Guidelines and Case Studies


Public fascination with the architectural and archaeological heritage is well known, it is proven to be one of the main reasons for tourism according to the UN World Tourism Organisation. Historic buildings and archaeological monuments form a significant component Europe’s cultural heritage; they are the physical testimonies of European history and of the different events that led to the creation of the European landscape, as we know it today.

The documentation of built heritage increasingly avails of 3D scanning and other remote sensing technologies, which produces digital replicas in an accurate and fast way. Such digital models have a large range of uses, from the conservation and preservation of monuments to the communication of their cultural value to the public. They may also support in-depth analysis of their architectural and artistic features as well as allow the production of interpretive reconstructions of their past appearance.

The goal of the 3D-ICONS project, funded under the European Commission’s ICT Policy Support Programme which builds on the results of CARARE ( ) and 3D-COFORM ( ), was to provide Europeana with 3D models of architectural and archaeological monuments of remarkable cultural importance. The project brought together 16 partners from across Europe (11 countries) with relevant expertise in 3D modelling and digitization. The main purpose of the project was to produce around 4000 accurate 3D models which had to be processed into a simplified form in order to be visualized on low end personal computers and on the web.

The structure of this publication has been created with two distinct sections:


Documentation of the digitisation, modelling and online access pipeline for the creation of online 3d models of cultural heritage objects.

View Guidelines

Case Studies:

28 examples of 3D content creation by the 3D-ICONS partners across a range of monuments, architectural features and artefacts.

View Case Studies