Emeritus Professor Peter Davis
- Email: email@example.com
Peter Davis trained as a marine biologist, oceanographer and ecologist, and worked in conservation organisations and national parks before moving into the museum world as a specialist curator. Following some twenty years in museums - his last post being Deputy Curator of the Hancock Museum - he joined the Department of Archaeology of Newcastle University, setting up the MA in Museum Studies there in 1992. Following University re-organisation he helped to found the International Centre for Cultural and Heritage Studies (ICCHS) as a distinct unit in the newly-created School of Arts and Cultures. He became the first Head of School of Arts and Cultures, relinquishing this position in 2005 to take up a part-time role at the University of Gothenburg, assisting in the development of museum and heritage programmes there. Now retired, he continues to play an active role in Media, Culture, Heritage as a Series Editor of the book series ‘Heritage Matters’ published by Boydell and Brewer. He is a Trustee of the Natural History Society of Northumbria and President of the Society for the History of Natural History.
Emeritus Professor Peter Davis has research interests in natural history museums, the history of natural history and biography of key 19th century collectors. Much of this work relates to analyzing the emergence of the conservation ethic, and the roles that museums have played in fostering it. His research on museums, botanic gardens, aquaria and zoos is primarily related to the ways in which these organisations played a role in the emergence of environmentalism, and his book Museums and the Natural Environment (1996) discusses this phenomenon.
His biographical research has focused on important scientists and collectors, and he has written several entries for the New Dictionary of National Biography (Oxford University Press), and for The Dictionary of 19th Century Scientists (Thoemmes Press/Continuum). He continues to research the life and work of the naturalist George Johnston (1797 - 1855), a doctor who did much to further the progress of natural history and museology; this work complements his co-authored book Sir William Jardine: A life in natural history (2001), a contemporary and friend of Johnston. This work is a continuation of his in-depth research into collectors and naturalists in northern England.
Community museology and new museology, and one type of museum - the ecomuseum - form a third major research interest. His book, Ecomuseums, a sense of place (1999), was the first book in English to document this global museological phenomenon from French, Spanish and Portuguese sources, so making the concepts and ideologies of ecomuseums more widely available. Peter has published extensively on ecomuseum theory and practice since 1999, particularly in relation to developments in Italy, Japan and China. A second edition of Ecomuseums, a complete revision of the worldwide situation, was published by Continuum in 2011.
He is closely involved in the development of Heritage Matters as a Series Editor; these books (based in ICCHS and published by Boydell and Brewer) cover a range of heritage issue. Peter has co-edited four volumes, namely Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage (2012), Making Sense of Place (2012), Displaced Heritage (2014) and Changing Perceptions of Nature (2017). With Michelle Stefano he edited The Routledge Companion to Intangible Cultural Heritage (2017).
Peter Davis' current research deals primarily with contemporary approaches to museology, in particular how museums deal with questions relating to communities, place and 'sense of place', local distinctiveness and cultural identity. He has a worldwide network of contacts involved in the branch of museology known as community museology or ecomuseology, and is working with colleagues in Italy, Japan, the Netherland, Brazil, India, China and Portugal to assess the impact of community-based approaches to the conservation of tangible and intangible heritage. Emerging strands within this research is the relationship between ecomuseums, community sustainability and bio-cultural conservation, so bridging the perceived gap between nature and culture.
The following students supervised by Peter Davis successfully completed research degrees:
•Alfred Hatton (Master of Philosophy): 'Museums and performance indicators' (1995).
•Eila McQueen (Master of Philosophy): 'Museums and their communities: a case study in Argyll and Bute' (1998).
•Tae Il Jeon (Master of Philosophy): 'A comparative study of the impact of marketing and marketing strategies on museums in Britain and Korea' (1999).
•Hyun Jeong Kim (Master of Letters): 'Repatriation of cultural heritage between North and South; a case study of Korea' (2001).
•Julia Cassim (Master of Philosophy): 'Cognitive and physical accessibility to museum collections of art and artefacts for visually impaired audiences' (2002).
•Anastasia Valavanidou (Master of Philosophy): 'The role and the future of technology museums in Greece' (2003).
•Rosa Yoon Ok Park (Doctor of Philosophy): 'Museums and Cultural Identity: a comparative study between Britain and Korea' (2003).
•Leslie Jessop (Doctor of Philosophy): 'The uses and limitations of the forensic method in assessing Marmaduke Tunstall's collections and Hawaiian Wicker Heads' (2004).
•Claire Loughney (Doctor of Philosophy): 'Colonialism and the development of the English provincial museum, 1823 - 1914' (2006).
•Sharon Roberts (Doctor of Philosophy): 'Childhood material culture and museum representations' (2006).
•Gabriela Petkova-Campbell (Doctor of Philosophy): 'The history and development of museums in Bulgaria' (2007).
•Susannah Eckersley (Doctor of Philosophy): 'Key factors influencing new museum building in the UK and Germany' (2007).
•Sarah Elliott (Doctor of Philosophy) 'Dams and cultural heritage in Turkey; ecomuseological solutions'(2008).
•Diana Walters (Doctor of Philosophy) 'Attracting Zealots - responses to disability in museum collections and practices in the early 21st century' (2008).
•Stephanie Hawke (Doctor of Philosophy) 'Heritage and sense of place in the North Pennines' (2011).
•Patricia Francis (Master of Philosophy) 'Philip Brookes Mason, his collections and museum building' (2011)
He acted as secondary supervisor to the following successful doctoral students:
* Han-Yin (Elly) Huang 'Local Cultural workshops and sense of place in Taiwan' (2009)
* Michelle Stefano 'Intangible Cultural Heritages in North East England' (2010)
* Justin Sikora 'Approaches to the interpretation of battlefield heritage sites' (2012)
* Jared David Bowers 'Ecomuseology and sustainable tourism in the Iwokrama region of Guyana' (2012)
Guest Professor of Museology, Museion, University of Gothenburg, Sweden, from July 2005 - June 2009
Fellow of the Museums Association
Fellow of the Linnean Sociey of London
Member of Council, Linnean Society of London
First President, Museums and Galleries History Group
Chairman, Natural History Society of Northumbria from 2003 - 2011
Member, Editorial Board, H-Museum
Member, Editorial Board, Journal of Tourism Anthropology
Member, Editorial Board, Museum History Journal
Member, Editorial Board, Museum Management and Curatorship
Member, Editorial Board, Organon
Editor, Archives of Natural History, 2012-2017
President, Society for the History of Natural History, 2018 –
Peter Davis taught at undergraduate level in several departments in the University (History; Zoology; Marine Biology, Archaeology) when he was Deputy Curator of the Hancock Museum; he developed and taught courses in ‘The history of Natural History', 'Biological Conservation', 'Ecology and Biology of Fishes' and 'Introduction to Museum Studies' amongst others. However, his main teaching roles since 1993 were at postgraduate level, especially in relation to the MA programme in Museum Studies and ICCHS' other heritage programmes. He has taught on all of these and has acted in all the roles associated with delivering them and ensuring a rewarding experience for students.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums – a sense of place. London, UK: Continuum, London, 2011.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums, societies and sustainability: contrasting global experiences. In: Heritage and Sustainable Development. 2010, Evora, Portugal: Green Lines Institute for Sustainable Development.
- Murtas D, Davis P. The Role of The Ecomuseo Dei Terrazzamenti E Della Vite (Cortemilia, Italy) in Community Development. Museum and Society 2009, 7(3), 150-186.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums and the representation of place. Rivista Geografica Italiana 2009, 116, 483-503.
- Davis P, Huang H-Y. Museums as Place. In: Bates, MJ; Maack, MN, ed. The Encyclopedia of Library and Information Sciences. London and New York: Taylor and Francis, 2009, pp.3797-3805.
- Elliott S, Davis P. Museums and Museology in the UK. In: Bates, MJ; Maack MN, ed. The Encyclopedia of Library and Information Sciences. London and New York: Taylor and Francis, 2009, pp.5363-5380.
- Corsane G, Davis PS, Hawke S, Stefano M. Ecomuseology: a holistic and integrated model for safeguarding ‘spirit of place’ in the North East of England. In: Turgeon, L, ed. Spirit of Place: between tangible and intangible heritage. Quebec, Canada: Les Presses de l'Universite Laval, 2009, pp.189-204.
- Corsane G, Murtas D, Davis P. 'Place, local distinctiveness and local identity: Ecomuseum approaches in Europe and Asia'. In: Anico, M. & Peralta, E. (eds), ed. Heritage and Identity: Engagement and Demission in the Contemporary World. London: Routledge, 2009, pp.47-62.
- Borrelli N, Corsane G, Davis P, Maggi M. Valutare un ecomuseo: come e perché. Il metodo MACDAB. Torino: Istituto di Ricerche Economico Sociali del Piemonte, 2008.
- Davis P. New museologies and the ecomuseum. In: Graham, B; Howard, P, ed. The Ashgate Research Companion to Heritage and Identity. Aldershot: Ashgate, 2008, pp.397-414.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums and sustainability in Italy, Japan and China: adaptation through implementation. In: Museum Revolutions: How Museums Change and Are Changed. Proceedings of The Museum: A World Forum. 2006, Leicester, England: Routledge.
- Davis P. Place exploration: museums, identity, community. In: Watson, S, ed. Museums and Their Communities. London and New York: Routledge, 2007, pp.53-75.
- Corsane G, Davis P, Elliot S, Maggi M, Murtas D, Rogers S. Ecomuseum Evaluation: Experiences in Piemonte and Liguria, Italy. International Journal of Heritage Studies 2007, 13(2), 101-116.
- Corsane G, Davis P, Elliott S, Maggi M, Murtas D, Rogers S. Ecomuseum Performance in Piemonte and Liguria, Italy: The Significance of Capital. International Journal of Heritage Studies 2007, 13(3), 224-239.
- Davis P. Standards, performance measurement and the evaluation of ecomuseum success. In: Communication and Exploration. 2006, Guiyang, China: Provincia Autonoma di Trento.
- Davis P, De Varine H, Maggi M, Su D, Zhang J, ed. Communication and Exploration. Trento, Italy: Provincia Autonoma di Trento, 2006.
- Su D, Davis P, Maggi M, Zhang J, ed. Communication and Exploration: Papers of the International Ecomuseum Forum, Guihzou, China. Guiyang, China: Chinese Society of Museums, 2006.
- Davis P. Standards, performance measurement and the evaluation of ecomuseum practice and success. In: Communication and Exploration. 2006, Guiyang, China: Chinese Society of Museums.
- Davis P. Places, 'cultural touchstones' and the ecomuseum. In: Corsane, G, ed. Heritage, Museums and Galleries: An Introductory Reader. London and New York: Routledge, 2005, pp.365-376.
- Davis P. Ecomuseum Evaluation. Chinese Museum 2005, 3, 34-36.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums and the democratisation of cultural tourism. Tourism, Culture, Communication 2005, 4, 45-58.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums and the Democratisation of Japanese Museology. International Journal of Heritage Studies 2004, 10(1), 93-110.
- Corsane G, Davis P, Elliott S. Could a democratic process model based on ecomuseology be implemented in Turkey?. In: Third International Meeting of Ecomuseums and Community Museums and the 10th Workshop of MINOM, the International Movement for a New Museology. 2004, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: IRES, Torino, Italy.
- Corsane G, Davis P, Elliott S. Liberating museum action and heritage management through 'inreach'. In: Third International Meeting of Ecomuseums and Community Museums and the 10th Workshop of MINOM, International Movement for a New Museology. 2004, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: IRES, Torino.
- Davis P. Backhouse Family (per. c.1770 = 1945). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/56500/2004-09.
- Davis P. Day, Francis (1829-1889). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/previous/7363/2004-09.
- Davis P. George Johnston (1797 - 1855). In: Lightman, B, ed. Dictionary of Nineteenth Century British Scientists. London & New York: Thoemmes Continuum, 2004.
- Davis P. Richardson, Richard (1663-1741). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/previous/23576/2004-09.
- Davis P. Robinson, Elihu (1734 - 1809). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/53552.
- Davis P. Sir William Jardine (1800-1874). In: Lightman, B, ed. Dictionary of Nineteenth Century British Scientists. London & New York: Thoemmes Continuum, 2004.
- Davis P. Thomas Bewick (1753-1828). In: Lightman, B, ed. Dictionary of Nineteenth Century British Scientists. London & New York: Thoemmes Continuum, 2004.
- Davis P. Thompson, John Vaughan (1779–1847). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/27273.
- Davis P, Boulger GS. Wallis, John (1714-1793). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/ref:odnb/28573.
- Davis P. Wood, William (1774–1857). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2004. Available at: http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/previous/29900/2004-09.
- Davis P. Ecomuseum approaches to the preservation of industrial heritage in the North Pennines, England. Art & Fact (Liege) 2003, 22, 57-60.
- Davis P. Gerer le plus grand ecomusee du monde: experience de Kalyna. In: Ecomusee et Musees de Societe - pour quoi faire?. 2003, Besancon, France: Federation des Ecomusees et des Musees de Societe.
- Davis P. Biodiversita e musei scientifici. Nuova Museologia 2002, 7, 18-22.
- Davis P. Biodiversity and the natural history museum: issues and opportunities. The Biology Curator 2002, 21, 17-24.
- Davis P. Musei e ambiente naturale: il ruolo dei musei de storia naturale nella conservazione della biodiversita. Bolgna, Italy: CLUEB, 2001.
- Davis PS. Museums and the promotion of environmental understanding and heritage conservation. In: McManamon,P.;Hatton,A, ed. Cultural Resource Management in Contemporary Society: Perspectives on managing and presenting the past. London: Routledge, 2000, pp.310-318.
- Davis P. Cetacea. In: Foster-Smith, Judy, ed. The Marine Fauna and Flora of the Cullercoats District. Newcastle: Penshaw Press, 2000, pp.285-296.
- Davis P. Pisces. In: Foster-Smith, Judy, ed. The Marine Fauna and Flora of the Cullercoats District. Newcastle: Penshaw Press, 2000, pp.203-284.
- Davis PS. Ecomuseums: a sense of place. Leicester: Leicester University Press, 1999.
- Davis, Peter. Museos, conservadores y etica de la conservacion. In: Fernandez, Lius Alonso, ed. Museologia y museografica. Barcelona: Ediciones del Serbal, 1999, pp.11 - 15.
- Davis PS. Sir William Jardine's account of the formation of the Ray Society. Archives of Natural History, 25 59-73 1998.
- Davis PS. Museums and the Natural Environment: the role of natural history museums in biological conservation. Leicester University Press/Cassells: Leicester, 1996.
- Davis P, Corsane G. Communities, heritage and new cultural landscapes: ecomuseological approaches. In: Roe, M and Taylor, K, ed. New Cultural Landscapes. London: Routledge, 2014, pp.118-135.
- Denes A, Koanantakool PC, Davis P, Kreps C, Hennessy K, Alivizatou M, Stefano M. Critical reflections on safeguarding culture: the intangible cultural heritage and museums field school in Lamphun, Thailand. Heritage & Society 2013, 6(1), 4-23.
- Borelli N, Davis P. Developing capacity building: reflections on Chicago's Field Museum, USA. Museum Management and Curatorship 2013, 28(5), 455-466.
- Convery I, Corsane G, Davis P. Introduction: Making Sense of Place. In: Convery, I., Corsane, G. and Davis, P, ed. Making Sense of Place: Multidisciplinary Perspectives. Woodbridge, Suffolk, UK: Boydell and Brewer, 2012, pp.1-8.
- Davis P. Lifescapes, therapeutic landscapes and the Ecomuseum. In: 1st International Conference on Ecomuseums, Community Museums and Living Communities. 2012, Seixal, Portugal: Green Lines Institute.
- Corsane G, Davis P, Stefano M, Lira S, ed. Proceedings of the 1st International Conference on Ecomuseums, Community Museums and Living Communities. Barcelos, Portugal: Green Lines Institute for Sustainable Development, 2012.
- Denes A, Davis P, ed. Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific. Bangkok, Thailand: Princess Maha Chakri Sirindhorn Anthropology Centre, 2013.
- Borrelli N, Davis P. How culture shapes nature: Reflections on ecomuseum practices. Nature and Culture 2012, 7(1), 31-47.
- Stefano ML, Davis P, Corsane G, ed. Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heriatge. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 2012.
- Stefano ML, Davis P, Corsane G. Touching the Intangible: an introduction. In: Stefano, ML; Davis, P; Corsane, G, ed. Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage. Woodbridge: The Boydell Press, 2012, pp.1-8.
- Davis P. Ecomuseums, tourism and the representation of rural France. International Journal of Tourism Anthropology 2011, 1(2), 141-153.
- Davis P, Huang H-Y, Liu W-C. Heritage, local communities and the safeguarding of 'Spirit of Place' in Taiwan. Museum & Society 2010, 8(2), 80-89.
- Jackson CE, Davis P. Sir William Jardine: A life in Natural History. London and NewYork: Continuum, 2001.
- Convery I, Corsane G, Davis P, ed. Displaced Heritage: Responses to disaster, trauma and loss. Woodbridge: Boydell and Brewer, 2014. In Press.