Stefan Simon

Yale Affiliated Fellow


Stefan Simon is Director of Global Cultural Heritage Initiatives at Yale’s Institute for the Preservation of Cultural Heritage (IPCH), dedicated to advancing the field of heritage science through transdisciplinary research, education and training, as well as practice and advocacy.

Trained as a conservation scientist, Simon earned his Ph.D. in Chemistry from the Ludwig Maximilian University, Munich. He has broad experience in scientific research, specializing in material deterioration diagnostics, microanalytics, climatology, and non-destructive mechanical testing. Simon served as Director of the Rathgen Research Laboratory with the National Museums in Berlin and as a Council Member and Vice President of ICCROM, the International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property. He is the current President of the International Council on Monuments and Sites’ (ICOMOS) Scientific Committee for Stone (ISCS).

As Inaugural Director of Yale IPCH, Stefan Simon prioritized the advancement of sustainable conservation strategies triggered by global climate change and the green museum debate, the development of analytical technologies and questions of conservation documentation and access in the digital age. Dr. Simon is a leading voice in the international culture in crisis debate and involved in various collaborative efforts to document and preserve cultural heritage. He is also acting on public stage as advocate against illicit traffic of cultural property and for the study of authenticity questions.

Between 2001 and 2005 he led the Building Materials Section at the Getty Conservation Institute, Los Angeles. Simon is a corresponding member of the German Archaeological Institute, and has been recognized with Honorary Professorships at X´ian Jiaotong University, China, and the Technical University Berlin. He has co-authored and published more than 125 articles on the preservation of cultural heritage.