Jänner 2003


Zum Spezialforschungsbereich

A) The scientific quality of the proposed program of research
B) Structural Aspects
C) Location



GAHIS Project Proposal

The problem

Zum Spezialforschungsbereich

Was es zu beachten gibt

(Auszug aus den FWF Richtlinien)

A) The scientific 1 quality of the proposed program of research

§ What is the relevance of the proposed program of research as whole to the current level of international research in the field?

What significant additions to scientific knowledge may be expected from the research to be carried out within the framework of an SFB?

Does the proposed SFB research program make sufficient allowance for foreseeable developments in its field of inquiry over the next ten years?

§ Ranked according to scientific criteria, would the proposed SFB be among the top 10 % of all ongoing or planned international research projects in this area known to you?

§ Which research institutions are currently engaged in the most intensive research in the area of the proposed SFB? Where are the research groups located that are in the most direct competition with the proposed SFB?

§ What would you estimate are the chances of the present research proposal in comparison to these competitors?

How would you compare the scientific quality and potential of the proposed SFB research team to its international competitors?

§ How would it be possible to improve the projects for success of the proposed SFB?

Would it be possible to avoid areas overlapping with existing or planned research institutions or larger research projects?

§ Judged by the objectives of the entire SFB program in Austria as you understand them, would the proposed research be suited to the SFB format? Does the scientific quality of the proposed research justify funding as a Special Research Program?

B) Structural Aspects

§ Has the proposed research program been conceived in such a way that accords sufficient weight to multidisciplinary approaches, synergetic effects and the question involved training future scientists?

What other sorts of FWF funding (see information enclosed), or funds from other sources might be sought in addition to those of the SFB proper?

§ How would you evaluate the internal structural coherence of the proposed SFB? Does the proposed research represent a compact unit built upon a solid common foundation?

Have the inter-connections, cooperation, and the interface between various parts of the research project been adequately defined?

How would you evaluate the coherence of the proposed research team? How would you evaluate the existing forms of cooperation? To what extent has preliminary collective work been carried out and would this in your view be sufficient preparation to enable those involved to undertake a cooperative research effort on the scale of an SFB?

§ Does the structure of the proposed SFB correspond to the organizational demands necessary to achieve its stated objectives? Which of the proposed internal SFB decision-making bodies might be eliminated, which additional such bodies not foreseen in the proposal might be created?

§ Have both the overall composition of the SFB-team (in terms of the specific qualifications of the respective individual team members, etc.) and the structure of the proposed team as a whole (in terms of the ratio between scientific and non-scientific personnel, etc.) been designed optimally to achieve the immediate objectives of the proposed research?

If not, which changes in the proposed team itself and/or the assignment (s) of its individual members should in your view be undertaken immediately? Which changes would be desirable to insure that the long-term goals of the SFB are achieved?

C) Location

§ How would you evaluate the suitability of the proposed location for the planned SFB?

Specifically, is the existing local technical and scientific infrastructure (the extent and quality of the scientific equipment, personnel, office and lab space, equipment and furnishings, libraries, etc.) capable of supporting the proposed SFB-based research adequately?

§ Which changes and/or improvements should be considered? Which of these changes and/or improvements should be undertaken immediately, which will be necessary -insofar as it is possible to judge - only in the middle-term, over the course of the proposed SFB´s existence?

§ Would you favour initiating cooperation with research institutions beyond those foreseen in the SFB research proposal? If so, which one(s)?

§ Is there a justifiable and reasonable relationship between the additional equipment, etc., requested for the proposed SFB and that already existing in the designated hosting institution(s)?

§ How would you evaluate the potential extent and quality of integration of the planned SFB into structures of the designated hosting institution(s)? To what extent does the research planned by the SFB correspond to concentrations of scientific research in the participating institution(s)


§ Is the given Sub-Project based on a clearly formulated and scientifically unexceptionable hypothesis? How would you evaluate the proposed research on its own scientific merits and its potential to lead to further scientific inquiry (its relationship to the overall conception of the SFB´s? research aims)?

§ Is the proposed Sub-Project innovative and in keeping with the latest developments in the field?

§ How ould you evaluate the previous scientific achievement of the individuals involved in the Sub-Project (both principal investigator(s) of projects and prospective associate(s))?

§ How would you evaluate the scientific competence of this (these) individual(s) to undertake this Sub-Project?

§ How would you evaluate the chosen methodology?

§ How would you evaluate the proposed plan of research?

§ What is the relationship of this Sub-Project to the overall conception of the SFB research objectives? How important is it for the achievment of these objectives? Does the Sub-Project occupy a central and important position in the SFB as a whole, or is it of more marginal significance?

§ How would you evaluate the planned forms of cooperation between the various Sub-Projects of the proposed SFB and the given one? Which Sub-Projects already cooperate closely with one anothe? Which cooperative relations ought in your view be extende or intesified? Are the forms of cooperation defined specifically enough? If not, which ought to be specified more concretely?


RecorDIM ist eine für 5 Jahre (2004-2007) vereinbarte Kooperation internationaler Organisationen aus dem Bereich der Denkmalpflege, deren Ziel es ist, die Zusammenarbeit von Datennutzern (Bauforscher, Denkmalpfleger unterschiedlicher Fachrichtungen, Projektmanager, Planern, etc.) und Datenerfassern (Fotografen, Photogrammetern und Geodäten) zu verbessern.


Between 1995 and 1999, a series of outreach workshops held by the International Committee for Documentation of Cultural Heritage (CIPA) has identified critical gaps in the fields of heritage Recording, Documentation and Information Management between those who provide information for conservation and those who use it.

In response, the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), the Getty Conservation Institute (GCI) and CIPA together created the RecorDIM (for Heritage Recording, Documentation and Information Management) Initiative partnership. The purpose of the initiative is to bring information users and providers together to identify the nature of the gaps between them, to develop strategies to close the gaps and to recommend a framework for action to be coordinated by the RecorDIM Initiative over the coming five years.


ICOMOS (International Council on Monuments and Sites)

ICOMOS is an international non-governmental organization of professionals, dedicated to the conservation of the world's historic monuments and sites. ICOMOS provides a forum for professional dialogue and a vehicle for the collection, evaluation, and dissemination of information on conservation principles, techniques, and policies.

CIPA - Heritage Documentation of Cultural Heritage; The International Committee for Documentation of Cultural Heritage is one of the international committees of ICOMOS and it was established in collaboration with ISPRS (International Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing).

Its main purpose is the improvement of all methods for surveying of cultural monuments and sites, specially by synergy effects gained by the combination of methods under special consideration of photogrammetry with all its aspects, as an important contribution to recording and perceptual monitoring of cultural heritage, to preservation and restoration of any valuable architectural or other cultural monument, object or site, as a support to architectural, archaeological and other art-historical research.

ISPRS and ICOMOS created CIPA because they both believe that a monument can be restored and protected only when it has been fully measured and documented and when its development has been documented again and again, i.e. monitored, also with respect to its environment, and stored in proper heritage information and management systems.

GCI (The Getty Conservation Institute)

The Getty Conservation Institute is a program of the J. Paul Getty Trust located in Los Angeles, California, USA. The Institute works internationally to advance the field of conservation through scientific research, field projects, education and training, and the dissemination of information in various media.

The mission of the Institute is to enhance and encourage the preservation and understanding of the visual arts in all of their dimensions (objects, collections, architecture, and sites) by addressing unanswered questions, demonstrating best conservation practice, and contributing to the development of sustainable conservation solutions.

GAHIS Project Proposal

Creation of a comprehensive inventory of the cultural heritage of the region Garhwal Himal

Survey of the actual condition before the beginning of accelerated development

Interdisciplinary cooperation between experts in the disciplines

All partners involved work on the development of a system which iscost efficientsimple to operateenables open access

Raise awareness of the local public to their own cultural heritage and its conservation.

The problem

Cultural and natural heritage values are endangered by numerous factors. Besides self-evident and direct perceptible impacts like destruction of objects in armed conflicts or by natural disasters, there are numerous influences which cause the continuous deterioration. Climatic influences and environmental pollution affect and modify remains of the past in a slow and barely noticeable way. Finally is the cultural and natural heritage often disregarded in the planning of ongoing developments.

To preserve the visible remains and evidences of the history efficient fundamentals have to be prepared. The base for any preservation or conservation work on objects is a comprehensive recording and furthermore an inventory where the information materials of the records are administered. To build up such inventories means the need for high funds. The reason for that is the time consuming recording work necessarily done by experts which often use expensive equipment. Most of the world’s cultural heritage is therefore not documented in a way that makes it possible to restore or reconstruct an object - real or virtual - in the case of damage or destruction. Especially developing countries face the problem of an increasing loss of cultural heritage treasures as there the evident battle with keeping up the infrastructure outweigh the concern of historic objects. This are the reasons for projects like “GAHIN - Garhwal Himalayan Inventory” that will have do concentrate on developing tools and instruments for simple, fast and economic ways to record objects and to enable more people and even laypersons to take part in this work.

Following problems will have to be discussed.

Enable interested laypersons to prepare useful recordings of objects.

A possible way to record an object to prepare plans for renovation works is the photogrammetric documentation. This technique conventionally uses photographs taken with metric cameras for the restitution of the geometry of an object. Results of an photogrammetric processing may be plans, maps, wire frame or virtual models of the object. Researches in this field have proven the use of non-metric cameras for the recording of objects. By following simple rules a non-photogrammetrist can provide a photographic recording of an object which can be used by experts of photogrammetry for restitution. Based on the existing “3x3 minimum rules for the architectural photogrammetry” the manual has to be adapted to regional needs and widen to describe an object textual. It will guide an interested person to prepare an useful recording of an object in consideration of the local historic and social background.

Development of a database for the management of information material about objects

To collect, develop and access the material properly a database has to be developed to enable access through internet. To enter and access existing data can be done from any place.

There are databases which are aiming for the recording of cultural heritage. Although the possibility to enter data through the internet is very rare. In most cases a well defined user group only is allowed to enter, change and access data. The administration of a database accessible for everyone has been developed in the project APIS and has only to be adopted for the use in a region of India. It is necessary to consider local restrains as well as the necessary data structures to describe objects in the region. Research will be considered in future development in the area of description of architectural objects.

Furthermore the integration of data about archaeological sites have to considered when designing the database. To enlarge the database with archaeological context is a step to complete the inventory about the cultural heritage of the region. For this purpose existing archaeological databases will be analysed and considered in the development of the projects tools. Studies of the HNB University of Garhwal will build the base for the adjust the system to the actual facts of the region.

Development of an Geographic Information system

Changes of socio-economic and political conditions transform the patterns of urban and rural landcover to a great extent. Historical maps at local and regional scales are - besides topographic descriptions and work of fine art the earliest spatio-temporal documents of landcover and landuse change. These documents preserve historical descriptions of rural as well as of urban landscapes both geometrically and thematically. Comparative methods of GIS-based cartographic analysis are effective tools for building topochronological data bases of the state and the dynamics of change of cultural/natural heritage sites. Time series of historical maps traditionally have been analysed by visual comparison, generalisation and analogue mapping of specific features. Overlays of extracted information can be merged to thematic maps of urban/rural landcover and landuse change. Nowadays GIS provides the tools for scanning, georeferencing and analysing time series of topochronological data. Interactive methods of collecting, controlling, selecting and connecting multi-temporal cartographic information support the analogue/digital processes of analysing and visualising local to regional urban and rural landcover change of cultural and natural heritage sites.

The development of GIS for the region of Garhwal Himal and the spatial referencing of the data about objects of the cultural heritage of the region will provide an efficient instrument for the planning and the monitoring of the region for upcoming changes following the opening of the region for tourism.


· Design and development of a database and a GIS for the recording of the cultural heritage in the region of Garhwal Himal

· Evaluation of existing collections and documentations

· Survey of objects in the region

· Integration of existing data as well as collected data in the database and referencing in a GIS

· Development of an understandable desktop to simple administration and access to the data

· Training of people in the region

· Implementation of the system at the HNB Garhwal University



· 01 07 2004 Start of project

· Summer 2004 Preliminary studies

· triage and analysation of available material and data of the region

· Fall 2004 First visit to the region of Garhwal Himal

· Survey of available collections of recording material about objects of the cultural heritage of the region

· Advancement of exiting manuals for the preparation of useful monument recordings by amateurs in cooperation with local University Institutes and authorities

· Search for interested people and institutions for cooperation to train people in recording of buildings

· Winter/Spring 2004/2005 Triage and processing of the collected material

· Development of pilot systems for the database and the Geographic Information system

· Summer 2005 Excursion to Garhwal Himal

· Recording of objects in collaboration with students

· training of locals

· integrate existing material into the pilot system of the database and the GIS

· Fall 2005 - Winter 2005 Processing of material and development of systems

· processing of the collected material

· submitting the information into the database and the GIS

· search and development for the use of photographic documentations for photogrammetric restitution

· using photographic recordings for photogrammetric restitution

· tuning of the pilot systems of the database and the GIS

· development of an user interface for the access to the system

· Spring 2006 Visit to Garhwal Himal

· installation of the system at the HNB University of Garhwal

· testing of the system in cooperation with local interested authorities and private persons

· refinement of the systems and official presentation

· Summer 2006 Final work

· revise the material

· integrate the results of India into the project

· prepare final publications of project results

Co-operation Partners

Institute for Comparative Research in Architecture

Projectposition and Partners within the Institute have to be defined.

University of Technology, Dresden, Germany

Prof. Csaplovics is working with his team on Geographic Information Systems for regions from National parks in Europe to regions in Western Africa. The research work of his institute is focussed on using GIS for the monitoring and modelling of cultural and natural landscapes of endangered areas.

The aim of the co-operation within the project “GAHIN- Garhwal Himalayan Inventory” is the development of a Georgraphic Information System for the spatial referencing of the elements of the inventory. It will be the instrument for the presentation and the access to the database which administers the assembeled datamaterial.

By using different topographic and spatial information available of the region the GIS will provide the fundamentals for the survey and analysation of the structure of the cultural and natural landscape of the region. Further it enables the modelling of conceivable influences and provides a helpful tool for the planning of essential infrastructural interventions. The creation of test models with the compiled material and parameters is also a target of this part of the research group.

Department of Ancient Indian History, Culture and Archaeology

HNB Garhwal University

Prof. Dr. Nautiyal is head of the department of Ancient Indian History culture and Archaeology at the HNB Garhwal University, Srinagar Uttaranchal, India. The scientists at this institute are specialized in different branches of Himalayan Archaeology, Environmental Archaeology, Ethno archaeology, Living and folk traditions and related fields.

The institute is situated in Srinagar, Uttaranchal within the area of investigation for the project GAHIN - Garhwal Himalayan Inventory.

The first aim for the co-operation is to acquaint the research team with facts and figures about the region of Garhwal Himal and to make contact with local authorities.

Second, and major aim within the project is the co-operation in the design of the database and the Geographic Information system. The records of the database have to be defined in a way that take the cultural, ethnological, historical and archaeological background of the region into consideration.

And finally the department can provide a collection of information about archaeological sites in the region of Garhwal Himal which will be integrated into the inventory.

Informationsblatt des Institutes für vergleichende Architekturforschung
Newsletter of the Institute for Comparative Research in Architecture

Institut für vergleichende Architekturforschung c/o Technische Universität Wien Karlsplatz 13 / 251 z A-1040 Wien Austria
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