Bridging the Past and Future: The Transformative Journey of INT-ACT

Ms Elpida Tzika

Project Manager

In an era where rapid technological advancements and cultural shifts intertwine, the essence of our cultural heritage—especially the intangible aspects that define our identity and community bonds—faces the risk of fading into obscurity. This is where the groundbreaking INT-ACT project steps in, funded by Horizon Europe, aiming to redefine how we interact with, preserve, and pass on our intangible cultural legacy.

Imagine living in a world where the stories, traditions, and artistic expressions that shaped our identity are on the brink of vanishing. This isn’t just about losing relics of the past; it’s about maintaining our cultural continuity, understanding our roots, and forging connections that transcend time. Intangible cultural heritage, encompassing everything from folklore and music to rituals and language, provides a profound sense of belonging and insight into humanity’s diverse tapestry. In the face of globalization and societal transformation, safeguarding these cultural treasures becomes imperative, not just for historical preservation, but for fostering social cohesion and resilience in our ever-evolving world.

INT-ACT innovatively tackles this challenge by harnessing immersive Extended Reality (XR) technology to create a bridge between our past, present, and future. By developing advanced methodologies to capture, structure, and present the Emotional, Experiential, and Environmental (3E) dimensions of intangible cultural heritage, INT-ACT crafts engaging, multisensory experiences that breathe new life into these cultural assets.

At the heart of INT-ACT’s mission are four XR-based demonstrators, each focusing on a specific societal challenge—ranging from cultural tourism to the impacts of aging societies and the dynamics of immigration. For instance, in the picturesque town of Kavala, Greece, ITML is leading the development of an immersive XR environment that not only showcases the region’s rich cultural heritage, but also actively engages the community and visitors, fostering a deeper appreciation and understanding.

Apart from the technological innovations, INT-ACT is deeply committed to stakeholders engagement. ITML’s mission within the project is to establish best practices for collaboration with a wide array of stakeholders, including local communities, artists, and policymakers. This ensures that the project’s outcomes resonate widely and have a lasting, meaningful impact.

Furthermore, with a strong focus on dissemination and communication, ITML plays a key role in sharing INT-ACT’s achievements and insights. By sharing our journey and findings, we aim to inspire a broader dialogue about the significance of intangible cultural heritage and its potential to enlighten and unite us across temporal and spatial divides.

As we navigate this exciting venture, we invite you to engage with INT-ACT, delve into our discoveries, and partake in our shared cultural narrative. Through this project, we’re not just preserving the past; we’re setting the stage for a future where cultural heritage remains a vibrant, integral part of our lives and societies. Stay tuned to ITML’s website and our communication channels for updates and insights. Follow us as we delve into the rich facets of our cultural heritage with INT-ACT, integrating technology and tradition to bring new perspectives to our collective narratives and cultural expressions for future generations to appreciate.

This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 Research and Innovation program under grant agreement No 101132719.