Tim Winter

Professor, FAHA

  • The University of Western Australia (M259), 35 Stirling Highway, Rm 218, School of Social Sciences

    6009 Perth


  • Source: Scopus
  • Calculated using citation counts from Scopus for publications in the UWA Profiles and Research Repository
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Personal profile


A sociologist by training, much of my work centres around the cultural past as a vector of nationalism, diplomacy, geopolitics and economic development. 

I currently examine China's Belt and Road Initiative as a vast platform for heritage diplomacy. This work develops new knowledge about 21st Century diplomacy and the political drivers of heritage preservation today. The research also addresses the Silk Road as one of the most compelling geocultural concepts of the modern era, and how the idea of its revival in the 21st century is creating new forms of cultural globalization and economic and politics ties across Eurasia.  

I am also working on a book that conceptualises heritage diplomacy in historical terms. This work addresses the role culture and heritage conservation have played in international relations, and how they come to be institutionally structured via an elaborate dance of cosmopolitanism and national interest. 

Having previously held positions in Singapore, Sydney and Melbourne, I have recently taken up a professorship in Critical Heritage Studies at the University of Western Australia. Please get in touch if you have thoughts on doing a PhD, a masters in heritage studies or projects related to the Silk Roads.

Current PhD Supervision:

Charlotte Papillaud Looram ‘Treasures of the Maritime Silk Roads: A reconfiguration of the market for underwater cultural heritage

Rani Singh ‘Future belongs to History: A pragmatic revival of Buddhist heritage and the Belt and Road Initiative

Chen Zhixin, ‘The Changing China Discourse on Australian Media: Filling the Gap Between Perspective and Perception in an Era of Belt and Road

Roles and responsibilities

Australian Research Council Future Fellow, 2018-21

President, Association of Critical Heritage Studies, 2014 - 2017

ICOMOS Australia, Executive Committee Member, 2013-6

Production Editor: Historic Environment, 2008-15

Future research

Funding overview

£299,838.59 Living with Violent Heritage: Contests and coexistence in post-war Sri Lanka, British Academy - Heritage, Dignity and Violence 2019 Programme (2019-2021)

$26,183 The Maritime Silk Road: Historicizing connected pasts across the Indian Ocean and East Asia, UWA Research Collaboration Award 2019

$1,002,574 Heritage diplomacy and One Belt One Road, ARC Future Fellowship 2017 (2018-21)

$1,220,000 Cool living heritage in Qatar: sustainable alternatives to air-conditioned urban development, Qatar National Research Foundation 7th Round, 2015-17 (Lead CI) 2014

$332,000 The Crisis in International Heritage Conservation in an Age of Shifting Global Power, Australian Research Council Discovery 2014-6 (Lead CI) 2013

$195,000 Cool living heritage in Southeast Asia: sustainable alternatives to air-conditioned cities, Australian Research Council Discovery 2012-4 (Lead CI) 2011

$25,000 Shanghai Expo: the world in a city, University of Western Sydney Project Funding (Sole CI) 2010

$81,000 Cultural Heritage in Conflict Transformation Societies, Australian Research Council Discovery, 2010-12 (Sole CI) 2009


Critical heritage studies, Belt and Road, Asia, cultural politics, sustainability, heritage diplomacy, cultural diplomacy.

Industry keywords

  • Built Environment
  • Tourism

Research expertise keywords

  • Heritage studies
  • Critical Heritage
  • Cultural Tourism
  • Geopolitics
  • Belt and Road
  • Heritage Diplomacy
  • Cultural Heritage
  • Heritage Conservation
  • Asia
  • Indo Ocean Region
  • Cultural Politics
  • Sustainability


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