UNESCO has launched an initiative for the safeguarding of Historic Urban Landscapes as a follow-up to the Vienna Conference on "World Heritage and Contemporary Architecture - Managing the Historic Urban Landscape", which took place in May 2005 in Austria. The outcome of this conference, the so-called "Vienna Memorandum", formed the basis for the adoption of a ‘Declaration on the Conservation of Historic Urban Landscapes' during the 15th General Assembly of States Parties to the World Heritage Convention on 11 October 2005 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris. During this session, it was also recommended "that the General Conference of UNESCO adopt a new Recommendation to complement and update the existing ones on the subject of conservation of historic urban landscapes, with special reference to the need to link contemporary architecture to the urban historic context".

In this vein, the World Heritage Centre is planning a regional conference for the Americas to raise awareness on the subject, discuss issues of conservation and management of Historic Urban Landscapes in the region and receive expert input on the contents of this new Recommendation. The conference will take place in the Historic Centre of the Town of Olinda, a World Heritage site.

This is an Expert Meeting and participation is by invitation only.