Copyright 2006 - UNESCO

Space for Heritage

Space for our young generation (Space 4 Young Generation) 

If we as adults are not taking good care of our Natural and Cultural Heritage, it is in the minds of the young generation that interest for science and awareness for conservation must be constructed.

Space to Raise Conservation Awareness among the Younger Generation

UNESCO’s ‘Open Initiative - Young Generation’ educational activity involves partners of the ‘Open Initiative’, including major space agencies, conservation authorities and research institutions, to make use of space science and technology to create awareness of conservation among children.

Within this activity, as part of the UN Decade of Education for Sustainable Development, UNESCO assists local conservation authorities to involve school children (age 12-15) from schools surrounding UNESCO World Heritage natural and cultural sites, in easy tasks of the field work required to support satellite image processing.
Local school children are brought to UNESCO sites to:

  • Observe with the support of a time series of satellite images how the site and/or its surroundings has changed since 20 years ago, 10 years ago and up to present;

  • Understand from the site manager: the cultural and biodiversity values of the site; the importance to preserve these values; and the associated threats;

  • Appreciate the link between the site’s biodiversity and the local community’s intangible heritage - including their food, handcrafts and traditional medicines;

  • Participate in simple tasks during field trips to support the satellite image assessment, such as identifying clear marks in the ground (roads crossing); and noting the description where the experts are taking GPS points, etc.;

  • Observe other satellite images that show changes occurring in key areas of their country and around the world – including major cities, lakes and forests;

  • Learn from such experience what their local community is doing with respect to a reasonable use of the associated natural resources;

  • Participate within the local community in activities associated with a sustainable use of the surrounding biodiversity.
By understanding the site, children will value it;
By valuing the site, children will take care of it;
By caring for the site, children will help people enjoying it;
By enjoying the site, people will take care of it.
The ‘Open Initiative – Young Generation’ promotes an exchange of information, beliefs and opinions between children on their local environment/culture and how to contribute to its long-term conservation. It raises awareness, pride and support from children in caring for their natural and cultural resources.

In addition, the activity facilitates inter-cultural dialogues between children around the world, by providing an excellent forum for cooperation and enhanced understanding of other cultures and other ideas and actions towards a sustainable use of the Earth’s resources.


Current partners are already involved and activities with other partners are under implementation.