the main objective of the meeting was to consult on the definite structure of the MOOC, its contents as well as the division of work in the various modules which will be elaborated jointly. Further steps in the collaborative work and the next milestones in the preparation of the online course were defined and agreed on. Finally, first ideas for the concept of the Summer University offered as supplementary physical part in addition to the MOOC dealing with cultural landscapes in climate change were presented by the colleagues of the Norwegian University of Science and Technology who will host the test event that will take place at Trondheim (Norway) in early summer 2022.

With the strong focus on cultural landscapes in CHePiCC online taking into account the various appearances, characteristics and individual needs of cultural and natural landscapes in the different regions all over Europe, it was a great opportunity for the partnership to visit and discover the far Southern cultural landscape of Risco Caído and the Sacred Mountains of Gran Canaria – a mountainous area of rich biodiversity and characterised by dry stone walls and cave settlements built by a pre-Hispanic society about 2000 years ago – which is the only cultural landscape inscribed in the UNESCO world heritage list of the Canary Islands.

In February 2022 the first test run of the MOOC will start as a two-month online course in eight parts on different aspects of cultural heritage protection, climate change, cultural landscapes and preparedness measures. It will be provided by the iMooX platform and open for any interested participants. We’ll keep you up to date.

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