Networking and support

Student and Early Career Professional Mentoring Programme

The NHSF mentoring programme has been set up to enable the Forum to offer support to emerging professionals in heritage science and conservation research.

We offer students and early-career professionals (ECPs) in the UK an opportunity to develop their career pathway, research direction, or understanding of the funding landscape for research through conversations with established professionals in the field.

The mentors offer their time voluntarily and we ask them to work with a mentee for three one-hour sessions generally over a 6-month period.  This will give the mentee an opportunity to gain insight and advice on certain work and related issues, but also a taste of the benefits and possibilities of mentoring, and how it might be of use to them in future.

Call for mentors & mentees is currently closed.

Seminar series to showcase emerging heritage science researchers and students

The Icon Heritage Science Group (HSG) and National Heritage Science Forum (NHSF) jointly ran a series of four seminars between May and September 2022 to showcase the work of emerging heritage science researchers.

Each event featured two short talks of 10-15 minutes from emerging researchers and students, plus a talk from a more experienced professional about their career path. The series embraced all aspects of heritage science and aimed to connect researchers and provide a safe space to discuss ideas and progress. The talks were followed by an open question/discussion session in which all attendees were encouraged to take part.

The seminars were online via Zoom and free to attend. The current series has finished, but if you would be interested in presenting and discussing your research at a future session, please email

Thursday 8th September, 16.00-17.30 (BST) 

Sarah Critchley - MSci Natural Science Student, University of Cambridge - "An investigation into the synthesis and degradation of artificial copper blue pigments".

Celia Chari - PhD candidate Faber Lab, Materials Science, Caltech California Institute of Technology - "Meissen Mysteries: Decoding the structure and technology of 18th century European gold-based porcelain glazes".

Prof Eleanor Schofield, Deputy Chief Executive, Mary Rose Trust

Thursday 5th May 2022, 16.00-17.30 (BST)

Abed Haddad – Assistant Conservation Scientist, The Museum of Modern Art New York - “Foundations of a Great Metaphysical Style”: Unraveling Giorgio de Chirico’s Early Palette

Antanas Melinis – SEAHA CDT Research Student UCL Institute of Archaeology - Conditions for the safe storage of early glass (presentation, pdf)

Dr Paola Ricciardi – Senior Research Scientist at The Fitzwilliam Museum - Zookeeper at the Fitz (presentation, pdf)

Thursday 9th June 2022, 16.00-17.30 (BST) 

Victor Jefferys - Conservation Scientist, National Museum of the Royal Navy - Investigating the potential use of inorganic nanoparticles as antifungal agents for pre-treating timber on HMS Victory (presentation, pdf)

Tamar Hestrin-Grader, Marie-Noëlle Grison, Annelena de Groot, Maria Laura Petruzzellis, Gadis (Adis) Fitriana Putri, Glennis E. Rayermann - "Having fun feeling lost: developing methodology to investigate the heritage science ecosystem"

Prof. Ian C. Freestone - Professor of Archaeological Materials and Technologies, Institute of Archaeology, UCL - will speak about his own career path and give tips to any interested listeners on developing a career in this field.

Thursday 7th July 2022, 16.00-17.30 (BST)

Marie De Groeve - PhD candidate, University of Antwerp, Cultural Heritage Sciences - "The effect of vertical urban greening on historical building materials" (presentation, pdf)

Cathryn Harvey - PhD candidate, Cranfield Forensic Institute, Cranfield University - "Investigating the infestation: Understanding and communicating deathwatch beetle activity on HMS Victory" (presentation, pdf)

Dr Christian Baars - Head of Collection Care Department at National Museums Liverpool


New platform launched to support networking and career development of heritage science students and early career researchers (ECRs)

Following the two workshops held in March 2021, we've set up a Slack workspace as a first step in supporting the development of a network amongst heritage science students and Early Career Researchers.

Our intention is that the topics for discussion are driven by the student and ECR community, aligned to different 'channels' of interest - but the students and ECRs we've been in touch with have said they'd like the network to be open to people at all stages in their career to help them develop links with other researchers and practitioners and to bring a range of experiences to the discussions on the platform.

We'd also like the community to co-design some simple guidance on use, so that people know what to expect from the workspace and how to engage with it.

If you'd like to join the Slack workspace, please email Caroline Peach to receive a link.