Value of history

At last night’s Annual History Lecture in Sydney, Dr Stephen Gapps of the History Council of NSW launched a statement in New South Wales about the Value of History and called for its endorsement. This follows the national announcement by the four History Councils of NSW, South Australia, Western Australia and Victoria at the annual meeting of the Australian Historical Association held in Toowoomba on July 11.

The statement emphasises the value of studying the past and telling its stories.

The Value of History statement focuses on seven ways in which history is essential, by:

● shaping our identities,

● engaging us as citizens,

● creating inclusive communities,

● contributing to our economic well-being,

● teaching us to think critically and creatively,

● inspiring our leaders, and

● providing a foundation for future generations.

The History Councils call on individuals and organisations in Australia to endorse, share, and use this statement about the value of history in contemporary life. The ideas expressed in the statement can be incorporated into projects, funding applications, training materials, mission statements, websites, marketing materials, submissions and other organisational outlets.

Dr Stephen Gapps said: ‘With common agreement, commitment, and open conversation about why history is important, we believe the historical community can change perceptions of the value of history and articulate its important role in the public sphere.’

Each History Council is the peak body for organisations focused on history and heritage in their respective states. The four Australian History Councils have worked cooperatively to create the Value of History statement for all Australians to use.

The Value of History Statement can be endorsed in NSW on the HCNSW site:

/Public Release.