Non-governmental organizations, experts, centres of expertise and research institutes


In the text of the Convention

  1. Article 9 - Accreditation of advisory organizations

  2. Article 15 - Participation of communities, groups and individuals


  • Procedure of accreditation and list of accredited NGOs
  • 15/01/2015: deadline to submit reports: the first 97 NGOs to be accredited in 2010 should submit their Form ICH-08 Report by 15 January 2015. NGOs report on their contribution to the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage and implementation of the Convention at the national level, as well as to the work of the Committee and their capacities to provide advisory services to it

NGOs, experts, centres of expertise and research institutes play vital roles in safeguarding intangible cultural heritage. Chapter III of the Operational Directives explain that States Parties must ensure the participation of communities who are the bearers of intangible cultural heritage and should involve civil society in the implementation of the Convention at the national and international levels.

NGOs and the 2003 Convention

At the national level, States Parties are encouraged to involve NGOs in their safeguarding efforts especially in the identification and definition of intangible cultural heritage since NGOs are often best placed to work directly with heritage communities.

At the international level, accredited NGOs may be invited by the Intergovernmental Committee to provide advisory services. The General Assembly already approved the accreditation of more than 150 NGOs (97 at its third session, in 2010, 59 in 2012 and 22 in 2014). NGOs whose activities are in the field of intangible cultural heritage are welcome to request accreditation, particularly those from developing countries.

Experts, centres of expertise and research institutes

States Parties are encouraged to create a coordination mechanism to facilitate the participation of communities, groups and, where applicable, individuals, as well as experts, centres of expertise and research institutes, in particular in:

States Parties are also encouraged to establish and regularly update, in a manner geared to their own situation, a directory of such stakeholders that could undertake ‘scientific, technical and artistic studies…with a view to effective safeguarding of the intangible cultural heritage’ (Article 13.c).

Evaluation Body

On an experimental basis, the Intergovernmental Committee has set up a consultative body to be known as “Evaluation Body” composed of twelve members appointed by the Committee: six experts qualified in the various fields of the intangible cultural heritage representatives of States Parties non-Members of the Committee and six accredited non-governmental organizations.
The Evaluation Body is to undertake tasks of examining:

and to formulate recommendations and submit them to the Committee for decision during its annual meeting.