Decision of the Bureau: 17.COM 5.BUR 3.2

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 LHE/22/17.COM 5.BUR/3 as well as International Assistance request no. 02007 submitted by Kyrgyzstan,
  3. Takes note that Kyrgyzstan has requested International Assistance for the project entitled Digital journey to intangible cultural heritage of Kyrgyzstan:

This thirty-month project is proposed as a second phase of the project on Safeguarding Practices and Rare Rituals Related to Sacred Sites in Kyrgyzstan, implemented in 2018–2020 with the support of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund. Initiated by community leaders of the pilgrimage practices, the project’s overall objective is to develop a website about ICH elements, with audiovisual materials and comprehensive information about the 2003 Convention, ICH communities, active stakeholders and safeguarding activities. The idea for the development of a digital platform was proposed by the communities concerned to mitigate the regulatory, educational and ideological risks to pilgrimage practices identified during the previous project. The proposed website will address: (a) the lack of knowledge, information, awareness and educational materials on ICH; (b) the underrepresentation of the cultural heritage of ethnic minorities living in Kyrgyzstan; and (c) the need to modernize the mechanism for registering living heritage expressions of the State’s National Inventory. The project is expected to facilitate the transmission of ICH to younger generations, foster a sense of recognition, inclusion and belonging of Dungan and Uyghur ethnic groups, promote social cohesion, mutual respect and understanding between different ethnic groups, and strengthen partnerships among ICH stakeholders, including communities, State structures and the non-governmental organizations (NGOs).

  1. Further takes note that this assistance aims to support a project implemented at the national level, in accordance with Article 20 (c) of the Convention, and that it takes the form of the provision of a grant, pursuant to Article 21 (g) of the Convention;
  2. Also takes note that Kyrgyzstan has requested assistance in the amount of US$99,963 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the implementation of this project;
  3. Decides that, from the information provided in file no. 02007, 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: The project was conceived at the initiative of the communities concerned. Community members and practitioners are the main experts and partners of the implementing agency. The project emphasizes the central and active role of the communities throughout its implementation, from planning to evaluation, monitoring and follow-up.

Criterion A.2: The budget is well thought out and structured to support the different components of the project. The overall amount of assistance requested seems appropriate with regard to the objectives and scope of the project.

Criterion A.3: The proposed activities are coherent and well-planned in terms of the objectives and expected results of the project. The activities plan is structured around two main components: (a) the digitalization of previous intangible cultural heritage inventories into an interactive multimedia digital platform; and (b) elaborating the first community-based inventory of the Dungan and Uyghur ethnic groups. Moreover, the sequence of the proposed activities is logical, and the proposed timeframe is consistent with achieving the expected results of the project.

Criterion A.4: The project results are expected to last beyond the end of the project. The digital platform will be integrated into the State’s database, the regional museums and the curricula of the formal education system. The Aigine Cultural Research Center, the National Commission of Kyrgyzstan and the Ministry of Culture, Information, Sports and Youth Policy of the Kyrgyz Republic will take joint responsibility for ensuring technical and administrative support, as well as the viability and sustainability of the digital platform upon completion of the project.

Criterion A.5: The submitting State Party will contribute 15 per cent and other partners will contribute a further 17 per cent of the total amount of the project budget (US$145,995). Consequently, International Assistance is requested from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the remaining 68 per cent of the total amount of the project budget.

Criterion A.6: The project emphasizes building the capacity of the communities to strengthen the practice of the intangible cultural heritage elements identified in the proposal. The interactive multimedia digital platform will build the capacity of NGOs and communities working in the Kyrgyz intangible cultural heritage field and raise their awareness of the living heritage of Dungans and Uyghurs. The platform will initiate and encourage exchanges among communities, groups and individuals.

Criterion A.7: Kyrgyzstan has benefitted from International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for one completed project entitled ‘Safeguarding of practices and rare rituals related to sacred sites in Kyrgyzstan: preparation of an inventory and safeguarding measures’ (file no. 01423, 2018-2020, US$99,950).

Paragraph 10(a): The project is local in scope and aims to enhance cooperation among local cultural organizations and museums, among others.

Paragraph 10(b): The project is expected to contribute to safeguarding the living heritage of other ethnic groups in Kyrgyzstan.

  1. Approves the International Assistance request from Kyrgyzstan for the project entitled Digital journey to intangible cultural heritage of Kyrgyzstan and grants the amount of US$99,963 to the State Party for this purpose;
  2. Requests that the Secretariat reach an agreement with the requesting State Party on the technical details of the assistance, paying particular attention to ensuring that the budget and work plan of the activities to be covered by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund are provided in a detailed manner to justify the expenditures;
  3. Invites the State Party to use Form ICH-04-Report to report on the use of the assistance granted.