Interpret Europe

„Interpret Europe – European Association for Heritage Interpretation“ is an international membership-based organization, registered as a charity in Germany since 2010. Members include associations, institutions, companies and individuals. About 90% of the members are from Europe. [1]


Heritage interpretation developed in US National Parks during the first half of the 20th century and was originally defined by Freeman Tilden in 1957. [2] The first national association in Europe was the Society for the Interpretation of Britain’s Heritage, founded in 1975. [3] ] Interpret Europe was first developed as an open network in 2000, while the association was formally established on 14 July 2010 in Slovenia. [4]


Interpret Europe operates on a two-tier system with an Executive Board of Directors and a Supervisory Committee. The Board of Directors manages the organization and includes at least two members, each authorized to act as legal representatives. The Board of Directors is appointed by a Supervisory Committee, consisting of three members. The Supervisory Committee is elected by the Board of Directors and the Supervisory Committee. [5]


Interpret Europe fosters research and practice on the field of heritage interpretation. [6]

Heritage interpretation is a non-formal learning approach encouraging people to search for meanings that natural or cultural heritage holds for them through first-hand experiences of heritage sites, objects or events. It is a worldwide approach mainly used in protected areas, at monuments, in museums or at zoological or botanical gardens.

Interpret Europe promotes itself as a European platform for cooperation and exchange for these institutions.


Interpret Europe holds conferences, participates in international projects and organizes training events.

Conferences typically feature up to 100 presentations, workshops and study visits, with the conference participants contributing to them. Interpret Europe conferences have been held in Germany (2011), Italy (2012), Sweden (2013), Croatia (2014) and Poland (2015). The 2016 Interpret Europe Conference, in Belgium, addressed the theme of „Heritage Interpretation – for the Future of Europe“ and is dedicated to the experience of visiting peace.

International projects focus was number of subject areas, Including the development of European quality criteria (LEADER „Transinterpret“ Project Leonardo „TOPAS“ Project), the development of training course offers (Leonardo „HeriQ“ Project), working with specific hearings ( Grundtvig „HISA“ Project) and dealing with competence-based learning approaches (Leonardo „IOEH“ Project, Grundtvig „InHerit“ Project).

Training events are offered in different languages ​​and currently focus on training guides and guide trainers at visitor-related facilities, such as parks or museums.


Interpret Europe is part of a global alliance, cooperating with the National Association for Interpretation (USA), Interpreting Canada, Interpreting Australia and other networks and initiatives. In Europe, there are currently joint projects with the Association for Heritage Interpretation (UK) and with Sdružení pro interpretaci místního dědictví (Czech Republic). Interpret Europe has also entered into an exchange with the Association for the Interpretation of Patrimonio (Spain) and with the Association of Interpretação do Património Natural e Cultural (Portugal). Interpret Europe supports the development of further national associations in Europe.


  1. Jump up^ Interpret Europe ArchivedNewsletter2016-03-09 at theWayback Machine.
  2. Jump up^ Freeman Tilden:Interpreting Our Heritage. 1. Auflage. University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill 1957
  3. Jump up^ Association for Heritage Interpretation – What is AHI?
  4. Jump up^ About Interpret Europe – Our History
  5. Jump up^ Interpret Europe Constitution
  6. Jump up^ Freiburg Declaration