Meetings on intangible cultural heritage (co-)organized by UNESCO
10th session of the Intergovernmental Committee30-11-2015/04-12-2015, _ (Namibia)
Developing a follow-up and evaluation mechanism for capacity-building activities01/03-06-2015, Paris (France)
UNESCO put in place since 2009 a global capacity-building programme to assist countries in building the institutional and professional environment required for the effective safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage. The programme is part of global and national efforts to attain long-term development goals. It intends to assist beneficiary countries with making development more sustainable, ensuring the viability of the intangible cultural heritage present in their territories and strengthening relations within and between communities, through the effective implementation of the Convention. However, stakeholders interviewed stressed the importance of capacity building for its successful implementation and many considered the capacity-building programme to be the most important of all mechanisms established so far. A systematic monitoring mechanism would allow UNESCO to follow up several months and years after the results and impact of these capacity-building interventions at the country level. While some information on project results, strengths and weaknesses is available in reports on project implementation, review meetings and facilitators’ assessments at the end of training delivery, no longer term analysis exists yet on any sustained behaviour or structural change (different approaches or practices used) and on the ultimate impact resulting from UNESCO’s intervention through capacity-building activities: improved inventories, better policy and legislative environment, increased community involvement, successful participation in international mechanisms, etc.
Supported by the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, UNESCO has embarked on the establishment of a follow-up and evaluation mechanism for activities implemented within the context of the global capacity-building strategy.
Such mechanism is challenging and will require creative thinking and commitment from key constituents. The involvement of all constituents — national counterparts, including national commissions, UNESCO Field Offices, the Intangible Cultural Heritage Section at Headquarters, but also all relevant other stakeholders — is indispensable.
Palestinian Law on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage18/19-05-2015, Ramallah (Palestine)
The workshop, which is organized by the Palestinian Ministry of Culture and the UNESCO Ramallah Office, will include participants from various ministries, the Palestinian National Commission for Education, Culture and Science, relevant civil society organizations and research institutions. They will provide their inputs and perspectives to the draft Law in line with the principles and provisions of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage ratified by Palestine in 2011. Once finalized, the draft Law will be submitted to the relevant Palestinian authorities for endorsement.
The workshop is a continuation of a process that started in 2012 when the Ministry of Culture with UNESCO’s technical support and through broad consultation with civil society institutions, prepared an initial draft. The Law will be an important safeguarding measure and together with the participatory process through which it emerged, demonstrate the strong commitment of national authorities to ensure the viability of living heritage in Palestine.
Training workshop on the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage - Moving towards an ICH Inventory for a State of Goa27/28-04-2015, Goa, India (India)
UNESCO New Delhi office was the guest of the Directorate of Art and Culture, Government of Goa on 27 and 28 April 2015 to orgnaize a two-day training workshop on UNESCO 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, with a particular focus on inventory making.
Animated by UNESCO resource persons – Dr Shubha Chaudhuri (Director of Archives and Research Centre for Ethnomusicology), Ananya Bhattacharya (Director, Contact Base / banglanatak dot com), and Moe Chiba (Chief, Culture Sector, UNESCO New Delhi), some 27 professionals from Goa took part in the lecture-cum practical sessions to discuss how an inventory of ICH for the State of Goa would look like and what could be the working methodologies.
In India, the protection of heritage is the responsibility of both the Union Government and State Governments. In a vast country such as India with diverse cultural traditions, it could be more effective if each State Government takes the responsibility of drawing up the inventory and implementing the safeguarding plan rather than expecting the Central Government’s initiative. Accordingly, UNESCO New Delhi, in partnership with Sangeet Natak Academi has started since last year the sensitization of State level government officers on the UNESCO Convention. Following the workshop in Delhi in December 2014, the Government of Goa is the very first State to have expressed its willingness to move forward in development of the State-level ICH inventory. The two-day workshop was not intended to provide any clear-cut advice on how an ICH inventory of Goa should be, but rather aimed at steering the attention of the participants on those issues that need to be discussed and planned prior to conducting any survey and data collection for the Inventory. These include the size of the inventory and the type of ICH elements to be covered, data to be collected for each of the ICH elements, method of data organization, modalities of data sourcing, intended follow-up action for the ICH elements under the inventory etc.
ADTCA needs assessment in Sudan03/10-04-2015, Khartoum (Sudan)
The main objective of the mission is working closely with the responsible national cultural institution to identify institutional capacities, perspective, human resource needs of whom are working in the Intangible Culture heritage sector. The outcome of the mission is to develop a realistic project proposal within the local context in the field of ICH safeguarding. Later on the project proposal will be funded by Abu Dubai Tourism and Culture Authority (ADTCA).The consultant mission was organized in partnership with the Intangible Cultural Heritage section – UNESCO- HQ, the UNESCO’s Khartoum Office and the Federal Ministry of Culture in Sudan. The mission was conducted by the expert Ms Marina Calvo.
Expert meeting on a model code of ethics for intangible cultural heritage30-03-2015/01-04-2015, Valencia (Spain)
In 2012, at its seventh session, the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) invited UNESCO’s Secretariat ‘to initiate work on a model code of ethics and to report on it to a next session of the Committee’ (Decision 7.COM 6: English|French). In order to initiate this important work, the Secretariat is organizing the present meeting, generously hosted by the Kingdom of Spain and co-funded by Spain and the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
The aim of the meeting is to discuss the main lines that should figure into codes of ethics for intangible cultural heritage. This three-day meeting will bring together twelve experts from different UNESCO Member States as well as four members of the Secretariat. The results of the meeting will be presented to the Director-General of UNESCO and subsequently examined by the Committee when it meets for its tenth session in Namibia from 30 November to 4 December 2015.
Debates during the meeting will focus on:
- The core values of the Convention that should be integrated into codes of ethics for ICH (e.g. values such as primacy of communities, respect for human rights and cultural diversity, limits on access to heritage and possession of heritage);
- General scope of codes of ethics for ICH. The comparative advantages of being more comprehensive or more focused on specific sectors. The multiple possible addressees (e.g. State agents, civil society, the private sector, the media, tourism operators, tourists, etc.);
- The specific ethical principles that should be included in codes of ethics for ICH (e.g. sector-specific and/or audience-specific principles, resulting from cross-referencing core values of the Convention against specific sectors or addressees);
- The possible processes that could be used to elaborate one or more model codes of ethics for ICH and to proceed from a model to specific codes adapted to different contexts at the regional, national and subnational levels (e.g. examples of other model codes and how they were developed, then how they were applied and/or turned into specific codes).
Workshop on community-based inventorying of living heritage 30-03-2015/10-04-2015, Sao Tome and Principe (Sao Tome and Principe)
The National Directorate of Culture of Sao Tome and Principe in cooperation with UNESCO convenes a workshop on the elaboration of community-based inventories of living heritage in the spirit of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage. The workshop, which will take place from 30 March to 10 April 2015 in the capital of Sao Tome, will introduce the concepts, objectives and methods of inventorying and includes practical field work in the community of Boa Morte.
As part of the capacity-building project to reinforce the safeguarding of living heritage in the Portuguese speaking countries in Africa (PALOP), the workshop will gather some 25 Santomean particpants including stakeholders from local to national levels. With the aim to strengthen regional cooperation among PALOP countries the training will be co-facilitated by a Brazilian and a Mozambican expert who has been previously trained through the same programme. Moreover, a culture officer from Cabo Verde will attend the workshop in view of similar activities planned in the Archipelago off the coast of Western Africa.
This workshop is made possible thanks to the generous contribution from the Government of Norway to the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
Joint workshop on community-based inventorying of intangible cultural heritage 22/28-02-2015, Willemstad (Curaçao)
Having completed the first joint training on the implementation of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage last September, representatives of the Dutch Caribbean (Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao, Saba, Sint Eustatius, and Sint Maarten) are taking the next significant step in the implementation of a coordinated strategy to safeguard their living heritage.
From 22 to 28 February 2015, community practitioners, as well as governmental and non-governmental experts, will gather in Curacao for a workshop on community-based inventorying of intangible cultural heritage with the primary aim to develop a framework for the inventory of their heritage. The core of the workshop will focus on community participation in the identification and definition of intangible cultural heritage, data collection, organization and management, laying the foundation not only for a 5-day field inventorying exercise to follow in the six respective islands, but for future inventorying and safeguarding work.
Organized by the UNESCO Kingston Cluster Office for the Caribbean in close cooperation with national partners across the islands, this workshop is a part of a capacity-building project to reinforce the safeguarding of living heritage in the Dutch Caribbean and Suriname, made possible thanks to the generous contribution from the Government of the Netherlands to the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
TRAINING ON THE 2003 CONVENTION FOR THE SAFEGUARDING OF INTANGIBLE CULTURAL HERITAGE In the framework of the project:
Emergency Safeguarding of the Syrian Cultural Heritage
In the framework of the project:
Training of trainers workshop on safeguarding plans and policy support for intangible cultural heritage for facilitators from the Asia-Pacific Region19/23-01-2015, Shenzhen (China)
Training of trainers workshop on safeguarding in Asia-Pacific
What are the knowledge and skills required to elaborate safeguarding plans for intangible cultural heritage effectively? How to acquire these competencies successfully? These questions are at the centre of a training workshop with eleven expert facilitators and ten UNESCO culture officers involved in implementing the global capacity-building strategy for safeguarding intangible cultural heritage in the Asia Pacific region. Participants will test a new interactive methodology that UNESCO elaborated for this purpose and, furthermore, discuss new training approaches in two other thematic areas: policy development and gender.
The International Training Centre for Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific Region (CRIHAP) is hosting and generously supporting this training of trainers workshop on safeguarding plans and policy support, which will take place from 19 to 23 January 2015 in Shenzhen, China. Five specialists from China identified by CRIHAP are participating as observers in the training that UNESCO is co-facilitating together with Mr. Rieks Smeets and Ms. Janet Blake, both senior specialists on the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
The Shenzhen training workshop on safeguarding plans and policy support for intangible cultural heritage is addressed to UNESCO-trained facilitators from the Asia-Pacific Region who have substantial experience in providing training and advisory services in the context of UNESCO’s global capacity building strategy for the effective implementation of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003). It will furthermore welcome some additional experts selected to become future facilitators together with colleagues from the Region’s Field Offices and five Chinese experts. In total the workshop will bring together 26 participants.
The focus of the training is on elaborating safeguarding plans, because this theme was identified as a priority need in recent programme review meetings held with facilitators and Field Office colleagues in several regions. Indeed, without mastering the skills and knowledge required to elaborate solid plans for safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, safeguarding is not sustainable. Well-conceived, time-bound and budgeted safeguarding plans are furthermore a requirement for obtaining International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for safeguarding projects and for preparing nomination files for the Urgent Safeguarding List.
Therefore, the Intangible Cultural Heritage Section developed a methodology on this topic, and will invite participating experts to provide feedback in order to finalize the materials. Similarly, UNESCO will share with participants for feedback and advice the progress made in developing training approaches and materials on two other themes: policy development and gender. These topics figured prominently in the recent evaluation of UNESCO’s standard-setting work of the Culture Sector, which concluded that they deserve more attention in the capacity-building programme. The Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage endorsed the recommendation in a decision about the follow-up to the Evaluation (DECISION 8.COM 5.c.1).
The purpose of the training workshop is thus two-fold: it intends to upgrade participants’ competencies in the areas of safeguarding, policy development and gender, while at the same time drawing upon experts’ knowledge and experience for advice.