Dr Tomoko Mori
IAS Fellow at St Mary’s College, Durham University (March - April 2015)
Tomoko Mori is a Japanese registered architect and conservation planner with a Ph.D. in the field of urban engineering from the University of Tokyo. She is currently working as a Project Researcher at the University of Tokyo, where she takes part in the UNESCO Kathmandu project in Lumbini, “the birth place of Load Buddha” on the world cultural heritage list, led by Prof. Yukio Nishimura. Her doctoral thesis was a study on the conservation method of villages through a case study in Gokayama, a part of “Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama”, a world cultural heritage site in Japan. She clarified the spatial peculiarities and dynamic mechanisms in the villages, and proposed not only the conservation method of villages but also the conceptual planning method for regional planning.
Dr Mori returned to academia in 2010, where she has started to explore cultural heritage conservation in Gokayama, world heritage villages, in Otsuchi-cho, a devastated town after the Great East Japan Earthquake in November 2011, and, most recently, in Lumbini, Nepal, a world heritage site, as one of the members of the UNESCO project, “Strengthening the Conservation and Management of Lumbini (PhaseⅡ, from July, 2014 for three years)”, for integrated conservation planning on regional scale including “Tilaurakot” and “Ramgram” on the world heritage tentative lists. She has also explored how to conserve cultural heritages as living heritages and how conservation meets urban or regional planning in practical terms. This has included: project management for development projects at the private real estate firms in Tokyo; project management for residential, office and logistics developments; and asset management.
While at the IAS at Durham, she plans to research “Durham Castle and Durham's World Heritage Site”, how it is managed as a 'living heritage' and how city planning protects both it and its adjacent area, aimed at further developing her knowledge towards the study of diverse cultural heritage conservation.