National stakeholders focus on Heritage studies in Ugandan Universities

Ms. Emily DRANI, Executive Director of the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda during the national symposium on 12 November 2020 ©UNESCO

Over 100 participants joined (physically and online) the national symposium on “Heritage studies in Ugandan Universities – What progress? What relevance?” on 12 November 2020 organized by the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda (CCFU). The symposium follows a UNESCO study carried out by CCFU in 2019 mapping universities in the Eastern Africa region offering degree programmes in intangible cultural heritage studies in the framework of the UNESCO 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Participants in the symposium included cultural heritage specialists, university representatives, representatives from UNESCO, concerned ministries and government agencies, youth representatives, and resource persons from the cultural and education sectors in  Uganda.

The symposium was opened by Associate Professor Fabian Nabugoomu, Deputy Vice Chancellor of Finance and Administration at the University of Kyambogo, and included updates on the development of Bachelor of Heritage Studies Programmes at Kabale University, Islamic University in Uganda, Uganda Martyrs University, and Kyambogo University—four universities who have collaborated since 2017 on the UNESCO initiative “Promoting intangible cultural heritage education in higher institutions of learning in Uganda,” coordinated by CCFU.

The project reflects a situation where Ugandan students - our future policy makers, technocrats and political leaders - often do not have an opportunity to learn about and appreciate cultural heritage for its intrinsic value, as a source of social cohesion, or as a source of employment through cultural tourism, the arts and creative industries, and other development prescriptions,
Ms. Emily Drani, Executive Director of the Cross-Cultural Foundation of Uganda
We hope this symposium will encourage other universities in Uganda and the Eastern Africa region to undertake similar initiatives to strengthen ties between culture and education for sustainable development,
Ms. Ann Therese-Ndong-Jatta, Director and Representative of the UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern

Statement from UNESCO during the symposium


Documentary on the UNESCO project



For more information on intangible cultural heritage, please see:

What is intangible cultural heritage?

UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage Convention