- Takes note that Mongolia has requested international assistance for the project entitled Safeguarding and revitalizing the Mongolian traditional epic, described as follows:
The Mongolian traditional epic, or Tuuli, constitutes a living oral encyclopaedia of Mongolian histories, myths, legends and folk songs, and has been inscribed on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding. Epics are learnt by rote and transmitted from fathers to sons within kinship circles. Singers are renowned for their remarkable memory, imagination and commitment. They traditionally perform during events such as State affairs, weddings, the Naadam festival, a child’s first haircut, hunting expeditions and worship of sacred sites. Mongolian epic performers endeavour to transmit their knowledge to the younger generation, but changing socio-economic conditions and the proliferation of mass entertainment media have placed the epic at severe risk. International assistance is requested to allow the Centre for Cultural Heritage of the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture, together with the Association of Mongol Tuuli, to implement a safeguarding plan that emphasizes training young performers to sustain intergenerational transmission; raising awareness among the general public; promoting and enhancing the skills of performers and enriching their repertoire; and creating a socio-economic and legal framework for safeguarding the element. The plan aims to revitalize and safeguard the epic and ensure its viability through training courses, exhibitions, festivals, seminars, documentary and training videos, guidebooks, and home-tutoring and training centres.
- Decides that, from the information provided in File 00549, Safeguarding and revitalizing the Mongolian traditional epic responds as follows to the criteria for international assistance in Paragraph 12 of the Operational Directives and to the additional considerations in Paragraph 10:
A.1 The project will be implemented by central governmental institutions together with regional and non-governmental organizations; and relies upon the full involvement of current bearers; the participation of local and regional stakeholders will enable involvement of other community members whose knowledge of local situations and traditions can be fully used;
A.2 The budget breakdown is realistic and the largest amounts are dedicated to safeguarding activities; the financial resources are divided among short-term and long-term activities and activities with lasting results, and the amount requested is appropriate; however, there are discrepancies that need to be resolved between the budget, timetable and proposed activities;
A.3 The character and content of the activities are well conceived; however, the request needs to demonstrate greater coherence between the objectives and the proposed activities, and ensure that this is fully reflected in the budget and timetable;
A.4 Lasting results can be expected from a well-working system of training of new bearers, based upon a sound methodology, and enhanced awareness of traditional epic in Mongolian society can be promoted by publication and documentation; the activity may also attract potential bearers from the younger generations, and the creation of a national safeguarding system should encourage sustainability of this cultural element;
A.5 The budget clearly distinguishes the amount requested from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund and that to be contributed by the State Party; although its cash contribution is relatively low, the State is encouraged to take into account the expected in-kind contributions from Government institutions and officials when revising the request;
A.6 The project involves strengthening the skills of bearers and increasing their numbers through formulating a training system for the element’s transmission; it further aims to strengthen the capacities of cultural officers involved in identification and registration of epic performers;
A.7 The submitting State received financial assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund in 2008-2009 for the elaboration of two nominations to the Urgent Safeguarding List for Mongolian traditional heroic epic, and for Mongolian folk dance, Bii biyeleg, and in 2009-2011 for the elaboration of the inventories of the Representative List and the Urgent Safeguarding List in Mongolia; Mongolia provided the work stipulated by the terms of reference of the respective contracts and these contracts were duly completed in conformity with UNESCO regulations;
10(a) The scope of the project is national, but the submitting State should be encouraged to envisage broader partnerships and to consider expanding the project at the regional level;
10(b) The submitting State has not clearly identified possible multiplier effects, except for the general stimulus to greater national, local and institutional interest in the safeguarding of the Mongolian epic and other intangible cultural heritage.
- Decides not to approve international assistance in the amount of US$107,400 for the project Safeguarding and revitalizing the Mongolian traditional epic at this time;
- Invites the State Party to submit a revised request with a more detailed workplan and budget reflecting a clearer correspondence between the objectives and the planned activities, their timetable and the amounts required for each activity, preferably by the end of February 2012;
- Further invites the State Party to describe more clearly its in-kind contribution, in particular regarding the costs to guarantee the monitoring of the project, and to address its sustainability beyond the activities to be financed by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund;
- Requests the Secretariat to work with the submitting State Party in its revision of the request;
- Delegates to the Bureau of the Committee the authority to approve a revised request for international assistance in an amount not to exceed US$107,400, on condition that the State Party submits a revised request responding to the concerns laid out above.