The European Commission's 2014 Communication "Towards an integrated approach to cultural heritage for Europe" underlined the importance of maximising the intrinsic, economic and societal value of cultural heritage, in order to promote cultural diversity and inter-cultural dialogue.

The Expert Group on Cultural Heritage was established under the Horizon 2020 Work Programme 2014 for the Societal Challenge 5 'Climate action, environment, resource efficiency and raw materials'.

According to the experts:

"Cultural heritage is a significant force for 21st century Europe. Not only is it at the heart of what it means to be European, it is being discovered by both governments and citizens as a means of improving economic performance, people’s lives and living environments"

This expert report provides the rationale for setting a renewed European Research & Innovation policy agenda on cultural heritage.

The group was chaired by Dr. Philippe Busquin, former Commissioner for Research, Science and Technology and former Member of the European Parliament and comprised nine renowned experts from the private and public sector.