The National Heritage Science Forum (NHSF) is a membership organisation and registered charity committed to demonstrating the public benefit of heritage science, increasing public engagement with it and support for it.

What is heritage science?

The term 'heritage science' is used to encompass all technological and scientific work that can benefit the cultural heritage sector, whether through improved management decisions, enhanced understanding of significance and cultural values or increased public engagement.


Our vision is that the understanding and preservation of the UK's extraordinarily rich and varied material cultural heritage will be enhanced by the better use of science and technology, and that the humanities, sciences and arts will be developed and enhanced by this collaboration. Heritage science will be a robust, internationally recognised, well-coordinated, vibrant and sustainable community that contributes to the big questions confronting humanity by understanding and addressing hte present needs and future requirements of cultural heritage.


  • To improve partnership within the sector and with others by increasing collaboration to help practitioners make better use of research, knowledge and innovation and to enhance resources, funding and skills, investment and profile.
  • To demonstrate the public benefit of heritage science and to increase public engagement with it and support for it.

2019-20 Prospectus

Our 2019-20 prospectus sets out our priorities for the year ahead. These are:

  • To engage the heritage sector with the new strategic framework for heritage science and coordinate its delivery.
  • To undertake policy and advocacy work that will generate an environment that is supportive of heritage science research.
  • To work in partnership with E-RIHS.UK on strengthening the research and innovation infrastructure (physical and digital) for cultural heritage.
  • To grow the Forum's membership so that it better represents the range of organisations that produce and use heritage science.

Read the 2019-20 prospectus (pdf)