- Center of Scientific Studies on Cultural Heritage, Chinese Academy of Sciences
Founded in 2004, this Center is an unincorporated organization, relying on and affiliated with the IHNS, led by a Director and supervised by a Scientific Commission. The leader of the Commission is the Director of the IHNS. Members of the Commission are composed of representatives from the relevant departments and agencies, all of whom are appointed by CAS. The Director of the Centre is appointed by CAS. At present, the Center has 23full-time and part-time researchers, including 10Professors, 8Associate Professors, 4Assistant Professors and 1Assistant, some of whom are researchers at other institutions. Its present Director is associate Prof. GUAN Xiaowu.
The center lays stress on building an interdisciplinary, cross-institution and open academic platform to establish partnerships with relevant academic institutions domestically and internationally, and to make good use of their advantages. It carries out studies mainly in the fields of history of technology, scientific archeology and cultural heritage. Its scholars employ a wide range of methodologies used in the fields of history of technology, scientific archeology, anthropology, folklore and sociology for investigating China’s rich legacy of traditional arts and crafts. In their scientific archaeology research, they aim to reveal the scientific and technological meaning, function and value of historical relics and sites, in particular reflecting significant technological inventions. The Center will pay special attention to ancient metals, using physical and chemical testing, simulated experiments and other methods. To this end, the Centre is involved in the construction of a laboratory at the IHNS (see section 1.6.3 above).
At present, some of the researchers in the Center undertake not only research on cultural heritage, but also on the creation and transmission of scientific and technological knowledge. The Center is also conducting the project “Zheng He’s Voyages and Digital Reconstruction of his Warships” in collaboration with Wuhan University of Technology. It has hosted a series of lectures on traditional arts and crafts, and scientific archaeology.
In 2013, it cooperated with the Shanghai Institute of Optics and Fine Mechanics, CAS, the Shanghai Institute of Ceramics, CAS,USTC, and other institutes, and further projects are planned on scientific studies and protection of tangible cultural heritage using the latest methods and approaches
Chief: GUAN Xiaowu