How can universities integrate intangible cultural heritage in their programmes? How we get young people interested in this topic? These were some of the questions addressed at a roundtable organized on 5 December, as a side event to the 12th session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage held in Jeju, Republic of Korea from 4 to 9 December.
‘It is no longer a question of whether intangible cultural heritage should be integrated in university programmes, but rather how’, stated Jyoti Hosagrahar, Director of the Division of Creativity at UNESCO, when addressing States Parties, NGOs, and experts who participated in the event. Universities have a key role to play in training administrators who will work in the area of heritage.
‘In most cases, intangible heritage is not treated as a separate subject’, analyzed Kwan Huh, Director General of the International Information and Networking Centre for Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific Region under the auspices of UNESCO (ICHCAP). More frequently, we see it approached from different perspectives and across different disciplines such as anthropology, sociology and history.
Another challenge is the lack of interest from students. ‘We need to show young people that they are connected to intangible heritage, which they are often practicing without even realizing it. And, we need to make them understand that they have a key role to play in its transmission’, Annie Tohme Tabet, anthropologist and professor at Saint Joseph University of Beirut, Lebanon.
Despite the obstacles, the participants emphasized that nonetheless intangible heritage has a growing importance at universities. A study conducted by the UNESCO Office in Bangkok, Thailand in 2017 in Asia-Pacific received responses from 37 institutions in 18 countries. The survey shows that many of the disciplines related to tangible heritage (architecture, museology, etc.) are now including intangible heritage.
‘Even if we are still in the early stages in Uganda, we feel that the younger generation is starting to understand its importance. We need to show a strong link between intangible heritage and development’, insisted Barbra Babweteera, Deputy Director, Cross Cultural Foundation of Uganda.
‘We are interested in understanding the relationship between intangible cultural heritage and education in a creative and dynamic way. What is still missing is the cooperation and networking between universities’, raised Christoph Wulf, professor of anthropology and philosophy of education at the Free University of Berlin, Germany.
Jeju (Republic of Korea)
Jeju Island (Republic of Korea)
The UNESCO Office in Montevideo held a regional meeting on Cooperation mechanisms for intangible heritage and higher education in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 21 to 22 November, 2017. The meeting was held in cooperation with FLACSO (Latin American Social Sciences Institute), CRESPIAL (Regional Center for the Safeguarding of the ICH of Latin America) and IESALC (International Institute for Higher Education in Latin America and the Caribbean) and the UNESCO Office in Havana, Regional Office for Culture for Latin America and the Caribbean.
Forty-three academics, managers and decision makers from thirty universities took part in the event coming from eleven countries across the region: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Mexico, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela.
The meeting promoted exchange and reflection on intangible heritage and higher education, with a particular focus on tertiary level cultural management programmes. Participants discussed the realities, needs, experiences, specificities, and expectations of universities in relation to the teaching of intangible heritage as an academic discipline.
This event benefited from financial support from the Fund for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.
Photos from the event can be viewed on flickr.
Buenos Aires (Argentina)
The three countries of North Africa, Morocco, Mauritania and Tunisia, benefited from a program to safeguard the intangible cultural heritage through the strengthening of national capacities implemented by the UNESCO Office in Rabat between 2013 and 2015 thanks to funding from Norway. This program resulted in three workshops organized in each of the countries concerned on: (i) the implementation of the Intangible Cultural Heritage Convention (IMP); (ii) Participatory Inventory with Communities (INV); and (iii) the preparation of nominations for inclusion in the Convention Lists (NOM).
The second phase of this program is implemented by UNESCO in the three countries with funding from Catalonia between 2017 and 2018. It intends to deepen the capacity building on other themes but also support the policy of Tunisia in this domain. These are: (i) a workshop in each of the three countries on the development of safeguarding plans; (ii) a workshop in each of the three countries on the preparation of international assistance requests; and (iii) support to Tunisia for the development of a national strategy for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage.
UNESCO Multisectoral Office, Abuja in collaboration with the Ministry of Information and Culture organizes the final stakeholders’ meeting leading to the end of the implementation process of the project “Safeguarding the intangible cultural heritage of Nigeria through an integrated approach”. The objective of the meeting is to share the inventory reports from the three communities involved (Bida, Calabar and Oyo), with the stakeholders. In addition, the Independent Evaluator will present findings on the project implementation with recommendations for future actions to ensure the sustainability of the results of the project.
About fifty participants from government Ministries, Agencies, Civil Society, culture related Non-Governmental Organizations would participate at the meeting. Dignitaries expected at the meeting include the Ambassador of Japan in Nigeria, Ambassador of Indonesia and the Ambassador of the Republic of Korea. Others diginataries would include representatives from some United Nations Agencies, ECOWAS and British Council.
UNESCO Headquarters (-)
The Secretariat of the Convention organizes an information and exchange session for the members of the Intergovernmental Committee on Tuesday, 3 October 2017. This meeting will take place in Room XI (Fontenoy) from 3 to 5 p.m.
The purpose of this meeting is to inform Committee members about the functioning of the Committee and its general working methods. The Secretariat wishes to inform all members of the Committee, before its twelfth session, on the provisional agenda of the twelfth session of the Committee. The Chairperson will inform the participants of the action taken by the Government of the Republic of Korea regarding its hosting of the Committee’s next session in Jeju Island, Republic of Korea (4-9 December 2017). This information meeting is also open to interested States Parties, which are not members of the Committee and States not party to the Convention.
The city of Esquipulas, Chiquimula, hosted a training workshop on participatory inventory methodology as advocated in the 2003 Convention in the framework of the project ‘Strengthening national capacities for safeguarding intangible cultural heritage in Guatemala’. Thirty participants from the Ministry of Culture and Sports, local municipalities, civil society and local communities discussed both the theoretical and practical aspects of how to carry out a community-based inventory of intangible cultural heritage. Following this one-week training, a pilot inventory activity in the eastern region of Guatemala was carried out.
Esquipulas, Chiquimula (Guatemala)
Training of trainers workshop for the European chapter of the global facilitators’ network
In the context of the global capacity-building programme for the effective implementation of the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage, the workshop intends to expand the regional chapter of the programme’s facilitators’ network and strengthen its delivery capacity to respond to capacity-building needs in European and, in particular, Eastern European countries. UNESCO is organizing the workshop thanks to the generous support of the Regional Centre for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage in South-Eastern Europe in Sofia, Bulgaria, and the funds from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund.
The training content and methodology will take into account recommendations of the recent global programme strategy meeting held in Bangkok in March 2017. The strategy meeting highlighted the need for a stronger focus on strengthening institutional capacities at national level, the development of national networks of trainers and consideration of the changing role of facilitators, which has evolved from delivering training workshops to providing advisors, acting as mediators and as resource persons concerning all matters related to the implementation of the Convention.
Accordingly, the Sofia training workshop will: 1) analyse the lessons learned to date from implementing UNESCO’s global capacity-building programme in Europe; 2) strengthen participants’ knowledge and competencies required to be a facilitator in the network; 3) provide hands-on experience using the UNESCO capacity-building curriculum, including the recently developed materials on elaborating safeguarding plans.
From April 3rd to 13th 2017, a UNESCO led ‘Community-based Inventorying Training Workshop for Strengthening National Capacities for Implementing the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in Eritrea’ was undertaken. Participants were from community members across the country, from the nine cultural groups and Director Generals or regional authorities on culture from the six administrative regions. The workshop, which was led by an international expert (Dr Lovemore Mazibuko) with support from a national expert (Dr Senait Bahta) enabled the participants to achieve the approaches and methods for inventorying ICH. After the workshop, the trainees were assigned the responsibility to train community members in the regions they represent.
Following the workshop, a work plan for fieldwork on inventorying ICH in all the nine cultural groups was drafted by the Cultural Affairs Bureau, an international expert and national expert. As per the advice of the international expert, it was appropriate to begin inventorying fieldwork with a few elements from each cultural group, rather than focus on only one group in order to allow all participants to practice the community based inventory techniques they had learned during the workshop. Two elements of ICH from each of the nine cultural groups were selected with the assistance of community members, Director Generals for Culture in each of the six zone administrative offices. The National expert formed Regional teams of at least five in a team to lead the inventorying work in each of the nine culture groups. The team formed consisted of a local language speaker, (who is the interviewer), a note taker, a sound recorder and audiovisual expert.
Anseba, Gash-Barka, Maekel, South, Northern Red sea, Southern Red Sea (Eritrea)
The 5th annual meeting of the category 2 centres active in the field of intangible cultural heritage will be held from 10 to 12 September in Shiraz, Islamic Republic of Iran. Hosted by the Iranian category 2 centre under the auspices of UNESCO, the Regional Research Centre for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage in West and Central Asia, the meeting will follow up on the four previous annual meetings.
Shiraz (Iran (Islamic Republic of))
The current report results from the needs assessment that was carried out in September-December 2017 on the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The assessment was guided by the intention to explore the legislative and policy documents in the sphere of ICH in Bosnia and Herzegovina, to analyze the institutional and administrative framework for the implementation of UNESCO’s 2003 Convention, and to study the situation of awareness-raising activities, inventorying procedures, and educational and training programs on ICH issues in the country. The goal was to outline the major challenges encountered in the implementation of the 2003 Convention on the national level, to identify the main needs in the field of ICH safeguarding, and to propose recommendations for improvement, with a special attention to aspects of urgency, sustainability, and long-terms effects. The needs assessment will enable to tailor further actions within the framework of UNESCO global capacity-building strategy for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage, especially by using the opportunity to elaborate requests for international assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund, established under the 2003 Convention.
Bosnia and Herzegovina (Bosnia and Herzegovina)