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World Heritage
POLICY COMPENDIUM

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6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Article 5

"[The World Heritage Convention calls upon States Parties] to adopt a general policy which aims to give the cultural and natural heritage a function in the life of the community (…)."

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

3. “In view of the increasing challenges to our shared heritage, we will:

c) (…) seek to ensure an appropriate and equitable balance between conservation, sustainability and development, so that World Heritage properties can be protected through appropriate activities contributing to the social and economic development and the quality of life of our communities;

f) (…) seek to ensure the active involvement of our local communities at all levels in the identification, protection and management of our World Heritage properties”.

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  WHC-02/CONF.202/5 The Budapest Declaration on World Heritage

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

17. “(…) Inclusive social development is at the heart of the implementation of the (…) Convention. States Parties should further recognise that full inclusion, respect and equity of all stakeholders, including local and concerned communities and indigenous peoples, together with a commitment to gender equality, are a fundamental premise for inclusive social development (…)”.

19. “World Heritage properties have the potential to enhance quality of life and wellbeing of all stakeholders, and in particular local communities (…)”.

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  Policy for the integration of a sustainable development perspective into the processes of the World Heritage Convention (WHC-15/20.GA/INF.13)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 12

“States Parties to the Convention are encouraged to adopt a human-rights based approach, and ensure gender-balanced participation of a wide variety of stakeholders and rights-holders, including site managers, local and regional governments, local communities, indigenous peoples, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and other interested parties and partners in the identification, nomination, management and protection processes of World Heritage properties.”
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
6.2 - Human rights and rights-based approach
6.3 - Gender equality
6.4 - Indigenous peoples
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 39

“A partnership approach, underpinned by inclusive, transparent and accountable decision-making, to nomination, management and monitoring provides a significant contribution to the protection of World Heritage properties and the implementation of the Convention.”

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 40

“Partners in the protection and conservation of World Heritage can be those individuals and other stakeholders, especially local communities, indigenous peoples, governmental, non-governmental and private organizations and owners who have an interest and involvement in the conservation and management of a World Heritage property.”
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 64

“States Parties are encouraged to prepare their Tentative Lists with the full, effective and gender-balanced participation of a wide variety of stakeholders and rights-holders, including site managers, local and regional governments, local communities, indigenous peoples, NGOs and other interested parties and partners. In the case of sites affecting the lands, territories or resources of indigenous peoples, States Parties shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free, prior and informed consent before including the sites on their Tentative List.”

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
6.2 - Human rights and rights-based approach
6.3 - Gender equality
6.4 - Indigenous peoples
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 117

“States Parties are responsible for implementing effective management activities for a World Heritage property. States Parties should do so in close collaboration with property managers, the agency with management authority and other partners, local communities and indigenous peoples, rights-holders and stakeholders in property management, by developing, when appropriate, equitable governance arrangements, collaborative management systems and redress mechanisms.”
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 123

“Effective and inclusive participation in the nomination process of local communities, indigenous peoples, governmental, non-governmental and private organizations and other stakeholders is essential to enable them to have a shared responsibility with the State Party in the maintenance of the property. States Parties are encouraged to prepare nominations with the widest possible participation of stakeholders and shall demonstrate, as appropriate, that the free, prior and informed consent of indigenous peoples has been obtained, through, inter alia, making the nominations publicly available in appropriate languages and public consultations and hearings.”

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
6.4 - Indigenous peoples
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

[The General Assembly adopted the Vision and Action Plan by Resolution 18 GA 11; the paragraph refers to the report]

8. “The World Heritage Convention is implemented through a wide and ever-expanding network of actors. Each has an important role to play in shaping policies, driving management practices, building capacity and expanding awareness of cultural and natural heritage. (…) It is also important to ensure that local, national and international communities feel a connection to, engage with and benefit from the world’s natural and cultural heritage."
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Source:  WHC-11/18.GA/11 Future of the World Heritage Convention

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

5. "[The World Heritage Committee] decides to maintain credibility, conservation, capacity building and communication as strategic objectives in the implementation of the Convention whilst restating the different components and, recognizing the critical importance of involving indigenous, traditional and local communities in the implementation of the Convention, further decides to add ‘communities’ as a fifth strategic objective."

Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Decision:  31 COM 13A

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

15. g) “[The World Heritage Committee encourages States Parties to] establish and promote horizontal cooperation and understanding among various institutions that have an impact on cultural and natural heritage, also including governmental institutions responsible for UNESCO programmes implementation on national level, economy, finance, regional development/ planning, tourism, social welfare as well as local authorities”.
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Decision:  35 COM 12E

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

40. "[The World Heritage Committee] takes note with appreciation of the Chairperson of the 41st session of the World Heritage Committee’s initiative on structured dialogue with civil society and encourages States Parties and civil society organizations to continue exploring possibilities how civil society can further contribute to enhanced conservation of heritage on the site and national level and provide relevant input to the heritage related debate at the global level."
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Decision:  41 COM 7

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

5. "[The World Heritage Committee] affirms the value of strengthening and improving dialogue between the Advisory Bodies and the States Parties."
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Decision:  42 COM 5B

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

13. "[The World Heritage Committee] welcomes the continued interest of civil society organizations in the Convention, acknowledging the important contribution that can be made to the promotion and conservation of heritage on the ground and to capacity-building."
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
Decision:  42 COM 7

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Synthesis based on relevant Committee decisions

The World Heritage Committee requests State Parties to ensure that any relocation is carried out with the consent of the population concerned, and also requests to engage with communities in case of relocation, by ensuring an evaluation of the impact of the relocation and effective consultation  processes, as well as appropriate compensation of the affected local communities (based on Case law on decisions on the State of Conservation).
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
See for examples Decisions:  39 COM 7A.10 41 COM 7B.97 43 COM 7B.39 43 COM 7B.76 43 COM 7B.6 43 COM 7B.4

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Synthesis based on relevant Committee decisions

The World Heritage Committee encourages States Parties to promote the customary governance and use of the sites, including the promotion of engagement of customary owners in decision-making processes (based on Case law on decisions on the State of Conservation).
Theme:  6.1 - Participation of local communities and other stakeholders
See for examples Decisions:  35 COM 7B.15 42 COM 7B.66 43 COM 7A.2

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

7. "(...)

i. Human Rights: The human rights embedded in the UN Charter and the range of broadly ratified human rights instruments reflect fundamental values that underpin the very possibility for dignity, peace and sustainable development. In implementing the World Heritage Convention, it is therefore essential to respect, protect and promote these environmental, social, economic, and cultural rights".

17. "The World Heritage Convention in Article 5 calls upon States Parties to “adopt a general policy which aims to give the cultural and natural heritage a function in the life of the community”. States Parties should recognise that inclusive social development is at the heart of the implementation of this provision of the Convention. States Parties should further recognise that full inclusion, respect and equity of all stakeholders, including local and concerned communities and indigenous peoples, together with a commitment to gender equality, are a fundamental premise for inclusive social development. Enhancing quality of life and well-being in and around World Heritage properties is essential, taking into account communities who might not visit or reside in or near properties but are still stakeholders. Inclusive social development must be underpinned by inclusive governance".

18. "States Parties should ensure that the conservation and management of World Heritage properties is based on recognition of cultural diversity, inclusion and equity (…)".

20. "(…) To ensure policy coherence in conserving and managing World Heritage properties, States Parties should commit to uphold, respect and contribute to the implementation of the full range of international human rights standards as a pre-requisite for effectively achieving sustainable development. To this end, States Parties should:

i. Ensure that the full cycle of World Heritage processes from nomination to management is compatible with and supportive of human rights;

ii. Adopt a rights-based approach, which promotes World Heritage properties as exemplary places for the application of the highest standards for the respect and realization of human rights;

iii. Develop, through equitable participation of concerned people, relevant standards and safeguards, guidance tools and operational mechanisms for assessment, nomination, management, evaluation and reporting processes compatible with and effective rights-based approach for both existing and potential new properties;

iv. Promote technical cooperation and capacity-building to ensure effective rights-based approaches".

Theme:  6.2 - Human rights and rights-based approach
Source:  Policy for the integration of a sustainable development perspective into the processes of the World Heritage Convention (WHC-15/20.GA/INF.13)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

23. "(...) States Parties should:

i. Ensure respect for gender equality throughout the full cycle of World Heritage processes, particularly in the preparation and content of nomination dossiers;

ii. Ensure social and economic opportunities for both women and men in and around World Heritage properties;

iii. Ensure equal and respectful consultation, full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership and representation of both women and men within activities for the conservation and management of World Heritage properties;

iv. When or where relevant, ensure that gender-rooted traditional practices within World Heritage properties, for example in relation to access or participation in management mechanisms, have received the full consent of all groups within the local communities through transparent consultation processes that fully respects gender equality."

Theme:  6.3 - Gender equality
Source:  Policy for the integration of a sustainable development perspective into the processes of the World Heritage Convention (WHC-15/20.GA/INF.13)

6 - Policies Regarding COMMUNITIES

Paragraph 15

“While fully respecting the sovereignty of the States on whose territory the cultural and natural heritage is situated, States Parties to the Convention recognize the collective interest of the international community to cooperate in the protection of this heritage. States Parties to the World Heritage Convention, have the responsibility to:

a) ensure the identification, nomination, protection, conservation, presentation, and transmission to future generations of the cultural and natural heritage found within their territory, and give help in these tasks to other States Parties that request it;

b) adopt general policies to give the heritage a function in the life of the community;

c) integrate heritage protection into comprehensive planning programmes and coordination mechanisms, giving consideration in particular to the resilience of socio-ecological systems of properties;

d) establish services for the protection, conservation and presentation of the heritage;

e) develop scientific and technical studies to identify actions that would counteract the dangers that threaten the heritage;

f) take appropriate legal, scientific, technical, administrative and financial measures to protect the heritage;

g) foster the establishment or development of national or regional centres for training in the protection, conservation and presentation of the heritage and encourage scientific research in these fields;

h) not take any deliberate measures that directly or indirectly damage their heritage or that of another State Party to the Convention;

i) submit to the World Heritage Committee an inventory of properties suitable for inscription on the World Heritage List (referred to as a Tentative List);

j) make regular contributions to the World Heritage Fund, the amount of which is determined by the General Assembly of States Parties to the Convention;

k) consider and encourage the establishment of national, public and private foundations or associations to facilitate donations for the protection of World Heritage;

l) give assistance to international fund-raising campaigns organized for the World Heritage Fund;

m) use educational and information programmes to strengthen appreciation and respect by their peoples of the cultural and natural heritage defined in Articles 1 and 2 of the Convention, and to keep the public informed of the dangers threatening this heritage;

n) provide information to the World Heritage Committee on the implementation of the World Heritage Convention and state of conservation of properties;

o) contribute to and comply with the sustainable development objectives, including gender equality, in the World Heritage processes and in their heritage conservation and management systems.”

Theme:  6.3 - Gender equality
Source:  OG Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention (WHC.19/01 - 10 July 2019)
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37
Extracts
8
Case laws
12
Decisions
2
Documents