Topotheque. Community-driven online archive anchored in regions.

Nov 24, 2021

Weinviertel Ost region, Austria.

Participatory governance of cultural heritage



Remember that box where your grandparents kept their old photographs? Those containers with the smell of nostalgia from our grandparents are definitely part of our own collective memory. However, usually that part of our heritage is kept in private hands, inaccessible to the broader public.

Topotheque, a platform making our family memories accessible online has come to nuance our historical heritage and give it a unique personal perspective. This crowd-sourced online archive, started by a group of volunteers in Weinviertel Ost Region (Austria), enables citizens to aggregate dispersed material in a unified platform while strengthening participatory governance.

The platform has had a strong impact in the local social fabric by:

  • Strengthening the sense of identity and belonging
  • Preservation and valorisation of personal cultural heritage
  • Improving knowledge sharing about local cultural heritage via more than 200 Topotheques across Europe

Thanks to Topotheque, our grandparents’ boxes full of memories will no longer accumulate dust but have the life they deserve.


Weinviertel Ost: community-driven online archive at regional level

by Cécile Houpert | Cultural Heritage in Action


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