Call for papers: Repurposing Churches


The renowned magazine “Die Denkmalpflege”, published by the association of monument offices in the federal states of germany, invites you to submit current papers on the subject of church conversion:

Churches loosing their function and being repurposed is nothing new. Apart from well-known historical cases such as the Hagia Sophia in Istanbul, a number of recent examples from the Netherlands, the United Kingdom and East Germany show how the conversion of houses of worship for purposes ranging from dwellings to offices to cultural venues has been going on since the 1970s. Yet in the past twenty years this development in Germany has taken on a very different dynamic and we asume parallels allover Europe. The situation and its causes have been widely analysed and a wealth of experience gained, both in how best to handle the loss of function by secular repurposing, demolition or transfer to a different religious community. Many publications and conferences devoted to the topic. Now it seems to be time for a review:

We are looking for examples that have been proven to be viable, in economic terms as well as in terms of monument preservation, and maybe even left the framework of usual new Functions such as kindergarden, columbarium or concert hall leave.

In addition to case studies and overviews, we are also looking for discussions of how the process of repurposing should be prepared and overseen: How can all those affected be involved in the process right from the start and in such a way that good solutions are found? Which urban-planning and sociological dimensions have to be borne in mind? Which general conditions might need adjustment? What should be the role of the state – besides overseeing the preservation of historical monuments – if even the non-Christian majority of society regards these buildings as landmarks? Also worthy of consideration as a source of ideas and inspiration would be the situation abroad.


Brief exposés can be submittet to the editorial board by 17 May 2023 to

A little bit of history

A European Heritage Summit was first organized in London on 26–28 April 2006 by Dr. Simon Thurley, former Chief Executive Officer of English Heritage. The mission of the Summit was to gather for the first time the European cultural heritage leaders who had the opportunity to exchange their experience and initiate common actions. It was attended by 23 European states which agreed in the Final Statement to continue to meet annually as a forum of European heritage heads, known as the “European Heritage Heads Forum”. Future hosting countries are chosen by general agreement at the annual meeting.

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Place Saint-Géry 23, 1000 Brussels

Cookie policy - Privacy policy
Copyright © European Heritage Heads Forum
All rights reserved.