Preserving the remains of the past for the benefit of future generations is a common approach in international heritage policy. Current management practice advocates preserving underwater cultural heritage (UCH) where it lies on the seabed, in situ. However, this practice is questioned due to a lack of understanding of the entangled threats posed by multiple natural and anthropogenic drivers.
In a rapidly changing ocean, and with increasing human exploitation of the marine environment, it is necessary to develop new concepts for assessing and preserving this resource. With over 3,000,000 shipwrecks and thousands of submerged prehistoric sites lying on the floors of the world’s oceans, ENDURE aims to disentangle both natural and anthropogenic decay processes, determine their cumulative and interactive effects on UCH and propose a novel conceptual framework to preserve this heritage based on site entropy.
This will be achieved using the following four approaches: