Culture unit - Team

Edouard Planche

Head of unit


Edouard Planche holds a master’s degree in public international law and art history from Aix-Marseille (France) and Exeter (UK) Universities.  Specialized in legal protection of cultural heritage, he started his career as legal advisor and course assistant at the International Development Law Organization (IDLO, Rome, Italy), before joining UNESCO in 1998. In 2008, he took part in the Public International Law Courses of the Hague Academy of International Law and was invited in 2011 by the US Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs to participate in the International Visitors Leadership Program (IVLP).

In his functions at UNESCO’s Sector for Culture, Edouard focused on the preparation and implementation of several treaties dedicated to the protection of cultural heritage in its various dimensions (tangible and intangible, movable and immovable) and contexts (peace and crisis situations) such as the 1954 The Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, the 1970 Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property, the 2001 Convention on the Protection of Underwater Cultural Heritage, the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage and the 2005 on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.  

From 2008 to 2018, Edouard was in charge of the programme of fight against illicit traffic of cultural objects (1970 Convention and Intergovernmental Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property to its Countries of Origin or its Restitution in case of Illicit Appropriation - ICPRCP).
Contact : e.planche(at)
Tel. + 39 041 260 15 58

Matteo Rosati

Programme Officer

© UNESCO/L. de Stefani

Matteo Rosati joined the Regional Bureau in 2005. He is assigned to the Culture unit and collaborates on issues ranging from the protection, safeguarding and management of cultural heritage, to the diversity of cultural expressions and the enhancement of culture for development aiming to reinforce the cooperation with and between the Member States in South-East Europe.

Matteo holds a Master’s Degree, with honours, in Communication Sciences and International Relations.  He participated in the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN/DESA) Fellowship Programme in 2001. Previous work experiences in international relations and development cooperation include assignments with the Delegation of the European Commission at the International Organizations in Vienna (2000), the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs – Local Technical Unit for Development Cooperation in Bosnia and Herzegovina (2001-2003), the World Bank (2004), and the International Management Group (2005).
Contact: m.rosati(at)
Tel. + 39 041 260 15 35

Laura de Stefani

Programme Assistant

© UNESCO/L. de Stefani

Laura De Stefani joined the Regional Bureau in 2004. She is responsible for providing support to the implementation and follow-up of all activities related to the Culture unit, including the organization of meetings and conferences, the management of contracts, travel arrangements and maintenance of files.  She also contributes to the implementation of the UNESCO-International Private Committees Joint Programme for the Safeguarding of Venice.

Laura graduated from the University of Udine in Conservation of Cultural Heritage.

Contact: l.destefani(at)
Tel. + 39 041 260 15 36

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