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Katie A. Paul: Cultural Racketeering in Egypt 2017-10-26T04:18:54+00:00

Cultural Racketeering in Egypt

kp egyptKatie A. Paul is the Chief of Staff at the Antiquities Coalition (AC). Additionally, she serves as an affiliated Researcher at The George Washington University Capitol Archaeological Institute (CAI). For the past six years her research has focused on the role of media, social media, and new technologies in monitoring and recording patterns of cultural racketeering in nations in crisis. This work contributes to the International Coalition to Protect Egyptian Antiquities (ICPEA), an initiative of the AC. In addition to her advocacy work for the CAI and ICPEA, and her research on cultural racketeering, she serves on the Cultural Heritage Policy Committee of the Archaeological Institute of America.

Paul’s most recent research, a five-year case study on patterns of heritage crimes in post-Arab Spring Egypt, utilized media and social media reports from activists, government agencies, reporters and archaeological experts that have continuously streamed out of Egypt since January 25th, 2011. By examining all of the reports related to cultural heritage crimes over a five year period, she was able to glean valuable information on the patterns and cycles of heritage crimes in Egypt that also have applications in the greater Middle East and North African region and across the globe.

A month-by-month graphing of various types of heritage threats, the location classifications where they occur, and the demographics of those involved reveals clear and recurring patterns that have the potential to point to anticipated events. This research is geared toward solutions that work on the ground for those governments dealing with heritage threats head on.

In addition to Egypt, Paul is continually updating the Antiquities Coalition’s #CultureUnderThreat Maps to monitor patterns in destruction of cultural heritage sites across the Middle East and North Africa.

Looting and Graffiti in Egypt

Photos from March 2015, Courtesy of Katie A. Paul

The Pyramids and Great Sphinx of Giza
Giza, Egypt

Before – The Great Sphinx of Giza: Katie A. Paul: March 2008
After – The Great Sphinx of Giza: Katie A. Paul: March 2015

The Great Sphinx of Giza is among the most famous ancient sites in history. Seated on the Giza Plateau in front of the last standing wonders of the ancient world, the Sphinx has not only protected the Great Pyramids for more than 4,000 years but has drawn historians, conquerors and travelers to visit Egypt for centuries.

Since the Great Sphinx and Pyramids of Giza were declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979, they have attracted even more travelers to the area. Tourism is a vital lifeline for the preservation and protection of ancient and historic sites across the globe, bringing in billions of dollars in revenue.

At the height of Egypt’s tourism industry in 2010, the country saw a record-breaking 14.7 million visitors bringing in more than $13.6 billion in revenue and foreign currency. However, after the instability following the January 2011 Egyptian Revolution, the number of tourists visiting Egypt’s ancient wonders plummeted, with only 9.5 million tourists recorded in 2013. This decline represents a loss of more than $7 billion in tourism revenue. As of 2016, the tourism economy of Egypt – and the broader region – continues to struggle for recovery.

Katie A. Paul in the News

Archaeology Channel Conference Explores Relationship Between Media and Cultural Heritage

Archaeology Channel Conference Explores Relationship Between Media and Cultural Heritage The fourteenth annual Archaeology Channel Conference on Cultural Heritage Media met in Eugene, Oregon from May 3-7. The conference series initially began as an extension [...]

By | May 15th, 2017|0 Comments

Repatriating the Past: Filling the Holes in Egypt’s History Left by Looting – Katie A. Paul, The Antiquities Coalition

 Repatriating the Past: Filling the Holes in Egypt’s History Left by Looting – Katie A. Paul, The Antiquities Coalition UPON ENTERING THE EGYPTIAN MUSEUM AS TOURISTS SCAN THE CASES OF “WONDERFUL THINGS,” ONE CASE CONTAINING [...]

By | November 20th, 2016|0 Comments