Call for Papers: Conservation Ethics and Decision-Making

We are extending the invitation to submit proposals for a one-day symposium to explore themes of conservation ethics and decision-making. The new deadline is 18 June. 

The symposium will take place in-person at Durham University on 20 November, and is being held celebration of the conclusion of a year-long project looking at the conservation, preservation and interpretation of the University's copy of William Shakespeare's First Folio, which was recovered in a disbound and heavily vandalised state in 2008 a decade after its theft. The course of our project has compelled us to ask questions like, "What does it mean to a local community to possess a book that has assumed the status of a cultural icon? How do we celebrate the future of a book while preserving its history? What role does a binding play in the lifetime of a rare book?" The answers have consistently surprised and excited us, causing us to rethink how we understand the objects we conserve, how we make our decisions based on that understanding, and how our decisions affect the community surrounding a book. 

We invite proposals concerning difficult conservation decisions, collaborative decision approaches and methods, and community-centric conservation outcomes. We are eager to hear from conservators at all stages in their career including students, as well as community members from associated fields whose work has influenced or been influenced by conservation decisions. Those who would like to present about these themes are invited to submit proposals for a 20-minute presentation here: Shakespeare First Folio symposium speakers - expression of interest ( We also welcome joint panel discussions, and ask you to contact us at to make arrangements. The submission period is now open until 18 June 2024.