Creating impact is an important issue in our POEM research. Impact has many forms and faces, beyond performance metrics it is hard to quantify, however often the non-metrical effects are the most relevant ones. Here we provide examples of POEM impact.


POEM fellows are encouraged to be published in international journals, relevant online platforms etc. For an alphabetical listing of publications from fellows and supervisors, please see here.

Tools and Services

Becoming practical and organizing change towards participatory memory practices is easy and complicated at the same time. It needs a modification of mind sets and a long breath – like all change processes. In this section we collect and provide tools and services for getting started with participatory memory practices in digital media ecologies. It provides information for mundane, practical problems in the eclectic mode of emerging questions, without aiming for completeness or systematization.

Why (not) participate?

School Memory Work – Prompt Cards

Step by Step Guide to: The Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories

Action Research and Participatory Design

Research is situated in societies and communities, where it creates impact in some form. Potential impact of research is a main, actively integrated and reflected element of action research and participatory design. The knowledge production is thus based on participatory, experimental and interventional research approaches. Here we share approaches and information on action research and participatory design in POEM.

Pluriversal Design: A Virtual Decolonising Exhibition by Asnath Kambunga and Anne Chahine

Online Exhibition MEMENTO by Lorenz Widmaier

Postcolonial Narratives of the Born Frees Exhibition by Asnath Paula Kambunga

Virtual Lecture Series

Towards an open dialogue on participatory memory making​

The Virtual Lecture Series shares POEM’s knowledge network and scientific results with interested stakeholders for transdisciplinary network building. POEM’s Virtual Lecture Series aims to open a dialogue on participatory approaches in memory making.

View and discuss the public guest lectures and keynotes by our scientific and non-academic experts at the POEM Knowledge Hubs and conferences, made available as open access video talks in our Virtual Lecture Series.

Keynote of Areti Galani on emerging values and responsibilities in the futuring of memory practices

Jérémy Lachal: Libraries as Generators of Collective Narrative and Social Inclusion

Heike Winschiers-Theophilus: Where the past is still present – Co-designing digital technologies for contemporary multi-cultural Namibia

Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories

POEM fellows created the Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories as a space to talk about the things you consider not worth preserving. The memories that you believe not worth storing for all eternity. The things that might never find a suitable place in your individual as well as the collective consciousness of our societies. In the coming two years fellows are attending a variety of different audience-centered cultural and science events, in the form of a One Stop Shop. Our One Stop Shop is an open space where we invite you, the public, to submit a memory that you would like to forget.

Best Practice

Good practice examples for participatory memory work in digital media ecologies are inspirational for rethinking memory making in Europe as more participatory, socially inclusive and future-envisioning. Below we collect and share best practice examples that connect people and groups and memory institutions while paying attention to recent (changing?) memory modalities.

Connecting to POEM: Interview with Jérémy Lachal on Bibliothèques sans Frontières

Community of Practice

POEM – Towards a Community of Practice (CoP) of Participatory Memory Work, Fostering Socially Inclusive, Future-Envisioning Memory Making in Europe

Communities of Practice (CoP) form around emerging problems or tasks of everyday life. They bring together people with varied knowledge backgrounds and levels of expertise, which matter decisively for coping with these challenges by learning from one another.

Conferences and Presentations

In order to share and to discuss their knowledge within the scientific community, all fellows gave multiple presentations at scientific conferences, organized workshops and participated in symposiums during the project. Please find a summary of all given presentations here.

 AI and life after death
Lorenz Widmaier (ESR 5, CUT) took part in the online conference KI Camp 21 in Berlin by the Bundesministerium für Bildung und Forschung (BMBF) / Gesellschaft für Informatik e.V. (GI) (27 April 2021). Find more information here

How does the intertwining of human and non-human, digital and analog affect our memories?

Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM) presented his paper “An infrastructure approach to assess the potential for participatory memory-making: A case at the Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation” at the Memory Studies Association’s Fifth Annual Conference in Warsaw (5-9 July 2021). Find more information here

SIEF2021 15th Congress: Breaking the rules? Power, participation, transgression

The POEM project participated in the SIEF2021 15th Congress Breaking the rules? of the Société Internationale d´Ethnologie et de Folklore (SIEF) which ran as a fully virtual conference from 19th to 24th June 2021.

Prof. Dr. Gertraud Koch, Samantha Lutz, Prof. Dr. Isto Huvila and Prof. Dr. Maria Economou curated the panel “Opening-up memory making: inquiries into memory modalities in digital media ecologies I“. The panel explored modalities for opening-up memory making, as digital media ecologies promise to open-up established knowledge orders by providing new modes of participation and publicness, even though participatory memory making has not emerge by itself for people in vulnerable social situations.

The POEM Fellows Cassandra Kist and Susanne Boersma presented their research on “Connecting people, connecting practices – the potential of extending participatory work into the online realm” in the Panel on “The aftermaths and futures of participatory culture in museums and heritage sector II“, which examined participatory and collaborative cultural heritage in retrospective. It explored the aftermath of the participative turn in terms of communities, digitalities and institutions and discussed the question how it has or should break the rules of established cultural heritage practices.

See programme, panel abstract and paper abstract.

Dying, death and mourning in the focus of interdisciplinary research

Lorenz Widmaier (ESR 5, CUT) presented his work at the Museum for Sepulchral Culture in Kassel at the conference TransmortaleX (21 March 2021).
Find more information here

Co-creation and co-production, community of interpretation, digital public participatory practices, empowerment, and overall impact on making history in museums

Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM) presented his paper “Accommodating users in knowledge co-production: A case of ‘Wiki Goes MEK!’” at the international Symposium Making History Together: Participatory Practices in Museums (15 December 2020) at the Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C²DH). Find more information here.

Everything Flows Festival

Myrto Theocharidou (ESR 9, CUT) participated in the talk and in the panel discussion “Happy games, happy days” with Daminos Zisimou at the digital Everything Flows Festival on the 28th of November 2020.

You can find more information here.

Online presentation of the ongoing research project by Anne Chahine (ESR 7, AU) at the panel Futures Anthropology as Interventional Theory and Practice [Future Anthropologies Network] (24 July 2020) within the conference EASA2020: New anthropological horizons in and beyond Europe.
See programme and paper abstract.

5th Biennial Conference ACHS 2020 FUTURES

The POEM project participated in the 5th Biennial Conference ACHS 2020 FUTURES of the Association of Critical Heritage Studies (ACHS) which ran as a fully virtual conference from 26th to 30th August 2020. Inge Zwart, Quoc-Tan Tran, Cassandra Kist and Suanne Boersma chaired and presented their research on “Infrastructures and future possibilities for participation”. In a second curated session, the POEM Fellows Franziska Mucha, Myrto Theocharidou, Lorenz Widmaier and Angeliki Tzouganatou discussed their preliminary findings on “Participatory memory practices: Human-centred approaches to digital heritage collections”. Anne Chahine and Asnath Kambunga were part of the stand-alone paper sessions on the sub-themes “Heritage and Time” and „Inclusive heritage through digital participation?”. The POEM-ETN was showcased in the poster presentation on “Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories: Exploring the Need to Forget Arts and Creative Practice” by Anne Chahine and Inge Zwart and in the curated session on “Digital heritage-making processes for envisioning inclusive futures” by Prof. Dr. Gertraud Koch and Samantha Lutz in collaboration with Dr. Areti Gallani (Newcastle University) and Prof. Dr. Maria Economou (University of Glasgow) in collaboration with the H2020 EU projects CoHERE and EMOTIVE.

Read the full paper here.

Infrastructural qualities of participatory memory work

Presentation titled Infrastructural qualities of participatory memory work by Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM) at the Connecting Memories 2020 Symposium, organized by the University of Edinburgh, UK (29 June 2020). The Symposium was held online via Zoom. Find more information here.

Decolonizing Participatory Design: Memory making in Namibia

Presentation of paper titled Decolonizing Participatory Design: Memory making in Namibia by Asnath Paula Kambunga (ESR 6, AU), as co-author along with her supervisors Assoc.-Prof Rachel Charlotte Smith (AU), Prof Heike Winschiers-Theophilus (NUST) and other early-stage researchers at the Participatory Design Conference PDC2020 (15-19 June 2020), which was held online. In this paper, among other things, they identify theoretical and methodological gaps in PD relating to contemporary discourses of decolonizing design and explore how more far-reaching examples of decolonizing design in practice can be created. See paper and online presentation. Here, they also hosted a workshop on Decolonising Participatory Design Practices: Towards Participations Otherwise: See paper.

Co-creating Futures with Namibian youth

Presentation by Asnath Paula Kambunga (ESR 6, AU) at the Pivot Conference 2020 “Designing a World of many Centres – Towards the Pluriverse Conference” on Co-creating Futures with Namibian youth (4 June 2020). Here, she presented a project in which she worked with Namibian youth to show collaborative efforts in futures making through an interactive exhibition. The exhibition also served the purpose of showing the importance of the historical past and present in designing futures. See abstract

Engaging children and young people in the co-production of memory through multimodal ethnographic research

Presentation by Elina Moraitopoulou (ESR 8, ASHOKA UK) of working paper titled Engaging children and young people in the co-production of memory through multimodal ethnographic research at the Remembering Children Workshop at Nottingham Trent University, UK (10-11 March 2020). The workshop dealt with the intersection of the fields of childhood and memory studies. See programme.

Digital Cultural Heritage Day at University of Uppsala

Inge Zwart (ESR 1, UU) presented her research and the POEM One Stop Shop “Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories” (OSS) at the Digital Cultural Heritage Day at the Digital Humanities Lab at UU (18 February 2020). Find more information here. ESRs Inge Zwart and Anne Chahine (ESR 7, AU) developed the concept and design for the OSS as an artistic intervention to bring ideas, discussion and research results of the network from the project to various publics and relevant stakeholder groups of the heritage sector.

Opening up Platform Economy for Accessible Digital Heritage Knowledge

Presentation of PhD project work titled Opening up Platform Economy for Accessible Digital Heritage Knowledge by Angeliki Tzouganatou (ESR 13, UHAM) at the IRS seminar Spaces of Emergence – Emergent Spaces hosted by the Leibniz Institute for Spatial Social Research in Berlin, Germany (22 January 2020). In her presentation, she discussed new business and social models for digital heritage knowledge towards an open fairer platform economy. See programme.

What do I research? Life of a PhD student

Presentation by Inge Zwart (ESR 1, UU) titled What do I research? Life of a PhD student for the master programme course Theories and Methods for ALM at Uppsala University, discussing her research project and introducing the POEM project on 14 January 2020.

Assembling infrastructures: Potentials of digital infrastructures for public engagement and participation in memory institutions

Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM) presented his unpublished paper Assembling infrastructures: Potentials of digital infrastructures for public engagement and participation in memory institutions at the internal research seminar, organized by the department of ALM at the University of Uppsala (17 December 2019) during his secondment.

Co-Creating Future Memories with Greenlandic Youth: Using Participatory Methods in Visual and Design Anthropological Framework

Conference presentation on Co-Creating Future Memories with Greenlandic Youth: Using Participatory Methods in Visual and Design Anthropological Framework by Anne Chahine (ESR 7, AU) at the joint conference Changing Climates of the Canadian Anthropology Society and American Anthropological Association (CASCA-AAA) in Vancouver, Canada (20-24 November 2019), where she further chaired the session Visual Ethics and Knowledge Creation. Find more information here.

Infrastructural becoming as a provisional process: ‘What does open mean to you?’

Presentation on Infrastructural becoming as a provisional process: ‘What does open mean to you?’ by Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM) at the international large-scale conference Infrastructures and Inequalities: Media Industries, Digital Cultures and Politics of the European Communication Research and Education Association (ECREA) at University of Helsinki, Finland (21-22 November 2019). See programme and full version of the abstract.

Fishbowl Discussion at 100th anniversary panel of the Institute of European Ethnology/Cultural Anthropology at the 42. Congress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Volkskunde [Congress of the German Society for Folklore]

Quoc-Tan Tran (ESR 10, UHAM), Jennifer Krueckeberg (ESR 11, UHAM) and Angeliki Tzouganatou (ESR 13, UHAM) took part in the Fishbowl Discussion at the 100th anniversary panel of the Institute of European Ethnology/Cultural Anthropology at the 42. Congress der Deutschen Gesellschaft für Volkskunde [Congress of the German Society for Folklore]. They worked in collaboration with students as well as other doctoral and post-doctoral researchers affiliated with the institute (7-10 October 2019). Find more information here.

Cyprus Rectors Conference: 1st Doctoral Colloquium 

Lorenz Widmaier (ESR 5, CUT) and Myrto Theocharidou (ESR 9, CUT) both participated in the CYPRUS RECTORS CONFERENCE: 1st Doctoral Colloquium (30 September 2019). This event brought together PhD students from different Universities of Cyprus. Myrto presented her PhD research at the conference. Lorenz also represented POEM and presented his research for the Cyprus Doctoral Network. Read more here.

Crafting the Future of the Visual Essay

Anne Chahine (ESR 7, AU) presented her research at the conference Crafting the Future of the Visual Essay of the Visual Anthropology Network of the European Association of Social Anthropologists at University of Antwerp (13 September 2019). The presentation dealt with the use of mixed media and collaborative storytelling in her own research. Find more information here.

The museum as a facilitator: stimulating integration of recent refugees in Berlin

Presentation by Susanne Boersma (ESR 4, SPK) on The museum as a facilitator: stimulating integration of recent refugees in Berlin at the ASA19: Anthropological perspectives on global challenges of the Association of Social Anthropology (3-6 September 2019). This was an academic conference that brought together different anthropological research projects and perspectives. See abstract.

The Future Memory Collection: An Online Archive and Virtual Exhibition Space

Presentation by Anne Chahine (ESR 7, AU) on The Future Memory Collection: An Online Archive and Virtual Exhibition Space at the international symposium The Nordic Eye (and Mind) meets the South. Visual Anthropology and Cultural Critique in the Nordic Countries and in Northern Cameroon at The Arctic University of Norway (26-28 August 2019). The presentation dealt with the use of web-based platforms as an online archive and virtual exhibition space in her own research. See programme here.

One Stop Shop “Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories”

A first showcase of the POEM One Stop Shop “Digital Archive of Forgotten Memories” (OSS) was held at the 20th anniversary conference What’s Missing? Collecting and Exhibiting Europe at the Museum of European Cultures in Berlin (SPK) by Inge Zwart along with the fellows Franziska Mucha (ESR 2, UGLA) and Susanne Boersma (ESR 4, SPK) (25 June 2019). Find programme here.

Divide-and-conquer – artistic strategies to curate the web

Presentation by Lorenz Widmaier (ESR 5, CUT) on Divide-and-conquer – artistic strategies to curate the web at the IIPC Web Archiving Conference at the National and University Library in Zagreb, Croatia (6-7 June 2019). He gave a talk about user generated, born-digital memories on the web and how society could make use of it. In relation to Work Package 2 of POEM, the talk asks how people can curate and preserve stories and memories online. Find out more about the conference here.

Das digitale Objekt [The digital object]

Presentation of research project focusing on user generated content as co-created digital objects by Franziska Mucha (ESR 2, UGLA) at symposium Das digitale Objekt [The digital object] about digital objects in museum collections (5 December 2018, Deutsches Museum in Munich). See programme and presentation.

Postdigital Day in Glasgow

Presentation of research project by Franziska Mucha (ESR 2, UGLA) at Postdigital Day at the University of Glasgow: Practice-based research day investigating the notion of post-digital (26 April 2019). Cassandra Kist (ESR 3, UGLA) also took part and presented on the question ‘Are museums post-digital?’. See programme.

Opening Conference POEM (Horizon 2020)
Participatory Memory Practices

Connectivities, Empowerment,
and Recognition of Cultural Heritages
in Mediatized Memory Ecologies

View the presentations, the keynotes, and the programme.

Daring Participation!

Online presentation of best practice and research project within POEM by Franziska Mucha (ESR 2, UGLA) at the workshop Daring Participation! of the H2020 REACH project (20 November 2018). See programme and presentation.


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Coordination and Project Management

University of Hamburg
c/o: Institute for Anthropological Studies in Culture and History
Grindelallee 46 | postbox: H8 | 20146 Hamburg | Germany

+49 (0)40 42838-9940 
POEM Uni Hamburg

Concepts, strategies and media infrastructures for envisioning socially inclusive potential futures of European Societies through culture.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under the Marie Skłodowska-Curie grant agreement No. 764859.