General programme

Monday 2 October


Location: Old City Hall, ground floor

09:30 - 12:30

EFFORTS Board Meeting (for Board members and invitees)

Location: Old City Hall, Markt 78 (Mérret room, -1 floor)

12:30 - 13:30 

Board lunch (for participants at the Board meeting)

14:30 - 15:00


15:00 - 16:30

EFFORTS ANNUAL GENERAL ASSEMBLY (Oude Raadszaal, 1st floor) (for EFFORTS members and invitees)

16:30 - 17:00 

Jos Notermans, Menno van Coehoornstichting, 'Maastricht a sample card of fortification heritage'

Location: Old City Hall, Markt 78 (Oude Raadszaal, 1st floor)


Open the Gates!

New realities for fortified heritage.

The 2023 European Federation of Fortified Sites 8th Congress in the timeless city of Maastricht is an excellent occasion to continue the work of our members, cities, regions, universities, associations and experts as they focus on issues like heritage reuse, spatial planning, mobility, inclusion and green and innovative heritage design.

In the frame of the ongoing EFFORTS Goes Green project, EFFORTS and its members want to be ready for the coming years in which the quality of life of our citizens will ever more connected to their identity and their future needs. Fortification is at the crossroads of these themes. With the Maastricht congress this year, and building on the results of the last congresses, we want you to have the occasion to participate on the themes that matter:  integrating communities,  green energy and rethinking tourism.

The congress will be an interactive one, with site visits, discussions in the town, panels and two pitch sessions. The word is yours !


Welcome by the Mayor of Maastricht and The President of EFFORTS

17:15 - 19:00

Welcome Reception

Tuesday 3 October

EFFORTS Congress (1)

Location: Muziekgieterij, Boschstraat 5

08:00 - 09:00

Location: Central hall

09:00 - 09:30

Welcome and introduction to the themas

Presentation Rafaël DEROO, Secretary of EFFORTS

  • Jeroen LENAERS, Member of the European Parliament, NL
  • Tibor NAVRACSICS, Minister for Land Development, former EU Commissioner for Culture, presently, HU
  • Csilla HEGEDÜS, deputy director of the Northwest Regional Development Agency, former Secretary of State for European Investments and projects, RO
  • Anne-Wil MARIS, Zuiderwaterlinie director, vice-president EFFORTS


Section presentation : Gilbert SOETERS, municipal archaeologist, Municipality of Maastricht

09:30 - 12:30

On the way to ‘FARO’, local heritage community & bottom-up approach: European values for the next generations?


In the New European Bauhaus deal, participation of the citizens of Europe in their cultural heritage is a main topic. We state that the 2005 Faro Convention on the value of cultural heritage for society is the way we should reach this objective.  The ratification of the Faro Convention is due this year in the Netherlands. Let us have a closer look at this convention and see what it exactly means. What is heritage participation? How do you get involvement from youth, volunteers or from other parts of society? What is the economical and societal value of volunteers? How do you organise commitment bottom-up? What is the (changing) role of the public institutions? What does this mean for managing fortified cities or defence line regions?

09:30 - 10:00

The Faro Convention in the Netherlands, Michaela HANSSEN, FARO-programme, heritage and participation leader Rijksdienst voor Cultureel Erfgoed, NL

10:00 - 10:30

How do you achieve heritage participation?, Gerco MEIJER, : eigenaar bunkerQ, lid bestuur ICOMOS Nederland, coördinator Europa ICOFORT

10:30 - 11:00

Coffee break

11:00 - 12:30 


Towards a new vision on heritage participation. 3 Groups of max 50 pp. (REGISTRATION of first and second choice by sending a mail to )

  1. WHO’S HERITAGE IS IT? - citizens and cities: deciding on heritage or letting it go. (Gilbert Soeters)
  2. EDUCATING THE PUBLIC - what does it want to hear? Between information and communication. (Juke van Niekerk, director Stichting Liniebreed Ondernemen)
  3. DISSONANT HERITAGE - from which different angles to discuss this theme? How to deal with societal unease? (Rafaël Deroo, secretary general EFFORTS)

12:30 - 13:30


Location: Muziekgieterij together with Athos


Section presentation: Anne-Wil MARIS

13:30 - 15:25

Sustainable Energy

The European Green Deal is Europe’s response to the grand challenges posed to our societies by climate change and aims to make Europe the first climate-neutral continent by 2050.
The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has predicted that cultural heritage is severely threatened by climate change - most evident threats stem from extreme climatic events, such as severe rainfall, prolonged heatwaves, droughts, strong winds and sea-level rise – all of which will increase dramatically in the future if immediate measures are not taken to mitigate the risks. One of them is climate adaptation and sustainable energy. This is about the interaction of heritage buildings and new technologies in Heating, Ventilation, Air-Conditioning and Refrigeration (HVACR).  We hope that the exchange of knowledge and experiences about sustainable measurements in fortifications and by weighing its pros and contras, will reinvigorate you to face the challenges.

13:30 - 14:00

Tom van NOUHUYS, director Forteiland Pampus, NL

14:00 - 14:20

Michiel VAN BALEN, partner-architect Miss Myagi, BE

14:20 - 14:40

Sally LIERMAN, associate Atelier Romain, BE

14:40 - 15:10

European support schemes in sustainable investments, Bruno ROSSIGNOL, Head of Climate and Heritage, European Investment Bank Institute (EIBI, LUX)

15:10 - 16:00

PITCHES and DISCUSSION with the ‘Best Practises’ speakers

  • The Citadel of Diest, Bart SEVERI, head of unit Housing and Entrepreneurship, City of Diest, BE
  • 3Dscans of underground fortifications in Maastricht, Leander GOOR, Cursor AM, NL

16:00 - 18:00


Walk to the Talk:  visiting dilemma venues for expert judgement and discussion, with participants in fortification developments in Maastricht

Visiting case-venues in Maastricht:

  • CASE 1. Wall/roundel, Rob SMEETS (Municipality of Maastricht): innovative solutions for renovation and governance of stakeholders, sustainable tourism or just recreating the old situation?
  • CASE 2. Casemate C, Peter DE RONDE (Municipality of Maastricht) presently a ruin within an area of industrial heritage sites - how to work with investment partners? What does the public want in such an area?
  • CASE 3. Fort Willem, Koos CONSTEN (Stichting Maastricht Vestingstad): part of the site is for private use - how to insert the heritage use in workable regulations;

18:00 - 18:30

Interview about proposed solutions to the dilemmas and discussion of the 3 guides.
Interviewer: Wim DEBAENE, project leader Regionale Landschappen, BE


Dinner (own invitation)


Vauban  - The Siege of Maastricht in 1673,  Jeroen VAN DER WERF, Stichting Menno van Coehoorn, NL

Location: Centre Céramique, Avenue Céramique 50 (free entrance for participants EFFORTS congress)

Please use the entrance via Sonnevillelunet (Little Brige).

Wednesday 4 October

EFFORTS Congress (2)

Location: Muziekgieterij, Boschstraat 5


08:30 - 09:00


09:00 - 10:30

Rethinking Tourism

Section presentation : Eva ROELS, Head of unit Tourism Department Oudenaarde, BE

For many years the use of cultural capital to enhance the visitor experience in cities (cultural tourism) has been a major theme. However, the expected decrease in long-distance travel as well as the measures to combat climate change will challenge this. How can we develop real sustainable tourism?  Moreover, how does it really add value to a venue? Which are the do’s and don’t’s and who should decide on this? Which role does storytelling have in this development and what exactly is storytelling? How do you catch the attention of your audience and keep its involvement? Which story is there to tell about your fortified heritage?

09:00 - 09:20

Rethinking Representation - Heritage as a driver for change, Marc KOCKEN, ICOMOS Netherlands/ Erfgoed Zeeland

09:20 - 09:40

An Emotional Fort: Mobile emotion tracking of natural and built heritage, Ondrej MITAS, Breda University of Applied Sciences (BUAS), Bratislava, SK

09:40 - 10:30

Pitches sustainable tourism panel

  • Dennis VAN NIEUWENHUIJZENZ, Wellington Barrier project and Icomos Vlaanderen-Brussel
  • Storytelling and experience design, Moniek HOVER, professor of Storytelling, Breda University of Applied Sciences, NL
  • Oresta REMESHYLO-RYBCHYNSKA, Associate Professor Lviv Polytechnic National University, UA
  • Daniele SFERRA, Fondazione Forte Marghera, IT


 Location: Large Hall - plenary discussion

10:30 - 11:00

Coffee break


11:00 - 12:15



‘The EFFORTS Court in session

Section presentation: Maarten DE WINTER

After the sessions on the challenges we are all facing, we would like to know if we should respond to them each on our own or look for partnerships, and should these be European partnerships or local ones? Are there opportunities to get European funding for our projects and how do we manage this? And what happens when the management of European projects faces us with other challenges? Here we do not want to discuss best practices but rather the obstacles you encounter when facing the challenges of a European project. Submit your ‘obstacle case’ to a panel of EFFORTS experts and they will share their counsel with you and the public. The public will be invited to give their input on the pitches.

Pitches to the ‘EFFORTS Court’ will be made by

  • Jiři HOFMAN, Terezín City of Change, CZ
  • Sander BOOMS, development advisor City of Culemborg, NL
  • Kristine KLINKHAMMER ADLER-NISSEN, director Garderhøjfortet, City of Gentofte, DA
  • Egidijus BAGDONAS, director Kaunas Fortress Park, Kaunas, LT


Darragh Ó’SÚILLEABHÁIN (European project manager, Cork County, IE)

Sabina DIMITRIU (vice-director EU funding, Urbasofia, RO)

Huibert CRIJNS (EU funds advisor, Municipality of ‘s-Hertogenbosch, NL)

12:15 - 13:15


Location: Muziekgieterij together with Athos

13:15 - 16:00

Finale plenary

13:15 - 13:40

Final speaker: Maastricht: fortress as symbol of dynamic heritage Wim HUPPERETZ, director Centre Céramique Maastricht, NL

13:40 - 13:50

The ‘EFFORTS Maastricht Manisfesto’, Marianne van der SLOOT, alderwoman for heritage, city of ’s-Hertogenbosch – Zuiderwaterlinie, NL

13:50 - 14:00

Presentation of the 2023 EFFORTS Award, Olha TIKHONOVA, Ass. prof. CIAUD - U. of Lisbon and EFFORTS advisor, UA,  with Volodomyr GAIDAR, director Creative Ideas Hub, City of Ivano-Frankivsk, UA

14:00 - 14:10

Presentation of the EFFORTS-Forte Cultura European Fortress Summer and the Night of Fortresses 2023, Jelena KOLBE, European Fortress Summer

14:10 - 14:20

Presentation of EFFORTS congress venue 2024

14:20 - 15:30

Coffee break and farewell

16:00 - 18:00

Choice to visit the ‘1673’ exhibition in Centre Céramique or Helpoort Fortification Museum (on demand)

Thursday 5 October


Start at back of Muziekgieterij (busses)


Start at back Muziekgieterij (busses)

09:00 - 12:30

Excursion 1: Walk in Lage Fronten and visit Casemates Hoge Fronten (Stichting Maastricht Vestingstad)



Return by busses to Maastricht


End / Lunch on own initiative