What is the right scale or scope of an element?

  • 17 October 2012

© Sébastien Collet, service communication de la ville d'Alençon

What does it mean to speak of an ‘element’ of intangible cultural heritage in the 2003 Convention and its Operational Directives? What are the actual trends, categories and examples of the elements inscribed on the Lists so far? How should similar elements, within and between countries, be treated? How can an inscribed element be ‘extended’? Is it useful to speak of ‘serial elements’? What is the ‘right’ scale of an element, and for what context?

These are the questions that experts from States Parties of the Convention will have the opportunity to reflect on at the open ended intergovernmental working group to be held at UNESCO Headquarters, Paris, on 22 and 23 October 2012.

Established by the Intergovernmental Committee at its sixth session in Bali (22 to 29 November 2011), the meeting is made possible by the generous financial support of the Japanese Government, through a contribution to the Fund for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage.