Institutions, organizations, contacts

National institutions

Permanent Delegation of Greece to UNESCO
Maison de l’UNESCO
Bureau M2.35/37
1, rue Miollis
75732 PARIS Cedex 15

Hellenic National Commission for UNESCO
3, Akadimias St.
100 27 Athens

Designated authority for the use of the emblem:

This country did not designate yet any national authority in charge of the use of the emblem of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage

Read more on the use the emblem

UNESCO’s contacts

UNESCO headquarters (ICH Section)
Regional officer:
Nakata, Keiichi Julien (

Category 2 center(s)

Regional Centre for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage in South-Eastern Europe (Bulgaria)

Accredited NGOs located in this country

Name, address and sourceActivities related to ICH
Lykeion Ton Hellenidon
Lyceum Club of Greek Women - LCGW
Lyceum Club des femmes hellènes [fr]
17, Dimokritou str.
10673 Αthens
Tel.: +30-210 3611042; 3628978

Accreditation request No. 90286: English
Decision-making meeting: 5.GA - 2014

Year of creation: 1911

- performing arts
- traditional craftsmanship

Safeguarding measures:

- identification, documentation, research (including inventory-making)

Main countries where active:


Lyceum Club of Greek Women is a non-profit organization, founded in 1910. with main purposes:
a) to gather information regarding the Greek regional costumes.
b) to collect original research material.
c) to organize seminars and exhibitions on the subject of the Greek traditional costume.
At the beginning of 1994 -following a request by the president of the Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation, Ioanna Papantoniou- the Lyceum Club of Greek Women became a permanent collaborator of the National Archive of the Greek Traditional Costume and offered to provide a permanent home for the Archive on the premises of its Museum of the History of the Greek Costume.
The Lyceum Club of Greek Women has been promoting the traditional culture of rural Greece since its foundation in 1911.
After World War 11 systematic field research became the main approach for the collection of material and information concerning Greek folk life. Frequent visits to traditional communities ensure the accuracy of the results collected. Furthermore, these visits help develop a relationship and mutual respect between the members of the Club and the communities which share their traditions with the LCGW.
LCGW's 51 branches conduct research (on an on-going basis) on their regional traditions; they present their findings in the Club's publications and live performances.
Πελοποννησιακό Λαογραφικό Ίδρυμα
Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation - PFF
1, Vassileos Alexandrou str.,
21100 Nafplio
Tel.: +30-2752-0-28 379

Accreditation request No. 90107: English
Decision-making meeting: 4.GA - 2012

Year of creation: 1974

- oral traditions and expressions
- performing arts
- knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe
- traditional craftsmanship
- other
- Historical evolution of costume, its social economical and other aspects. Music & Dance as functions, pre-industrial technology, textile conservation as well as the connection between children, games and toys.

Safeguarding measures:

- identification, documentation, research (including inventory-making)
- preservation, protection
- promotion, enhancement
- transmission, (non-)formal education
- revitalization
- other
- Fieldwork Documentation

Main countries where active:


The Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation "V. Papantoniou" (PFF) has been compiling, arranging, preserving and publishing different elements of the Greek and foreign folk culture which is an important part of the intangible cultural heritage. The foundation wishes to stress the connection between anthropology and cultural studies, in order to project the aspects of contemporary social reality. A collection involves things, but the actual process of collecting presents relationships, between people as subjects,
and between things as objects. So we come to the fact that the things we choose to collect represent our perspective of what is important to be maintained for the next generations. The operation of the PFF is beneficial on different levels and this reflects its varying goals. First, among the museum's main goals is recording, the study of contemporary Greek culture in all its expressions, and the contribution to the scientific community through grants, publications and exhibitions. Another goal is the influence of the broad public through efforts to promote the importance of the documentation of folk culture. This field comprises of two sections, the first being the local community that gradually understands the importance of the historical and ethnological artefacts that could be donated to the museum, so that they are safeguarded for the next generations. The contribution of the local community can be separated in two equally important sectors, the objects and their experiences provided as oral testimonies. The second section concerns visitors, Greek as well as foreign, who experience the local heritage in a simple and interesting way during their free time. Additionally, one of the Foundation goals is training its personnel on subjects relevant to its collections. The most important contribution is its educational role that will
help future generations to experience, evaluate, maintain, and finally enjoy their very own cultural heritage.
Research Center:
The PFF's programmes of scientific activities include projects being conducted throughout Greece with the objective of recording and studying the folk culture, costume, music and dance, pre-industrial technology, children and children's toys.

National Traditional Costume Archives:
In 1989 the PFF in collaboration with the Museum of Greek Folk Art as part of the Ministry of Culture set up a research team, which, in the same year, started a pilot project on the study of the particular features of costumes in the border areas of Epirus. The main goal of this collaboration was to
establish a data bank and a research center.

Photographic Archives:
The photo and sound archives cover mainly all field work carried out by the PFF.

Collections Department - "The Aristeides programme":
The foundation's collections now number over 27,000 artifacts, covering all fields of study relating to contemporary Greek culture with emphasis on ethnography, fashion, and children. In order to improve the management of the collections, the "Aristeides" programme for electronic documentation was created and designed from the outset on the basis of the expertise of the Peloponnesian Folklore Foundation.

The Library:
The library focuses mainly on museology, ethnology, costume study, theatre and the child as well as history and art. Today, it has 10.250 book titles and 250 periodicals.

"Stathmos" The Children's Museum:
In October 1989, the PFF opened the first in Greece museum devoted to childhood. The museum, housed in the old railway station in Nafplion, consists of the old train depot and the station platform granted to the PFF by the Municipality of Nafplion. A part of the PFF collections related specifically to children is displayed and its educational programmes are aimed at: a) schools and organized groups, and b) the children of the Argolide.

Conservation Center:
In April 2000 the PFF started a Conservation Centre at Plapouta & Riga Palamidi street in Nafplion. It was donated by the "Stavros S. Niarchos" Foundation. The PFF was the first institution in Greece to establish a textile conservation department - since 1975.
The PFF has organized many exhibitions in Greece and abroad, trying to maintain and transmit intangible cultural heritage. The most important of which are the following:
-Nafplion 1981, the exhibition devoted to the production, elaboration and use of natural fibres in Greece mid 19th to mid 20th c. was the starting point of the interest in museology shown by all the small and many of the large museums in Greece. the pff won the European museum of the year
main award (EMYA) for that exhibition.
-Brussels 1982, Europalia - "Three cycles of Iife"
-Athens 1985, Athens cultural capital of Europe, "Greek costumes and jewellery, past and present"
-Dallas, Texas 1990, Salute to Greece (year devoted to Greece), "Greek Costumes"
-Dallas, Texas 1990, Salute to Greece (year devoted to Greece), "Children's drawings/Karagiozis"
-Athens 2004, Cultural Olympiad, "Ptychoseis = Folds + Pleats, Drapery from Ancient Greek Dress to 21st Century Fashion"
-Nafplion 2006, permanent exhibition, "The Greek Town, Nafplion 1822-1922"
-Nicosia, Cyprus, act. 2007 - Jan. 2008, "From Nafplion to Nicosia, The Collections of the PFF", Leventis Municipal Museum
-Nicosia, Cyprus, act. 2007, "6 Universal Greek Fashion Designers"
-Limassol, Cyprus, Dec. 2007 - Jan. 2008, "TO DRESS" Towards a Costume Culture Museum, Evagoras Lanitis Center.

The PFF publishes two original scientific journals, Ethnographica and Endymatologica as well as other publications that were connected with local communities and tried to maintain and transmit intangible cultural heritage. (see enclosed list of publications)
As a member of the International Council of Museums (ICOM), the PFF has organized the following conferences and meetings.
1. Meeting of the Work Group of the ICOM Costume Committee (1981).
2. Museums and School (1981).
3. Meeting of the ICOM Costume Committee held as part of the celebrations of the tenth anniversary of the foundation of the PFF.
4. Meeting of the International Committee for Education & Cultural Action (CECA) (1988), organized jointly with the Greek Section of ICOM.
5. Three-day seminar devoted to Museum andSchool for teachers in the Argolid (April 1990), organised jointly with the Ministry of Education, the Greek Section of ICOM, and the British Council.
6. Meeting of the ICOM International Documentation Committee (CIDOC) (annual meeting) (October 1990), organised jointly with the Greek Section of ICOM).
7. 17th symposium of the ICTftt International Council of Traditional Music, Work Group, jointly organized with the ICTM Experts in Ethnic Dance International Work Group.
8. 53rd annual meeting of the ICOM International Committee on Costume (1999).

Additionnal information:
The PFF experiences, cooperating with communities, groups and intangible cultural heritage practitioners, resulted of a research project that ran over the whole of Greece. Its aim was the documentation and study of folk culture, music and dance, pre-industrial technology and children games. The results of the research were published in the special scientific journals “Ethnographica” and “Endymatologica”. The “Essai sur la chanson populaire Grecque” by the distinguished Ethnomusicologist Samuel Baud-Bovy, was published with an introduction by Fivos Anoyianakis, while a double LP with music from South Italy and Sicily, was released as the result of a research project carried out by Lambros Liavas and Nicos Dionysopoulos. The research project in Cyprus was presented in a box set of 7 LPs and a textbook. Music supervision was made by the ethnomusicologist Fivos Anoyianakis. The whole research project was prepared by Alecos Iacovides. Exhibitions aim to maintain and transmit intangible heritage. (Brussels, EUROPALIA, Three cycles of life, Dallas, Texas, Salute to Greece, Children’s drawings/Karagiozis, Nafplion, The Production, Elaboration and Use of Natural Fibres in Greece, Athens, Athens Cultural Capital of Greece, Greek Costumes and Jewellery, past and present etc.)
Objects and artifacts are also considered parts of the intangible heritage when associated with those communities which recognize them as part of their cultural heritage. The PFF collections comprise objects associated with birth, christening, school puppet and shadow puppet (“karaghiozi”) figures, toys, costumes, as well as the fine art, design and engravings. The aim of this collection was to compile information about currently active oral history projects focused on objects, artefacts or projects including an oral history element. As the acquisition of items is made on a personal level, the complete fashion collections by Yiannis Tseklenis, the Fani Kazes collection of dolls in Greek local costume, the Yiannis Metsis archives and the history archive of Takis Mavros are among an individual’s most intimate possessions.
The PFF does not focus on performing arts; however in 2006 the PFF decided to decorate the internal of “Stathmos” (childhood museum) with the artwork of children under the guidelines of artists. The PFF also focused on the revival of social practices, rituals and festive events. Initially the programs included Greek dance lessons presented by locals to perform the acquaintance with the Greek Folk Music and traditional dress. Additionally, adults and children participated in games and pastimes. Then, the activities extended to the folk festivities: carols and bread-making at Christmas, maypole dancing and flying kites at Carnival, baskets with eggs and small ring-shaped biscuits at Easter etc. Finally the PFF collaborated with traditional craftsmen like the Shadow Puppet Theatre players Michopoulos and Yiannis Kokkoris.
This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment; it provides them with a sense of identity and continuity.
Πολιτιστικό Ίδρυμα Ομίλου Πειραιώς (ΠΙΟΠ)
Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation - PIOP
6 Angelou Geronta Str.
105 58 Athens
Tel.: +30 210 3256922; 3256923

Accreditation request No. 90287: English
Decision-making meeting: 5.GA - 2014

Year of creation: 1981

- knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe
- traditional craftsmanship

Safeguarding measures:

- identification, documentation, research (including inventory-making)
- preservation, protection
- promotion, enhancement
- transmission, (non-)formal education
- revitalization

Main countries where active:


The Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation (PIOP) is a non-profit institution that aims to:
1. Safeguard, record, and promote the traditional craftsmanship and technology of Greece.
2. Inform the public on the need to respect cultural identity, local craftsmanship and the environment, by implementing exemplary methods.
3. Raise awareness on craftsmanship, by creating and operating thematic museums that safeguard and promote the traditional know-how on the production of local products.
PIOP realises its statutory goals by conducting research on traditional craftsmanship and technology, inventorying their remnants, and disseminating the results by any available means, mostly in the Museums Network, such as lectures, seminars, conferences, exhibitions, publications, etc.
Fernand Braudel’s notion on technique (“tout est technique”) epitomises the inner course of PIOP’s work, urging us to embrace a holistic appreciation of non-material heritage. Though PIOP is devoted in the safeguarding of traditional craftsmanship and technology, it is our core belief that technology can be considered as a living process, granted that people’s key role in the creation and enhancement of any technological development is acknowledged. PIOP’s orientation towards the safeguarding of intangible heritage is highly supported by the Foundation’s threefold activity axes.
1. Research: research programmes are conducted, to safeguard local craftsmanship production that characterizes each region, and marks its cultural identity (e.g. mastic gum production on Chios island, olive-oil production in Sparta and on Lesvos island, marble-crafts on Tinos island, etc). Intangible heritage is safeguarded by emphasizing in testimonies and oral traditions, in order to reveal the context in which each productive activity is born.
2. Museums: the Museums Network creates the tangible shell where intangible heritage is safeguarded and transmitted. Under the scope of empowering local communities by activating sustainable development in the Greek regions, PIOP organizes cultural public outreach activities in the museums. These events are usually focused on placing the living expressions of intangible heritage in contemporary everyday life: craftsmanship presentations, oral history and testimonies, dance, music, story-telling, etc.
3. Publications: PIOP publishes a number of series that record and promote the intangible traces of the communities’ collective memory.
The Piraeus Bank Group Cultural Foundation (PIOP) is the first cultural institution in Greece that is solely dedicated to the safeguarding and enhancement of traditional craftsmanship and technology. Since the national cultural policy prioritizes the safeguarding of ancient and medieval cultural heritage, contemporary craftsmanship is a neglected domain of material culture in Greece that needs to be fostered. To this end, PIOP created a management model that enables collaboration between the public and private sector, ensuring thus the undertaking and realisation of joint cultural activities.
Since its foundation, PIOP has completed more than 40 interdisciplinary research programmes, inaugurated seven thematic technological museums in the Greek regions and published more than 130 book titles. In addition, more than 30 temporary exhibitions have been presented in the Museums Network, while numerous educational activities, seminars and workshops have been organized, with the participation of the local communities. PIOP also participates in national and international scientific fora, mainly in the domain of traditional technology.
Though dedicated to the safeguarding of the tangible remnants of traditional and contemporary craftsmanship, PIOP aims strongly to valorize the intangible cultural heritage that craftsmanship relates to. Hence, special attention is drawn to the documentation of oral tradition and testimonies, social practices, nature and the environment, etc, in order to ensure that the results of research over a certain craftsmanship remain within the context that created the craftsmanship itself.
The appreciation shown in the intangible context of local craftsmanship is the key-notion of all PIOP’s public outreach activities; aiming to enhance safeguarding, based on extensive interdisciplinary research, transmitted in a non-formal way, supported by the local communities and producing cultural added value and sustainable development through the preservation of intangible heritage.
The Foundation’s activities are relatively assigned to the according departments: research and valorization, museums, historical archives, library, photographic archives, technical services, publications, administrative and accounts department. PIOP's central services employ 34 staff members, all of them highly skilled and specialized in cultural management, while a further 24 belong to the Museums Network across Greece.
The Research and Valorisation Department conducts research programmes and organizes scientific events for the inventorying, safeguarding, promotion and enhancement of traditional craftsmanship and technology. The department also organizes working meetings, addressing issues of traditional craftsmanship, aiming to record and inventory the history of basic Greek products.
The Museums Department is in charge of the creation and management of the Museums Network, as well as of the supervision of each museum-related activity, such as public outreach events, temporary exhibitions, educational programmes, museum publications, etc. To the present, the Museums Network comprises seven museums, where special effort is put in implementing innovative museological methods when exhibiting intangible heritage. The creation of the Museums has been financed by E.U. Programmes (European funding and national funds) and by the Piraeus Bank Group, and their functioning is financed by the Piraeus Bank.
PIOP publications include 130 titles, organized in the following series: - Monographs (results of the conducted research programmes), Translations (classic handbooks on industrial archaeology and the history of craftsmanship), Reprints (rare old Greek publications on the history of the Greek economy and industry), Conference Proceedings (proceedings of workshops organized by the Foundation), Cultural Guides (museums guides, etc), Industrial Heritage Records (records and plans made of domestic manufacturing units) and Periodicals (dedicated to the promoting of traditional craftsmanship and technology).
The Historical Archives Department gathers and organises the historical archival material of the Piraeus Bank Group as well as the archival material of bodies and individuals directly connected with the business activities of the banks and companies of the Group, and makes it available for research.
The PIOP Library is divided into two sections: a) the Special Library of the Historical Archives' Department. Its collection totalizes approximately 15,000 Greek and foreign titles and b) the Central Library, which has around 5,000 books and periodicals; its reserves are constantly expanded, with an emphasis on topics relating to: the history of technology, museology, folklore and material culture, ethnology and anthropology, and economic history, as well as new technologies concerning research on culture.
The Photographic Archives manage the photographic/archival material produced and used by the research programmes, museums and exhibitions, publishing activities and scientific events. It comprises a variety of media, while its thematic sections cover subjects that are in general related to Greece's traditional craftsmanship and technology: sericulture, olive cultivation, architecture, hydraulic installations, medicinal plants, tanning, basketry, metalworking are some of the subjects on which rich photographic material is available.
The PIOP’s Museums Network is created in the Greek provinces, in order to promote and safeguard traditional craftsmanship in situ. Within the scope of empowering local communities by supporting sustainable development, PIOP implements a model collaboration scheme between public and private sectors. Hence, the museums created actually belong to the local authorities (mostly municipalities, prefectures, etc), whilst PIOP is responsible for their creation and operation. It is for the implementation of this management model that PIOP has been awarded the Europa Nostra 2012 Award on category 3 - Dedicated Services.
Nevertheless, community involvement is established in earlier phases of PIOP’s work: during research precedent to museum planning, through the recording of oral history and testimonies; during the preparation of permanent exhibitions, by constant consultation on the creation and documentation of collections; during exhibition setting-up, when local know-how is indispensable for the accurate and vivid recreation of traditional craftsmanship. And finally, when the museum is finally open, local practitioners and bearers of intangible heritage are eager to involve and participate in public outreach events –often organized by the local communities themselves-, in the museums premises.
On the other hand, in the framework of PIOP’s educational and public outreach policy, non-formal education activity is undertaken. Educational material regarding traditional craftsmanship is published and widely distributed, targeting not only to schools, but to families, as well. Furthermore, hands-on events are commonly organized, giving us the opportunity to involve youth in the safeguarding and promotion of traditional heritage, and, most important, to urge teachers to integrate intangible everyday life practices in the school curriculum.
Last, these efforts are scientifically supported by fostering vocational training activities (seminars, workshops, etc) targeted to teachers, scientists and/or the broader public, whilst PIOP’s personnel is often invited to teach about the measures and policies it implements for the safeguarding of traditional craftsmanship. In this framework, PIOP is often invited to participate in national and/or international joint-collaboration projects.
PIOP’s publications are freely distributed to school and university libraries. Due to its specialized publishing policy, PIOP has created several books of reference, which are integrated in the university curriculum.