The cultural turn of the mining area of Nord

Turning cultural mining basin of the Nord: prospects and limits of a transition to a cultural and tourist economy

Monday, March 21, 2016 – Lens: 9 h 30 – 19 h

Seminar organized by the University of Paris-Sorbonne (ENeC) and the University of Paris 1 Panthéon – Sorbonne (IREST).

Edith FAGNONI, Professor of geography, University of Paris-Sorbonne (ENeC UMR 8185 and EIRST) and Geraldine DJAMENT-TRAN, lecturer in geography, University of Strasbourg (SAGE UMR 7363 and EIRST)

Territories in crisis, seeking redevelopment and revitalization, are particularly likely to regain a place on the world stage. The specificity of the context of the Nord shall be construed as a real school case, a 'laboratory' registering from 2012, with the inscription in the mining world heritage of humanity and the inauguration of the Louvre-Lens, between heritagization process and innovation process.

This seminar intends to follow this cultural turn taken by the industrial basin. It will take place partly in the Louvre-Lens (auditorium) and part on-site 11/19 (dumps, production facilities and working-class cities) with the participation of the country of art and history of the agglomeration of Lens Liévin.

The inclusion of the mining area of Nord in the world heritage of humanity (June 2012) associated with the opening of the Louvre in Lens (4 December 2012) refers to the dialectic heritage/modernity. It is located in the heart of the territorial development/redevelopment process, explicit the link between memory and project and confirms the instrumentalisation of culture in territorial development.

To what extent this dual strategy articulated between conservation and heritage and/or creation process and process of innovation contribute to create new territorial dynamics and a heritage and culture tourist factory?

The reality of these lands is to build, she enrolled in a current and especially future maturation. It questions especially the evolutionary selection of the Unesco "Cultural landscape" category, which refers to the role that landscape heritage can exert on companies.

Indeed, the heritagization process interacts with the territorialisation process, especially since the heritagization changed scale, to deploy on 3943 hectares (to which should be added 18 804 hectares of buffer zone). This situation illustrates the transition towards a new approach that represents a real challenge: show that this password is "alive", it is adaptable, it is recyclable.

This made questioning echo to the actuality of the seminar entitled "The cultural landscapes alive to the challenge of tourism", jointly organized by the Unesco Chair and network Unitwin-Unesco "Culture, tourism and development", the University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne / Irest-Eirst, the Centre of the world heritage, the Association of French heritage and Icomos France property, which took place at Unesco in Paris on December 15, 2015. It follows also at the meeting organized by the EIRST 07 April 2014, which focused on the theme of the heritagization of industry, entitled: "Hyper-industrielle economy, metropolization and industrial heritage", whose purpose was to examine what the heritagization of industry trends and new scales provided information of a new heritage scheme in interaction with the new stage of globalization and its urban translation. It finally crosses the issue of the recent publication of the book "New museums, new urban eras, new tourist practices", co-directed by Edith Fagnoni and Maria Gravari-Barbas, at the Presses universitaires de Laval.

The year 2012 is considered a double «coup de spectacularise projector» feeding the problem of space event and asking the question of durability. The Communauté d ' agglomération of Lens-Liévin having obtained in 2008 the label land of art and history, how articulate the world heritage and the national heritage? How continue to capitalize respectively on the event of the inclusion of the mining basin on the list of world heritage of UNESCO, which involves primarily the paradoxical setting ordinary places, and tourism on the lens event, which demonstrates the new development paradigm Museum support the urban metropolise reinvented since the end of the 20th century, applied to a metropolitan margin? How to operate a "lasting revolution" (MIT, 2011)?

The objective is to follow and to understand this construction/reconstruction, this post-industrial territories tourism development, in a context of dissemination of the paradigm of "creativity". Located in the heart of the labeled mining basin of Unesco World Heritage, the city of Lens means as a point of support in a territorial construction/reconstruction in the making, in which tourism, worn by a fit of scales – city, mining basin, region (Banda, Krauss, 2014)-will have to play its role as an opening. The set of scales is marked both by a change in hierarchy (global crossing), by a glocalization (getting in direct contact between local and global) and the Sockets. This sets language demonstrates the new territorial combination in construction.

Two new tools, appropriate to dissect, illustrate this situation in Calais. Firstly, the creation of Euralens in 2009 (structure of territorial development, which covers an urban ensemble more than 576 000 inhabitants,, an association bringing together the political, economic and social actors which the Louvre-Lens is the epicenter, which means as a tool at the service of communities. The "label Euralens" aims to emerge from development projects, to network and to develop, so as to increase the attractiveness of the territory. It is also a catalyst of metropolisation.

And on the other hand, the recent (June 25, 2015) signed a contract of destination, tool to support exception destinations organized around the territory flagship brands. For the Nord it is the trademark "Louvre". The construction of the destination ALL 'round the Louvre Lens"means as a new dynamic, it confirms a strong will capitalize around the mining area and the Louvre-Lens and federate the actors.

For the time being, the primary objective of the contract's destination is sit and disseminate ALL brand internationally by facilitating its ownership by all the actors of the territory. The increase in foreign destination ALL attendance will be the second objective of the contract. It involves the strengthening of the promotion on four market priority (Benelux, Britain, Germany and Japan). The third announced objective of the contract is to structure and organize this destination to make it competitive. The goal is to sell and develop short stays, sources of economic benefits.

Destination contract means as a renewed tool of tourism development and cooperation. It aims to highlight the tourist sector across a territory – which can be very localized, or rather group several regions – by combining in the same approach the State, asset France – providing pilotage-, communities or their satellites and private actors (Fagnoni, 2015). This new synergy means 'as a practical response to the need to act together to achieve the same objective of development, around a shared and coordinated strategy, mark international notoriety and a plan of action shared bringing together stakeholders of a destination"(

Develop, implement cultural and tourist project

Tourism development is to build and the results in terms of development are to analyze, measure and evaluate. Still incomplete and perhaps questionable, they allow nevertheless to consider the functioning of tourism and its need to structure the spaces and actors, key elements to include a success in the long term and potential territorial development accelerators.

The question of evaluation of Museum equipment in its territory of insertion heritage remains central. It marks the territory, to the territory then stand. The current challenge is to strengthen the links between the Museum and the jurisdiction (s), in order to avoid the deterritorialization often associated with global museums.

Around the Louvre-Lens shall be construed as a visible sign of a co-construction and co-production between culture, Museum, heritage, tourism and territorial development. The question of the re 'life' territorial renewal is asked. It supports the construction of the concept of 'destination '. On the other hand, the question arises also the articulation to build with the (tourist) metropolisation Lille (Damien, 2004).

Ordinary tensions between a logic of insertion into the dominant logics of "creative" globalization and a logic of promotion of a heritage and territory will be also analysed.

This approach will be developed throughout the day, organised between communications in the auditorium of the Louvre-Lens, discovery of the Museum and its site, and awareness to the territory of the mining basin with the discovery of the emblematic site 11/19 (dumps, production facilities and Labour cites).

Furthermore, this day on the cultural of the Nord turn to address and follow the after registration of the mining basin Nord on the list of world heritage of mankind as landscape cultural evolutionary coupled with the inauguration of a Louvre in Lens, will be followed by – in October 2016 – a day dedicated to the industrial outskirts, referent of the ordinary or vernacular heritage heritage.

Louvre Lens ALL

The program

The course of this day is hinged between communications
(Auditorium du Louvre in Lens) and field visit (11/19 site: heaps, production facilities and Labour cites, and the Louvre)

9 h 30: home to the Louvre Lens

9 h 45: Edith FAGNONI
Professor of geography, University of Paris-Sorbonne, Member of the laboratory ENeC, (spaces, Nature and Culture, UMR 8185) – Université Paris-Sorbonne Paris IV and member of the EA 7337 EIRST (team interdisciplinary research on the tourism) – University of Paris1-Panthéon-Sorbonne, President of the Association of Geographers French (AGF).
Presentation. Problem

10: 00: Luc PIRALLA
Conservateur du patrimoine, head of the conservation of the Louvre-Lens
A wolf in Lens: an unlikely project?

10 h 30: Jean-Michel TOBELEM
Doctor in management sciences HDR, associate professor at the IREST – University Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne, Option Culture
Can the Louvre-Lens respond to the expectations and the needs of the territory?

11 h: Catherine BELTRAM
Director of the Mission Bassin Nord
The basin mining Nord: the inscription of world heritage to the new territorial dynamics in construction

11 h 30: Norbert CROZIER
Head of Mission Louvre – Lens tourism project
"Around the Louvre Lens' (ALL), an emerging international destination

noon: Bernard MASSET
General delegate of Euralens
Culture, an assertive territorial identity catalyst

12 h 30 – 13 h 15: lunch

13 h 15 – 15 h 45: guided visit: Du Louvre-Lens in the Base 11/19
Trekking proposed by the country of art and history of the Communauté d ' agglomération of Lens-Liévin.
At the foot of the highest waste dumps in Europe between mining towns and old coal mining sites, the guide reveals the history and the mutation of a singular territory.
The visit will allow to understand the richness of the basin mining Nord – Pas – de Calais inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage list and its conversion through projects issues which, to the image of the Louvre-Lens and the Base 11/19, have the ambition to draw the territory of tomorrow.

15 h 45 – 16 h 30: free visit of the Louvre Museum

4.30 p.m.: Marina GASNIER
Lecturer HDR – history of industrial techniques/heritage, University of technology of Belfort-Montbéliard, laboratory IRTES-stories (EA 7274)
Heritagization of industrial spaces with economic development: the way of heritage in movement

5 pm: Anne-Cécile MERMET, Mathilde PARQUET and Emmanuelle SANTOIRE
Mathilde PARQUET is a student at ENS de Lyon, Master2 Interface Nature company
Emmanuelle SANTOIRE is student at the ENS de Lyon, Master1 MEEF aggregation
Brownfields in Lorraine, actors and logics of requalification. Between rejection, indifference and appropriation

17 h 30: Sylvain PETIT
Lecturer in economics, University of Valenciennes, laboratory (Institute for the development and the Prospective (PRI) (EA 1384)
Industrial heritage and pricing in hospitality: a hedonic analysis applied to the Nord Pas-de-Calais

6 pm: Jean SCOL and Adeline SKRZYPCZYK
Jean SCOL is lecturer in geography, University of Lille 1 science and Technologies, UFR of geography and planning, laboratory territories, cities, environment and society (OYEWOLE, EA 4477)
Adeline SKRZYPCZYK is PhD candidate in geography in contract CIFRE (town of Loos-en-Gohelle), laboratory territories, cities, environment and society (OYEWOLE, EA 4477), University Lille1-science and technology
Tourism and recreation in the service of the mutation of the post-miniers territories: the example of the common of Loos-en-Gohelle

6.30 p.m.: Maria GRAVARI-BARBAS
Architect, Professor of geography, Université Paris 1 – Panthéon-Sorbonne, Director of the IREST and EIRST, Unesco Chair
Synthesis, bilan, perspectives

Ending 7: 00 pm


Within the limit of available places, registration for this seminar "cultural mining basin of the Nord turn: prospects and limits of a transition to a cultural and tourist economy" is free but mandatory.

To register, please send an email to the organizers, together with:;

Informative journey from Paris:
TGV: Leaving Paris gare Nord 07 h 43 – arrival Lens 09 h 02 (09 h 30 shuttle Louvre-Lens). Return departure Lens 7.45 p.m. – arrival Arras 19 h 56 – departure Arras 20 pm – arrival Paris 9: 08 pm



Leave a Reply