Heritage interventions to improve mental health and wellbeing: Developing a programme theory through a realist-informed review

Karen Burnell, Giles Woodhouse

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Published conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

Abstract

Heritage projects to support mental health and wellbeing have become increasingly popular over the last few years, with heritage projects being socially prescribed. Perhaps due to increasing awareness and offerings, there is an assumption that heritage projects do indeed improve mental health and wellbeing. However, the evidence base is relatively scant in this area, just as one might expect for a relatively new intervention, and so we are not yet confident of the assumed outcomes, at least from the point of demonstrable, evidenced impact. To an even lesser extent are we informed as to the how and why heritage projects may create opportunity for change and improvement in mental health and wellbeing. To this end, a Realist-informed Review of the current literature was performed to attempt to answer who experiences change through heritage, how, and why.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationArchaeology, Heritage, and Wellbeing
Subtitle of host publicationAuthentic, Powerful, and Therapeutic Engagement with the Past
EditorsPaul Everill, Karen Burnell
PublisherRoutledge
Chapter3
Pages36-58
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9781003182184
ISBN (Print)9781032021652
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Jun 2022

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