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Working Group

Chair: Jeremy Upton

Jeremy Upton is the Director of Library and University Collections at the University of Edinburgh, a post he took up in 2015.  His remit covers library and museum collections including the world renowned musical instrument collection held at St Cecilia’s Hall. Jeremy started his professional library career as a music librarian before moving in to general University Library Management. Prior to working in Edinburgh, he was Deputy Director of the library at the University of St Andrews.


Vice-Chair: Giuliana Tomasella

Giuliana Tomasella is full professor at the University of Padua (Italy); she teaches Museology and History of Collecting; History of Art Criticism. She is currently the Director of the University Museums Centre. She is member of the scientific committee of the Museo d’Arte Orientale di Ca’ Pesaro of Venice and is part of  the scientific committee of the forthcoming Museo della Natura e dell’Uomo (Museum of the Nature and Man) of the University of Padua. Her studies have focused on the relationships between art and politics during the Fascist period. Recently, her research is focalising on the problem of the image of the Black in European art, during the colonial period.

Focus of Working Group

The Working Group brings together researchers and practitioners working the area of cultural heritage across the Coimbra Group institutions to:

  • Understand better the unique role of heritage and the contribution it can make to the work and culture of Universities and the wider community. With their long history, many universities museums and collections had and have a very close alignment with the evolution of their towns and wider regions.
  • Identify where the membership of the Coimbra Group institutions can make a distinctive contribution to the wider discussion of heritage related issues.
  • Provide a network for individuals active in the area of cultural heritage at the Coimbra Group universities to develop their ideas and work on joint projects


Recent highlights

  • Online Collections platform (https://www.coimbra-group.eu/collections/). We have established a new site to host an online database containing information on the collections held by the Coimbra Group institutions.  The site uses the framework which was developed to host an online exhibition for the 2017 annual conference. The new site allows researchers to identify related collections held by institutions across Europe and to link through to further information about each collection.  The site provides an excellent environment for joint working.
    We will be bringing together technical experts from the Coimbra Group institutions to discuss how we can enhance the functionality of the platform further to support heritage research and collaboration.


  • Conference: Interconnecting narratives: tangible and intangible stories of science, arts and humanities in university libraries, archives and museums, Coimbra November 2019. The conference brought together academics and practitioners from Coimbra, Uppsala, Graz and Granada.


Ongoing/forthcoming activities

  • Researcher Speed Dating event, Durham. The members of the Group are using the network to facilitate the creation of new heritage related projects and grant proposals.  We have been working with colleagues from the Research Support Officers Group to explore opportunities.
    As a first step, we will be holding a speed dating event in Durham to help bring together researchers from the different Coimbra Group members with an interest in cultural heritage.  The event will be supported by the data held in the Coimbra Group online platform.


  • Scientific Instruments. The Heritage Working Group is collaborating with the Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics Working Group:
    1. to explore the possibilities of using our collections of historic scientific instruments to support innovative learning.
    2. to increase the visibility of cultural heritage of the Coimbra Group universities with the help of Digital technologies.



Contact person at the CG Office: Anna Quici (quici@coimbra-group.eu)