Decision of the Bureau: 13.COM 1.BUR 3.6

The Bureau,

  1. Recalling Article 23 of the Convention as well as Chapter I.4 of the Operational Directives relating to the eligibility and criteria of International Assistance requests,
  2. Having examined Document ITH/18/13.COM 1.BUR/3 as well as International Assistance request no. 01431 submitted by Senegal,
  3. Takes note that Senegal has requested International Assistance for the project entitled Strengthening national capacities in the field of intangible cultural heritage safeguarding in Senegal:

The proposed eighteen-month project, to be jointly implemented by the Directorate for Cultural Heritage of the Ministry of Culture and the UNESCO Dakar Office, is aimed at strengthening national capacities for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage in Senegal by building on technical capacities and implementing concrete safeguarding measures. The proposed project responds to the issues identified in a needs assessment exercise conducted from 2016 until 2017, as well as an analysis carried out by the Directorate for Cultural Heritage as part of an ongoing national inventory exercise. Though Senegal has already benefited from previous living heritage safeguarding experiences, an insufficiently systematic approach to the process, as well as problems with methodology and harmonisation and the absence of a strategic action plan and integrated vision have been identified. To respond to this situation, the proposed project would provide technical assistance and training to strengthen the capacities of the relevant stakeholders, through a series of activities organized with the active participation of local community organizations, universities and schools. Specifically, the project aims to: support the ongoing national inventory exercise through the development of a national inventorying strategy and intangible cultural heritage safeguarding plans; develop local expertise through the training of three national experts; and pilot a new approach to safeguarding living heritage involving the education system (schools).

  1. Further takes note that:
  1. this assistance is to support a project implemented at the national level, in accordance with Article 20 (c) of the Convention,
  2. this is one of the first cases, on an experimental basis, in which a State Party has requested International Assistance that will partly take the form of services from the Secretariat to the State, and
  3. the assistance therefore takes the form of the provision of a grant and of services from UNESCO (the provision of experts, the training of the necessary staff, the elaboration of standard-setting measures and the supply of equipment), pursuant to Article 21(b), (c), (d), (f) and (g) of the Convention;
  1. Also takes note that an amount of US$99,889 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund is being requested for the implementation of this project and that Senegal wishes the UNESCO Dakar Office to coordinate and monitor its implementation;
  2. Understands that the UNESCO Dakar Office will be responsible for the coordination and monitoring of project activities, the provision of international expertise and the establishment of the related contracts (47 per cent of the requested amount), while the requesting State will be responsible for the logistical organization of capacity-building activities such as the selection of participants and their participation in workshops, the provision of national experts and the purchase of equipment (53 per cent of the requested amount), as described in the request;
  3. Decides that, from the information provided in file no. 01431, the request responds as follows to the criteria for granting International Assistance given in paragraphs 10 and 12 of the Operational Directives:
Criterion A.1: While the request was initiated by the Directorate of Cultural Heritage at the Ministry of Culture as part of its national efforts to enhance the implementation of the Convention in Senegal, the information provided in the request demonstrates that the proposed activities are based on a needs assessment carried out at the community level in 2016-2017 and that community members will participate actively in the implementation of most of its activities, including the final restitution activities that will evaluate the results of the project at the community level; through their participation in the capacity-building activities, the communities will be increasingly actively involved so that they can directly contribute and eventually lead the preparation and implementation of safeguarding plans;

Criterion A.2: Although some of the budgetary lines under the communication and safeguarding plan implementation components of the project could be more detailed, the amount of assistance requested seems appropriate with regard to the objectives and scope of the project;

Criterion A.3: The request is clearly structured and includes a series of activities that are well-conceived and presented in a logical sequence, from training workshops on the core principles of the Convention and community-based inventorying, to pilot inventorying exercises, specific training for at least three national experts, the preparation and implementation of safeguarding plans and the final restitution workshops at both community and national levels; the expected results seem to be achievable within the proposed project duration and timetable;

Criterion A.4: The development and implementation of safeguarding plans resulting from the pilot inventorying activity as well as the increased capacities of experts and communities in the field of intangible cultural heritage safeguarding at the national and local levels should ensure that the project yields lasting results, contributing to the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage beyond the implementation of the project; progress in the implementation of the activities will be regularly monitored and an external evaluation is planned for the end of the project to assess the key results achieved and their sustainability;

Criterion A.5: The requesting State will share 17 per cent of the overall budget of the project for which International Assistance is requested from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund;

Criterion A.6: The project mainly aims to reinforce capacities in the field of intangible cultural heritage at the community and institutional levels: at the community level, community members will be trained to inventory their living heritage and contribute to the preparation of safeguarding plans, while at the institutional level, the project will strengthen the capacities of the Ministry of Culture and regional cultural centres with specific training planned for at least three experts who will become focal points for the Convention;

Criterion A.7: Senegal has benefitted from International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the project entitled ‘Inventory of traditional music in Senegal’ (File no. 00553, 2013-2014, US$80,789), carried out by the Cultural Heritage Department of the Ministry of Culture and Francophonie in cooperation with the Senegalese National Commission for UNESCO. The work stipulated by the contract related to this project was carried out in compliance with UNESCO’s regulations;

Paragraph 10(a): The project is national in scope and involves a wide range of national and local implementing partners, including regional cultural centres, the Gaston Berger University and communities associated with the elements of intangible cultural heritage inventoried;

Paragraph 10(b): The project is expected to trigger additional contributions from the State Party’s national budget for the implementation of a national strategy for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage in Senegal, including for the implementation of safeguarding plans at both the national and local levels; pilot activities focusing on the integration of intangible cultural heritage into the educational sector may also open up new avenues for resource mobilization.

  1. Approves the International Assistance request from Senegal for the project entitled Strengthening national capacities in the field of intangible cultural heritage safeguarding in Senegal and grants the amount of US$99,889 for the implementation of this project according to the modality described in paragraph 5 and 6;
  2. Requests that the Secretariat reach an agreement with the requesting State Party on the budget of the activities to be covered by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund, so as to ensure that the planned budgetary expenses are detailed and specific enough to provide sufficient justification of the expenditures;
  3. Invites the State Party to use Form ICH-04-Report when reporting on the implementation of the project, which shall form the basis of an overall report to be prepared by the UNESCO Dakar Office;
  4. Encourages the Secretariat, in light of this experience with the provision of services carried out on an experimental basis, to draw lessons from the implementation of this project, particularly with regard to administrative issues.