Title : Culture & Heritage for Social and Economic Development

Country : Albania

Thematic Window : Culture and Development

Participating UN organisations : UNESCO, UNDP

Signing partners : Ministry of Tourism, Culture, Youth and Sports; Ministry of Foreign Affairs

Source of funds : Spanish MDG Achievement Fund


Designed to strengthen the capacities of Albania in the fields of culture and development and to articulate Albania’s cultural identity and heritage to the promotion of the country’s image abroad. 

Achieving the goal will represent an important contribution to Albania’s national priority of accession to the European Union. Interventions will include provision of policy support, improvement of capacities in the field of the protection, promotion and management of cultural assets, safeguarding of the most valuable cultural heritage monuments and sites, and strengthening the cultural industries sector for socio-economic development and achievement of the MDGs.

Millenium Development Goals addressed

  • Goal 0: Millennium Declaration: an enabling environment (human rights, democracy and good governance)
  • Goal 1: Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
  • Goal 7: Ensure environmental sustainability
  • Goal 8: Develop a global partnership for development


include : Archaeological Parks, Architectural Competition, Arts and Crafts, Cultural Diplomacy, Historical Buildings, and National History Museum.


Project details

Total Budget in USD : $ 3,260,000 | UNESCO Budget as UN Participating Organization (amount broken down) : $ 1,393,150 | Started : August 2008 | End date : December 2011 | Geographic focus : Albania | Status : Closed


24 July 2008 : Official Signing Ceremony in Tirana | 13 August 2008 : Official Joint Programme start date | 11 December 2008 : National Professional Officer (NPO) in Tirana, Zhulieta Harasani, joins UNESCO | 06 July 2009: 6-mo extension requested and approved | 3 June 2010 : final decision from the Albanian Government on National History Museum (NHM) to renovate the Ethnographic Pavilion  | 11 September 2010 : inauguration of National Film Archives (NFA) premises | end of March 2011: Training of 10 archaeological park managers in Rome, Italy, on the best practices of Archaeological Park Management | April 2011: “Island of Peace” video premiered | June 2011: Mid-term evaluation | 6 Dec 2011: Inauguration of Museum at Apollonia Archaeological Park and closing of the JP

Main achievements

  • A study on fiscal mechanisms for cultural heritage and revenue management completed to feed into the national fiscal policy recommendations.
  • A tour guide training course formally approved by line ministries and Tirana University to equip future managers of Albania’s' cultural heritage.
  • An International Advisory Board of the National History Museum (NHM) established to improve and maximise visitors’ experience.
  • National Law on Intangible Heritage has been updated to international standards;
  • The NHM Conference Room has been refurbished and re-equipped to function as a revenue-stream generator;
  • The Ethnographic pavilion at the NHM is being enhanced;
  • Museum at Apollonia Archaeological park was rehabilitated and reopened after being closed for 15 years;
  • Risk mitigation plans for Antigonea and Apollonia Archaeological parks have been elaborated;
  • Map-guides have been created for Antigonea and Apollonia Archaeological parks and the UNESCO World Heritage cities of Gjirokastra and Berat;
  • Visitor information and facilities have been improved with the completion of the cultural heritage signage project in the historic centre of Gjirokastra;
  • A MA-level program was established on Cultural Resources Management;
  • The capacity of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the field of cultural diplomacy has been enhanced to help increase awareness of Albania internationally.

Map disclaimer

The boundaries and names shown and the designations used on maps do not imply official endorsement or acceptance by the United Nations.

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