Accepting PhD Students

Personal profile

Biography

Kostas is Senior Lecturer in Museology at the University of Manchester. From September 2022 to July 2023, he was seconded at the Manchester Art Gallery as a Research Curator.

Kostas has a MA and PhD in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester and a first degree in History and Archaeology from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece.

Research interests

Kostas's research interests cross the fields of museology, archaeology, cultural heritage, and digital media. His expertise lies in the areas of Trauma Museology and Digital Heritage. The former examines how museums collect, document and manage the material culture of trauma over time by articulating the new field of Trauma Museology. In the latter he researches the theory and practice of digital technology in museums, galleries and heritage sites. He’s particularly interested in the museology of technology, that is the critical analysis of the use of digital, social and mobile media in museums for purposes of curation, interpretation, evaluation and audience engagement.

His current research activity includes: 

  • Museums and Spontaneous Memorials. A Museology of Trauma. The project provides the first comprehensive, international study of the conceptual, practical, and ethical issues that the collection, documentation and curation of spontaneous memorials after traumatic events present to museums and other cultural and heritage organisations. It draws on "ethics of care" and "trauma-informed practice" to offer new theoretical and methodological tools for engaging with Trauma Museology. It will, also, develop a knowledge base, policy and practice resources and a global support network for cultural professionals and organisations responding urgently to large-scale traumatic events.
  • Manchester Together Archive: ethics of care and spontaneous memorials in the aftermath of the 2017 Manchester Attack. Since 2017 Kostas has been working with the Manchester Art Gallery and Archives+ in archiving and researching the material recovered from the spontaneous memorials after the Manchester Arena bombing on 22nd May 2017. This work explores the usefulness of an ethics of care approach in addressing ethical responsibilities in the contingent, adaptive and improvisational practice of collecting spontaneous memorials.
  • The XR Museum. Merging physical and virtual interfaces to create eXtended Reality (XR) experiences for cultural audiences This feasibility project will analyse the viability of the use of collection and visitor data and AI-generated 3D scans of museums and galleries to offer museum staff and audiences opportunities to interact with eXtended Reality (XR) museum spaces, multi-layered content, and avatars of visitors.

Key Research Projects

Research Grants

  • 2024 (PI) 'Museums and Spontaneous Memorials. A Museology of Trauma'. AHRC (Research, Development and Engagement Fellowship) (£238,605).
  • 2022 (PI) ‘Therapeutic Impact of Physical, Digital and Virtual Collections of Trauma. A Secondment at the Manchester Art Gallery’. University of Manchester: AHRC, EPSRC, MRC, Impact Acceleration Account (£67,454).
  • 2022 (PI) ‘Museum without walls: Using AI, 3D and VR technologies to co-produce immersive experiences for remote museum visitors’, University of Manchester Research Institute (£19,919.65).
  • 2021 (PI) Knowledge Transfer Partnership with Port Sunlight Village Trust. Innovate UK (£141,542).
  • 2021 (PI) ‘The XR Museum. Merging physical and virtual interfaces to create XR experiences for cultural audiences’. Turing-Manchester Feasibility Project; (£15,923)
  • 2018 (PI) Creating, Documenting and Using Archives of Spontaneous Memorials: Building an International Network’. British Academy Small Grant (£9,945).
  • 2018 (Partner) Developing, digitising and interpreting the Archive of the Manchester Arena Spontaneous memorials’. Heritage Lottery Fund (£99,700).
  • 2017 (PI) ‘Documenting St Ann’s Square’s Spontaneous Memorial of the Manchester Arena Attack’. Faculty of Humanities – Humanities Strategic Investment Fund (£10,348).
  • 2016 (PI) 'Public Engagement and Cultural Professionals’ Mentoring in Course Assessment and Feedback’, CHERIL (£16,954).
  • 2015 (PI). ‘Developing the Museum of Medicine and Health into a Platform for Public Engagement’, Wellcome Trust Institutional Strategic Support Fund (£4,955).
  • 2014 (CoI). ‘Culture Counts - metrics for the arts: a new approach'. Digital R&D Fund for the Arts: Big Data (£300,000).
  • 2014 (PI). Digital Cultural Engagement of Older Audiences’, MICRA and Manchester City Council (£8,821.28).
  • 2012 (PI). ‘‘Afterlife’ of Heritage Research: Developing research students’ and Early Careers Researchers’ skills for the transition from academia to public, profession and business’, AHRC (£59,811).
  • 2008 (CoI). Digital Heritage Research Training Initiative’. AHRC (£52,512).

Conference Organisation

Latest Conference Panels

Latest Talks

  • "Ethics of Care in Collecting Spontaneous Memorials". Remembering/Imaging Terror Conference, University of Birmingham, 14-16 September 2022
  • "The role of spontaneous memorials' collections in the memorialisation of terror attacks". Memorial needs and the victims of terrorism Conference, 17 May 2021
  • "Can digital archives be emotive? Developing a digital platform for the Manchester Together Archive" (with Jenny Marsden), DCDC, 13th November 2019, Birmingham
  • "Collecting and interpreting public grief through material left at large-scale spontaneous  memorials", Urgent Collecting Roundtable, 29 October 2019, National September 11 Memorial Museum, New York
  • "The “Manchester Together” Archive: co-producing a heritage of memory". In Memory Studies Association Conference, Madrid, 25-28 June 2019
  • "Developing a digital archive of a spontaneous memorial: the case of the Manchester Together Archive". In Curating contemporary digital data in museums, University of Graz, 11th February 2019 
  • “Archiving the spontaneous memorials of the Manchester Arena bombing” (with Amanda Wallace), DCDC, 21st November 2018
  • “Documenting and Archiving Spontaneous Memorials: the case of the Manchester Arena bombing”, Association of Critical Heritage Studies (ACHS) Conference 2018, Hangzhou, 1-6thSeptember 2018
  • “Collecting the public response to the Manchester Arena bombing”, In The ethics of collecting trauma: what is the role of museums in recording and displaying contemporary events, International Workshop, Doha, 7-9 May 2018
  • “Museum Avatars”, The Inclusive Museum Conference, Manchester 15-17 September 2017
  • ‘Amphipolis 2.0 Authority, Archaeology and Social Media Activism’, Association of Critical Heritage Studies Conference, Montreal, 6-10 June 2016
  • 'Data culture and organisational practice: Using big data sets to assess the quality of cultural work and experiences', Museums and the Web 2016, Los Angeles, CA, USA, 6-9 April 2016

Esteem Indicators

  • Managing Editor, Museum and Society Journal
  • Society of American Archivists, Member of the Crisis, Disaster, and Tragedy Response Working Group
  • Founder of the International Network of Archives of Spontaneous Memorials
  • Editorial Review Board Member, SAGE Open
  • Peer Reviewer for journals such as Journal of Material Culture, Museum and Society, Culture Unbound, Museology, Journal of Conservation and Museum Studies, Participation, International Journal of Media and Cultural Politics
  • Visiting Lecturer at the Inter-University Postgraduate Programme in Museology at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece
  • Steering Group, Museum of Medicine and Health, University of Manchester
  • Founding Member of CHIMERA (Cultural Heritage, Identity and Memory Research Area) at the University of Manchester
  • Founder of the Association of Greek Museologists, Greece
  • International Network for Classical Archaeological University Collections

Opportunities

Current PhD Students

Completed MPhil/PhDs

PhD applications

Kostas would welcome PhD applications in the following broad areas:

  • Spontaneous memorials
  • Urgent collecting
  • Collecting the 'everyday'
  • Digital curating in museums, galleries and heritage environments
  • Social media and cultural participation
  • Understanding engagement and impact through/of digital media in the museum and heritage sector
  • Museum exhibitions in 'non places'
  • Archaeological sites as 'open-air museums'
  • Archaeological monuments in urban settings
  • Archaeological curatorship and museum archaeology
  • Interpretation and display of Greek archaeology
  • Museum professionalisation

PhD examinations

  • 2024. Joy Acheyini Edeoja. Assessing the role of education in heritage perception among young graduates of secondary school: A case study of Nigeria. UCL (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2023. Elizabeth Gow. Enriqueta Rylands: the public and private collecting of a Nonconformist bibliophile, 1889-1908 (PhD) (Internal Examiner
  • 2023. Ava Salzer. Presenting the Unknown: Indefinite Objects in Museum Settings and the Implications of Their Interpretation. University of Leicester (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2022. Lukas Hugnes-Noehrer. Artificial Intelligence, Museum Environments and Their Constituents: A Cross-disciplinary Study Using Recommender Systems to Explore Digital Collections (PhD) (Internal Examiner)
  • 2020. Chiara Bartolini. An Audience-Oriented Approach to Online Communication in English: The Case of European University Museums' Websites. University of Bologna (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2019. Shuchen Wang. Atoms and Bits of Cultural Heritage. The Public Use of Dunhuang Collections in Knowledge Making, Nation (Empire) Building, Museum Diplomacy, Cultural Tourism and Digital Economy. Aalto University (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2019. Lauren Vargas. Understanding digital maturity through data collection and use. University of Leicester (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2019. Alex McDonagh. Discovering Towneley Park: a digital and multimethod approach to understanding the effects of a digital heritage interpretation of a Lancashire park. University of Salford (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2016. Nathan Matthews. Spatio-Temporality and Digital Tourism in Industrial UNESCO World Heritage Sites. University of South Wales (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2015. Genevieve Alelis. Older and Younger Adults’ Interactions with Cultural Heritage Artefacts Outside a Museum. University of Kent (PhD) (External Examiner)
  • 2015. Amy Hetherington. Designing for the Post-Millennials: What Assumptions are made by Staff in Museums about Child Digital Literacy when Designing Digital Interactives? University of Leicester (External Examiner)
  • 2015. Bronwen Colquhoun. Photography, Knowledge and Communities: The Role of Flickr The Commons in Reimagining and Reappropriating Historic Photographic Collections. Newcastle University (External Examiner)
  • 2013. Cristiano Agostino. The Contemporary Digital Museum in Theory and Practice. University of Edinburgh (External Examiner)
  • 2013. Halona Norton-Westbrook. Between The 'Collection Museum' and The University: The Rise of the Connoisseur-Scholar and the Evolution of Art Museum Curatorial Practice, 1900-1940. University of Manchester (Internal Examiner)
  • 2009. Maria Sklirou. Beyond access initiatives of Greek museums. University of Manchester (MPhil) (Internal Examiner)

Teaching

Postgraduate Teaching

Kostas teaches in the MA Art Gallery and Museum Studies. In particular :

  • 'Introduction to Museum Studies' (1st semester core course; contributor)
  • 'Managing Collections and Exhibitions' (1st semester core course; course convenor and contributor)
  • 'Digital Heritage' (2nd semester option course; course convenor and contributor)

Teaching and Organisational Awards

  • 2022. Making a Difference Commended Award
  • 2022. Exceptional Performance Award
  • 2021. Winner of the Outstanding Academic Advisor Award in the Humanities Outstanding Staff Awards for Teaching, Learning and Student Experience 2020-21
  • 2021. Nomination for an Outstanding Teaching Award in the Faculty of Humanities Outstanding Staff Awards 2020-21
  • 2016. Teaching Excellence Award, University of Manchester

Social responsibility

Social Responsibility and Cultural Engagement Grants and Projects

  • 2023. Collecting and Curating Spontaneous Memorials. Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art / British Art Network Seminar Support. £975
  • 2021. Documenting the Cultural Heritage of Trauma, SALC SR and Cultural Engagement Funds 2021-22. £4,975
  • 2020. Use of 3D scan in teaching and learning, SALC Cultural Engagement Funds 2020-21. £4,000
  • 2019. Humanities Innovation in Teaching, 30 August 2019; £4,988
  • 2019. Faculty Engaging with our communities fund. £1,000
  • 2019. SALC Social Responsibility Funding. £2,000
  • 2019. Faculty SR in the Curriculum fund. £2,000
  • 2018. “Trees of Hope: Hybrid ecologies of remembering the Manchester Arena bombing”, SALC Environmental Sustainability; May. £1,050
  • 2018. ‘Medical Collection and Exhibibition’, Faculty SR in the curriculum application 2018-19. £2,000
  • 2017. ‘Developing Archiving and Cultural Practices of Spontaneous Memorials’, SALC Social Responsibility and Cultural Engagement funding schemes. £2,000
  • 2017. VR Game on Sustainability. Faculty SR in the Curriculum. £2,000
  • 2017. ‘Medical Collection Development’, Faculty SR in the curriculum application. £2,000
  • 2017. Faculty of Humanities, Engaging with our communities funding call 2017-18. £1,500
  • 2016. ‘Refugee Crisis’ student project, Faculty of Humanities, ‘Engaging with our communities’. £1,500
  • 2016. ‘Refugee Crisis’ student project (exhibition and event), SALC External Relations. £3,000
  • 2016. ‘Curating Medical Objects’, Faculty SR in the curriculum application 2016-17. £2,000
  • 2016. 'Co-producing a Virtual Reality Immersive Game with university students and museum audiences’, University of Manchester, Learning Enrichment Fund. £4,990
  • 2016. 'Art, Digital Culture and Pokemon: Engaging young audiences with animal survival and extinction’, University of Manchester, Environmental Sustainability. £2,000
  • 2016. Faculty SR Fund, towards the Professional Practice Project module’s exhibition and event in Chetham’s Library. £800
  • 2016. SALC Cultural Engagement Fund, towards the Professional Practice Project module’s exhibition and event in Chetham’s Library. £950
  • 2015. Developing the Museum of Medicine and Health into a Platform for Public Engagement. Wellcome Trust. £4,995
  • 2014. Social Responsibility in the Curriculum. Faculty of Humanities, University of Manchester. £2,000.

Social Responsibility Awards

  • 2021. Social Responsibility Commended Award
  • 2018. Making a Difference Commended Award
  • 2015. Making a Difference Certificate

Expertise related to UN Sustainable Development Goals

In 2015, UN member states agreed to 17 global Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure prosperity for all. This person’s work contributes towards the following SDG(s):

  • SDG 3 - Good Health and Well-being
  • SDG 9 - Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
  • SDG 11 - Sustainable Cities and Communities
  • SDG 16 - Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions

Education/Academic qualification

Doctor of Philosophy, Everyday media for everyday meanings: interpreting archaeological monuments in the streets of a Greek city, University of Leicester

Award Date: 14 Dec 2006

Master of Arts, University of Leicester

Award Date: 13 Dec 2000

Bachelor of Arts, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki

Award Date: 20 Mar 1996

Areas of expertise

  • AM Museums (General). Collectors and collecting (General)
  • Digital Heritage
  • Digital Humanities
  • Museums and digital media
  • museums and everyday life
  • data culture
  • spontaneous memorials
  • heritage activism
  • CC Archaeology
  • public archaeology
  • museum archaeology
  • archaeological curatorship

Research Beacons, Institutes and Platforms

  • Digital Futures
  • Sustainable Futures

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