Describe your organisation and the unique work that it is doing. Who and what are affected by the work? How does/will the work impact people’s lives?
We launched Peripatos in 2015 with the aim of applying contemporary practices and innovative approaches in disseminating and managing cultural heritage. Over the years, Peripatos has evolved, renewed, and travelled far, embraced by people and filled with stories. Today, Peripatos is a sociocultural enterprise that imagines, designs and implements cultural projects that serve society and its progress. Our projects are of cultural nature and express the values of the community that hosts them with respect to the place and its environment. At the same time, our services are customised so as to add value to the partnering institution today, as well as long term.
Parallel to Peripatos I am working as a Business Consultant for Museums, Libraries, Archives Solutions at Uni Systems ICT company, where I am contributing to the digital transformation of cultural institutions and to the development of new products and services.
Tell us about a project that has benefited from the training you received from us? Why was the project important? Was there anything unusual or surprising about the execution of this project?
In 2016, Peripatos was selected to participate in the Tandem Turkey programme, and I travelled to Turkey as its representative. Tandem Turkey is one of the many sub-programmes of Tandem for Culture initiative, which is a cultural collaboration programme that strengthens civil society in Europe and neighbouring regions. It brings together cultural professionals from different countries to work together and implement pilot projects with a big impact. I formed a partnership with Esra from the women’s cooperative Özgür Kadın Kolektifi from Batman city of Eastern Turkey and together we proposed and got funding to implement The Hasankeyf Workshop project.
The Hasankeyf Workshop (Hasankeyf Atölyeleri) is an initiative to socially empower women of Hasankeyf in eastern Turkey through art workshops to express themselves and communicate the cultural heritage of their beautiful, historic village. The importance of the project was twofold, to support the self-expression and personal development of the women of this local community, and to advocate for the cultural heritage of Hasankeyf: a place under threat because of the Ilisu hydroelectric dam that begun operations in 2018. For this project, a total of 185 settlements in the area evacuated, including Hasankeyf, as the whole place will flood, submerging the entire cultural heritage of the region and disrupting its social cohesion.
The training I received from the MA in Heritage Management helped me in a number of ways. Firstly I was able to assess the stakeholders’ dynamics and implement a project that would support women’s need for creative outlet and link this with the greater situation happening in Hasankeyf. Through my project management class I had the tools to organise and manage a complex project involving the funding bodies, two implementing organisations, visiting trainers and the local community. The courses I had in museum management and museum education were the base of my training in designing and delivering the outreach programme of the project (art workshops, cooperative exhibition, short documentary, etc.).
One challenge Peripatos faced during the execution of this project was the financial management of the funding, as during this time there was capital control in Greece limiting us transferring money in Turkey. With my colleague, fellow alumna of the masters programme and Peripato’s managing director, Evangelia Pelentridou, we had to implement risk management practices to move forward with the project’s timeline and implementation.
At this point I would like to highlight the fact that I met my colleague and partner in Peripatos, Evangelia through the MA in Heritage Management and during our work in The Heritage Management Organization. Together we envisioned of what Peripatos is today.
Has your organisation worked on any other projects that are innovative, globally significant and can be replicated in a local market?
Peripatos has designed and implemented a series of projects both in Greece and abroad. Our services are customised so as to add value to the partnering institution today as well as long term, taking into account the values of the community that hosts them with respect to the place and its environment. Thus we are able to both replicate and scale up our projects in any type of context and place.
Just to name some of our implementations, we enjoyed the most:
What are the global issues that your project addresses (e.g., fighting climate change, preserving heritage and culture, promoting local participation, )?
Peripatos seeks to promote and manage the sociocultural heritage, since a cultural element is not completely understood outside the social frame that shaped it and there is no group, community or society lacking cultural creation and creativity. Nature is always present, completing the triptych that forms our work. In our work, we advocate access to cultural matters, gender issues, and inclusion; using cooperative, participatory methods, recycling and sustainability with responsible use of materials in our programmes.