The knowledge of the past makes it possible for each region and/or local community with a common historic destiny to define its place in an increasingly globalized world and to share this particularity with an audience interested in its deep roots. According to Boaventura de Sousa Santos, empirical evidence shows us that the pre-modern can be transformed into post-modern and a sustainable future will be structured on the basis of an ecology of knowledges. Hence, it can be said that revisiting the past helps to understand the current regional imbalances and disparities, contributing to overcome them and to plan a socially and economically sustainable future, based on the endogenous resources, which also has touristic potential. The Research Group “Heritages and Local and Regional Identities” is based on these assumptions and its main goals are: to develop a knowledge of material and immaterial, architectural or environmental heritage values, as well as endogenous resources that may serve as a basis for projects of sustainable development; to study traditional knowledge and forms of popular culture; to analyze the population dynamics from a historical perspective; to identify factors that promoted development or backwardness and to define ways to overcome them; to put the acquired historical knowledge at the service of the populations.
Coordinator: Margarida Sobral Neto