Monastic heritage represents an important part of European heritage. Historically, monasteries served not only the transmission of Christian faith, but were also economic hotspots for the exchange of goods and services. Today, there are different "business models" for monasteries: some are still organised and led by their Orders with a focus on ecclesiastical duties. The majority is either profaned or (co)financed by public authorities on a regional level. They operate as companies, by employing administrative, technical and managing staff, and by paying taxes and social costs.
Monastic products include e.g. handcrafted soaps and lotions, textiles, food like bread, marmalade, liquors, beer, and wine, as well as religious gadgets. The fabrication of such products is an economic opportunity for many monasteries to gain income for their preservation efforts as well as for creating employment for local actors, specifically in rural areas.
The principal goal of the SKIVRE project is to develop a multilingual training scheme for manufacturing and marketing high-quality European monasteries products. Staff and monks in the monasteries will receive training, but the project is also expected to generate additional employment for citizens in rural areas.
The project will develop a digital learning platform as well as a merchandising handbook for monastic products, including guidelines for professional production and marketing. Another intended outcome will be the publication of a book on historic crafts of monasteries and their potential for social entrepreneurship for citizens in rural areas of Europe.
The project is co-funded by the Erasmus+ programme, and will be conducted by a multidisciplinary partnership of media k (Germany), Future for Religious Heritage (Belgium), GUNET (Greece), INI-Novation (Bulgaria), Bronnbach Monastery (Germany) and Wissenschaftsinitiative Niederösterreich (Austria).
The SKIVRE project contributes to the year's Initiative 1 on sharing heritage.
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