Decision of the Bureau: 10.COM 2.BUR 4

The Committee,

  1. Recalling Chapter V of the Convention and Chapter I of the Operational Directives,
  2. Having examined document ITH/15/10.COM 2.BUR/4 as well as the International Assistance request 00978,
  3. Further recalling Document ITH/14/9.COM 9.c, as well as Decision 9.COMc.2,
  4. Takes note that Sudan has submitted a revised International Assistance request for the Documentation and inventory of intangible cultural heritage in the Republic of Sudan (a pilot project in Kordufan and Blue Nile regions):

The project aims to conduct a pilot inventory of the intangible cultural heritage of Kordofan and Blue Nile regions through documentation and inventorying, and thereby to contribute to a larger inventory in Sudan. At present, no such inventory exists, although there are numerous studies, collections and bibliographies, as well as thousands of photos and audiovisual recordings. This project proposes to develop a national strategy and operational structure for documentation and inventorying and would include preliminary training workshops focused on concepts and methods, fieldwork and data collection. The project would review existing research, establish a database and website, purchase equipment for use by five specially trained inventory teams, conduct fieldwork to document expressions, classify the data collected and elaborate lists of each region’s heritage. The project intends to build the capacity of all stakeholders involved in the project and raise awareness of local communities on the importance of their intangible cultural heritage and enable them to participate in its documentation and inventorying. The results of the inventory would be disseminated through publications and the internet;

  1. Further takes note that this assistance concerns support for a project carried out at national level aimed at the safeguarding of the intangible cultural heritage in accordance with Article 20 of the Convention, and that it takes the form of the granting of a donation in line with Article 21 (g) of the Convention;
  2. Also takes note that Sudan requested an allocation of US$174,480 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the implementation of the project;
  3. Considers that, from the information provided in the revised file 00978, the request responds as follows to the criteria for granting International Assistance in paragraph 10 and 12 of the Operational Directives:
Criterion A.1: The request adequately demonstrates the participation of local communities in the two regions for the elaboration of the request, as a group of representatives have been identified through consultations in each of the five States covering the two regions; for the implementation, the profile of stakeholders have been clearly identified and their involvement is foreseen in each activity of the project.

Criterion A.2: The amount of assistance requested for the proposed activities, which indicates key actions to be carried out and their links with the expected results, is deemed appropriate.

Criterion A.3: The request is well structured and describes a series of activities in adequate detail, accompanied by a detailed budget, even though there remain a number of minor technical inconsistencies between planned activities and the budget and timetable provided. The duration of 22 months (and not 24 months as erroneously indicated in some sections of the form) is realistic for carrying out all the planned activities. Furthermore, the request takes full cognizance of the fact that the country, including the project areas, continues to suffer from recurrent internal conflicts and tensions and as such, the emphasis placed on the role that inventorying of elements of intangible cultural heritage can play in building peace and social cohesion is considered particularly pertinent.

Criterion A.4: The planned establishment of a national framework strategy is expected to lay a solid foundation for continuing documentation and inventorying and for contributing to safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage in Sudan after termination of the project in question. Furthermore, the involvement of a diverse range of partners in implementation of the project is expected to be particularly useful in continuing further capacity-building activities and educational or promotional activities aiming to increase awareness of the importance of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage at the local and national levels.

Criterion A.5: The submitting State shares the costs of the proposed activities and has committed to contribute US$21,450, which represents about 12% of the total project budget.

Criterion A.6: The main objective of the project is to build the capacities of Sudan, through the pilot activities in the Kordofan and Blue Nile regions, to identify and document the living heritage with a view to safeguarding the diversity of traditional practices, knowledge and skills present in the country. Target stakeholders include governmental institutions, policymakers, universities, NGOs and communities. The content of planned training activities indicate that these stakeholders will have the opportunity to enhance their capacity in different areas, including knowledge about the 2003 Convention, as well as the skills and methodology necessary for participating in the documentation and establishment of an inventory.

Criterion A.7: Sudan has benefited in 2009 from International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for an amount of US$12,167 to elaborate a digitization strategy for Sudan’s folklore and traditional music archives; the work stipulated by the contract related to this project was successfully carried out and, following UNESCO regulations, duly completed.

Consideration 10(b): The request indicates a potential multiplier effect in terms of future funding, particularly from the telecommunication sector. Enhanced cooperation with various national and international partners is also envisaged in favour of further technical contributions in the fields of photography, information technology and digitization.

  1. Commends the effort made by the submitting State through the revision process to align the request to the specific context of the country and in recognising the needs of the communities for safeguarding their living heritage in a conflict situation;
  2. Decides that the file responds to the recommendations of the Consultative Body and the request by the Committee in its Decision 9.COM 9.c.2;
  3. Requests the Secretariat to reach an agreement with the submitting State on technical details of the assistance, once remaining minor problems concerning the request are resolved;
  4. Encourage the submitting State, in echoing encouragement given by the Committee at its 9th session, that the capacity-building activities take place with the involvement of qualified trainers who are fully familiar with the concepts and principles of the Convention, and requests the Secretariat to support the submitting State in this regard;
  5. Invites the submitting State to use the ICH-04-Report Form to report on the use of assistance granted.