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Durham University

Research & business

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Mrs Margie Stewart-Piercy

Contact Mrs Margie Stewart-Piercy


BA(Hons) Information and Library Management - Northumbria University 1995


An experienced professional within the cultural sector, Margie has held strategic posts for over 10 years. As Regional Manager at Museums, Libraries and Archive Council and as a Relationship Manager for Arts Council England she supported the cultural sector advising and ensuring that Government statutory requirement were met. Margie has held senior positions within local authorities where she has managed a museum service and is now currently working for Stockton Borough Council as their Cultural Partnership and Strategy Coordinator, a role that extends across the Tees Valley.

Margie also spent several years working within the pharmaceutical Industry for global companies where she developed skills in business, management, relationship management and sales.

Research Topic

A comparative study examining the impact and Legacy of Cultural Titles


The term Cultural title is used as a way to describe the accolades presented to competing cities, conurbations or cultural and heritage assets. These range from defining an asset such as a World Heritage Site to a wider award of European Capital of Culture. These titles have been touted as effective way of regenerating a city or area, and the benefits are extolled by politicians and leaders in those communities. It is important therefore in an age of austerity to better understand the virtues, costs and longevity that these titles may bring and the reach within the communities that they serve.

There are significant costs in financial and time commitment in working towards a bid, hosting events and ensuring a legacy. In the case of obtaining UNESCO World Heritage Status it will also be important to assess if there are also on going costs of maintaining and managing these sites. How can the benefits in terms of regeneration but also in terms of place shaping, tourism growth and in perception of place both internally and externally be measured? It is therefore important to understand the benefits of holding these titles versus the costs, and the breadth of the impacts.

Research Groups

Department of Archaeology

Is supervised by