Faculty of Education and Arts

CGS events

Public Lecture:
Deindustrialisation, Regional Identity and Industrial Heritage in the Ruhr, 1958-2018

Wednesday 8 March 2017
Please arrive at 6.30pm for 7pm start
Dr Christian Wicke, University of Utrecht

Presented in association with Latrobe City Council

Federation University Australia, Gippsland Campus
Northways Road, Churchill
Building 3E (Auditorium)


Please register here prior to the event


In 2018, the last of hundreds of coal mines will close in the Ruhr. Since the late 1950s, Germany's economic heartland has experienced a dramatic industrial decline. The regional identity of the Ruhr remains nevertheless strongly based on the industrial past. In the late 1960s an industrial-heritage movement emerged. This movement from below cared foremost about the industrial aesthetics, the working-class milieu and the preservation of the built environment.

With its increasing institutionalisation, however, industrial heritage became a movement from above, trying to foster, market and 'touristify' the industrial image of the Ruhr with significant financial support from the state government. Thanks to large-scale urban renewal programs and world-famous art festivals, industrial heritage consequently has become a dominant feature in the cultural landscape of the polycentric region.

PHOTO: 'A large crowd is pictured at the official opening of the railway to Walhalla on 3 May, 1910’ - Item held by the Centre for Gippsland Studies