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The World Heritage Centre has launched an Online Consultation with key World Heritage stakeholders on the updating of the “Policy Document on the Impacts of Climate Change on World Heritage properties”. The consultation, which is taking place until 20 January 2020, will gather feedback and comments from key World Heritage stakeholders of the World Heritage Convention on this crucial ...
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The World Heritage Centre has been following with attention and concern the situation in the Galapagos Islands, and in particular in the Island of San Cristobal, where a cargo vessel overturned on 22 December 2019, due to the fall of a container crane, causing a 600-gallon oil spill. According to official sources, the situation has been quickly mastered to avoid possible impacts on the ...
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Dear friends of World Heritage,  I would like to thank you once again for all of your support over the past year, to help protect our most precious heritage: All of you count! Whether you work in heritage conservation, work at a site, travel as a tourist, or even just visit the heritage places near your home, your awareness and efforts make a difference. It is also important to us to receive ...
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On the occasion of the Forum of Ministers of Culture on 19 November 2019 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, the Culture Sector proudly introduces the Culture|2030 Indicators. The Culture|2030 indicators is a framework of thematic indicators whose purpose is to measure and monitor the progress of culture’s enabling contribution to the national and local implementation of the Goals and ...
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In response to the results of the independent technical review of the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) commissioned by IUCN, the World Heritage Centre expresses grave concern over the state of conservation of Tanzania’s Selous Game Reserve World Heritage site and the impacts of the Rufiji Hydropower on the property. The review concludes that the strategic environmental assessment of ...
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From 25 to 29 November 2019, experts from World Heritage marine sites met in Indonesia to support the Komodo National Park with the management of its marine component. See the pictures Komodo National Park was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 1991 for its outstanding ecosystems and biodiversity. While perhaps best known for the Komodo Dragon, Komodo National Park’s Outstanding ...
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The seminar "Climate Change, World Heritage and Tourism" was presented at UNESCO Headquarters on 16 December 2019 by Paris 1 Panthéon-Sorbonne University in collaboration with UNESCO World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS France and the Association des biens français du patrimoine mondial. On a global scale, tourism is a factor contributing to climate change, especially when emissions are measured at ...
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International Mountain Day 2019
Wednesday, 11 December 2019
International Mountain Day, designated by the United Nations General Assembly in 2003 and celebrated on 11 December, highlights the importance of mountains to life on Earth. ‘Mountains matter for Youth’ is the theme of this year’s International Mountain Day. The 2019 International Mountain Day’s theme is a great opportunity for young generations, to enhance World Heritage conservation ...
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"Heritage, World Heritage and the Future: Perspectives on Scale, Conservation and Dialogue” The 14th International Anamed Symposium in cooperation with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre held on 5-6 December at ANAMED, Koc University in Istanbul produced important outcomes for archaeological World Heritage sites. The challenges affecting the conservation mechanism as well as the ...
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The Arab World Heritage Young Professionals Forum “empowering youth to build peace through the protection and preservation of heritage” starts today! The Forum was opened by H. E. Mr Mohamed Zinelabidine, Minister of Cultural Affairs of Tunisia, Dr Mohamed Ould Amar, Director-General of ALECSO; Dr Mechtild Rössler, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre; H. E. Ms Élaine Ayotte, ...
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The 22nd General Assembly of the States Parties to the World Heritage Convention is meeting on 27 and 28 November 2019 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, convening the 193 States Parties to the World Heritage Convention, under the chairmanship of H.E. Mr Adam Al Mulla, Ambassador and Permanent Delegate of the State of Kuwait to UNESCO. During the session, the General Assembly elected ...
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The World Heritage Centre expresses its concern over on-going bushfires in and around the Gondwana rainforests in Australia and offers its solidarity to the people affected. The UNESCO World Heritage Centre has been receiving many expressions of concern from the media and civil society over the possible impact of bushfires on the World Heritage property, “Gondwana Rainforests of Australia”, ...
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In view of the current global pandemic and following the extraordinary measures being taken to tackle the spread of COVID-19 globally, the 2020 Campaign of the World Heritage Volunteers (WHV) Initiative has been postponed to 2021. Read More “Fostering Youth Commitment towards World Heritage” The UNESCO World Heritage Centre is pleased to announce the Call for Projects for the World ...
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From 15 to 18 November, an expert meeting was convened by the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) together with Germany’s Federal Office for Nature Conservation (BfN) and in cooperation with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre on the Isle of Vilm, Germany to discuss how the World Heritage Convention can contribute to the new global agenda for biodiversity conservation.  At the ...
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The 2019 UNESCO-Greece Melina Mercouri International Prize for the Safeguarding and Management of Cultural Landscapes was awarded on 18 November to Instituto do Património Cultural in Cabo Verde for its outstanding contribution to the safeguarding, management and sustainable development of the Natural Park of Cova, Paul and Ribeira da Torre. The award ceremony took place at UNESCO ...
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This year’s UNESCO Sultan Qaboos Prize for Environmental Conservation will be awarded to the Bangalore-based Ashoka Trust for Research in Ecology and the Environment (ATREE) in recognition of its socially-just environmental conservation and sustainable development activities, following the recommendation of the international jury of the prize.  The award ceremony will be held in Budapest, ...
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Today marks the 47th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention. This Convention protects the world’s most outstanding places, belonging to us all. Where it all began The idea of creating an international movement for protecting heritage emerged after World War I. The 1972 Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage developed from the merging of two ...
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The UNESCO World Heritage Centre is closely monitoring the state of conservation of the World Heritage site of Venice and its Lagoon.  Inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1987, Venice faces several threats from overtourism, damage caused by a steady stream of cruise ships, and from the potential negative effects of new developments. The site is also highly vulnerable to the negative ...
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UNESCO has been at the forefront of exploring and managing the impacts of climate change on World Heritage, and supports World Heritage sites on climate change adaptation and mitigation activities. The promotion of renewable energy production is of great importance, as this technology is among the key solutions for the mitigation of climate change and the promotion of sustainable ...
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From 5 to 7 November 2019, a total of 27 participants—including Focal Points, Vice-Ministers, and academics—from 14 countries of the sub-regions of Mexico and Central America and the Caribbean gathered in Havana, Cuba, to analyze and discuss the relevance of their current Tentative Lists.  One of the central objectives of the three-day workshop was to strengthen the understanding of and ...
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On 18 November 2019 at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, the 2019 edition of the UNESCO-Greece Melina Mercouri International Prize for the Safeguarding and Management of Cultural Landscapes will be announced and the award presented.   Named after the illustrious Greek actress and former Minister of Culture of Greece, Melina Mercouri, the Prize rewards outstanding efforts to protect and ...
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UNESCO offers its sincere solidarity with the people of Japan, and in particular the residents of Okinawa, who have lost a cultural and historical symbol of the Ryukyu islands. UNESCO stands ready to assist the authorities as needed. In the early morning hours of 31 October, a number of buildings, including Shuri Castle of  the World Heritage site of “Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of ...
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World Cities Day
Thursday, 31 October 2019
The World Heritage Cities Programme supports countries in protecting and managing their urban heritage through theoretical application and technical advice. More than 315 World Heritage cities function as inhabited urban centres worldwide facing the challenges of balancing heritage conservation with contemporary urban development.'Changing the World: Innovations and Better Life for Future ...
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UNESCO and Expedia Group have signed a global agreement to promote sustainable tourism and heritage conservation through an industry-first Sustainable Tourism Pledge whose pilot phase will be launched in Thailand this year before going global. It is the first collaboration between UNESCO and a global online travel agency. The Sustainable Tourism Pledge requires tourism industry members to ...
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Recent flooding threatens the World Heritage property of the Historic Town of Grand-Bassam, Côte d'Ivoire. UNESCO is sending a mission to provide technical assistance to national and local authorities in assessing the damage and collecting all the data necessary for the preparation of a risk management plan that better takes account of the flood issue. On the weekend of 11 to 13 October, ...
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The Deputy-Director of the World Heritage Centre, Jyoti Hosagrahar, represented UNESCO at the First meeting of the European Commission Expert Group on Cultural Heritage in Brussels. The event was organized by the European Commission and took place on 15-16 October 2019. The European Commission Expert Group on cultural heritage was set up with the aim of continuing the spirit of cooperation ...
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Some 40 female members of the armed forces of Lebanon, Iraq and Jordan, as well as female peacekeepers from the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon (UNIFIL) came together in Beirut, Lebanon to discuss the protection of cultural property in the event of armed conflict. The workshop, which took place on 1-3 October 2019, was the first UNESCO-organized event specifically focused on female ...
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The first guide for the insurance industry to protect our world’s priceless and irreplaceable assets was launched today at a major event by UN Environment’s Finance Initiative (UNEP FI) in São Paulo, Brazil, convening leading insurers, investors and banks. The pioneering guide, Protecting our World Heritage, insuring a sustainable future, builds on last year’s launch of the first insurance ...
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Representatives from the city of Venice, the Italian government, UNESCO and ICOMOS came together at UNESCO Headquarters on 2 October 2019 to discuss the ongoing challenges facing Venice and its surrounding lagoon – an iconic site whose status as a World Heritage property is in jeopardy.  Inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1987, Venice is threatened on several fronts – from overtourism, ...
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This year’s World Migratory Bird Day is dedicated to highlighting the problem of pollution with the theme, ‘Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution.’ Waste and pollution are harmful to many World Heritage sites. Increased tourism means that more people are leaving trash at the world’s most iconic places. World Heritage sites are key stopover sites for birds, so the effective ...
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International Day for Disaster Reduction promotes a global culture of risk awareness and disaster reduction by celebrating how people around the world are reducing their exposure to disasters. This year’s theme is based on one Target of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction 2015-2030: ‘Substantially reduce disaster damage to critical infrastructure and disruption of services ...
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The Ethiopian Wildlife Conservation Authority (EWCA) in collaboration with UNESCO Addis Ababa Liaison Office and the UNESCO Regional Office for Eastern Africa organized a four-day technical workshop to strengthen national capacities in preparing World Heritage nomination dossiers for natural heritage sites, which ran from 23 to 27 September 2019 in Gondar Town, Amhara Region, ...
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On the occasion of the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly, UNESCO participated in several events of the Climate Summit and highlighted the role of education, science and culture in providing sustainable responses. The Director-General supported the call of six South American countries to conserve and protect the Amazon, the world's first tropical forest, at a high-level ...
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World Tourism Day 2019 : Tourism and jobs
Friday, 27 September 2019
The theme of this year’s World Tourism Day is, ‘Tourism and jobs, a better future for all.’ Given the booming worldwide travel industry, tourism now generates 10% of the world’s jobs or 313 million employees.Tourism is increasingly a major source of growth, employment and income for many of the world’s countries, and is included in Sustainable Development Goal 8 for its potential to create ...
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The UNESCO World Heritage Centre and the UNESCO Cluster Office in Tehran, in cooperation with the Iranian National Commission for UNESCO and the Iranian Ministry of Cultural Heritage, Tourism and Handicrafts, are organizing the 6th meeting of the Coordinating Committee of the Serial Transnational World Heritage Nomination of the Silk Roads from 23 to 26 September 2019 in Hamedan, Iran. The ...
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On 18 September 2019, Ms Angelique Songco, Superintendent of Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park World Heritage area was honored with the esteemed 2019 KfW-Bernhard-Grzimek-Preis for her outstanding leadership in conserving the World Heritage marine site. The award is a tribute to individuals and organizations for their commitment to the preservation of the world’s most precious biodiversity and ...
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The International Workshop on the Practical Application of the Salalah Guidelines for the Management of Public Archaeological Sites was opened by the authorities of the Sultanate of Oman (Office of the Advisor to His Majesty the Sultan for Cultural Affairs), with the Director of the World Heritage Centre, ICOMOS and the Director General of ICCROM.The workshop focused on the application of the ...
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As part of the Third Cycle of the Periodic Reporting Exercise in Africa, over 80 participants from 46 African States Parties with 96 World Heritage properties (53 cultural, 38 natural and 5 mixed) will be meeting at Grand Bassam, Cote-d’Ivoire, from 11 to 14 September 2019, to go through the statutory processes of the World Heritage Convention.  This regional meeting organized by the World ...
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Tourist guides from World Heritage Sites in Iran participated in the “World Heritage Specialist Guide Training Program” in Kermanshah from 04 to 08 August 2019 to upgrade their knowledge of World Heritage Sites and acquire new skills needed to become a specialized World Heritage tour guide.The participants composed a mixed group coming from the Iranian Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and ...
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Two UNESCO World Heritage marine sites with similar conservation challenges signed an official Partnership Agreement to share ideas and best practices. The seeds of the agreement were sown at the 2010 World Heritage marine managers conference, and site-to-site exchanges over the past years were also central in achieving the recent zero emissions target for West Norwegian Fjords ...
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From 4 to 9 September, managers from the 50 marine sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List gather in a momentous setting to discuss challenges and solutions toward reaching the 2030 United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. With the oceans facing existential threats and global targets only a decade away, time is critical. Bringing managers together provides an opportunity to accelerate ...
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On 7 September  2019 the new visitors centre at the Mill Network at Kinderdijk-Elshout in the Netherlands was formally opened. Officiating the celebration was Princess Beatrix, patroness of the Dutch Windmill Association. After meeting with volunteers from the Kinderijk World Heritage Foundation the Princess opened the building among a spectacular show of music, fountains, and light ...
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The ambitious capacity-building agenda for World Heritage in Mexico and Central America recently saw a major step forward with the first sub-regional workshop held from 26 to 28 August 2019, organized by the Category 2 Centre based in Zacatecas, Mexico. Representatives from Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, and Panama, as well as Caribbean participants from ...
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The German city of Dessau is marking the 100th anniversary of the Bauhaus school of design with a new museum featuring exhibits that tie in with the movement’s iconic buildings. Chancellor Angela Merkel opened the Bauhaus Museum Dessau on Sunday, saying the school featured an avant-garde style that “we still really enjoy today.” The Bauhaus movement was born on 1 October 1919 in Weimar, ...
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[in French only] L’UNESCO et le Ministère de la Culture du Mali ont présenté un plan d’action de 2,2 millions de dollars aux populations du site du Patrimoine mondial des Falaises de Bandiagara en Pays dogon, afin de favoriser un retour à la normale après les violences intercommunautaires ayant affecté le centre du pays. Dans ce contexte, et après la reconstruction des mausolées de ...
[in French only] 3 min read
Empowering youth to build peace through the protection and preservation of heritage. The Arab World Heritage Young Professionals Forum will take place from 2 to 6 December 2019 in Tunis, Tunisia, and will gather up to 38 participants from the Arab States region. The Forum aims to engage and empower youth in the Arab States region in their critical roles as global citizens towards ...
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Within the framework of the Project for the Preservation and Support of the Tourist Sector (PAST), the UNESCO Office in Port-au-Prince is seeking to recruit a consultant - an expert in the conservation of historical heritage - Senior Coordinator of the Project for the Preservation of Heritage and Support to the Tourist Sector (PAST), hence the attached Terms of Reference. Any interested ...
[in French only] 1 min read
This  23  August,  we  honour  the  memory  of  the  men  and  women  who,  in  Saint-Domingue  in  1791,  revolted  and  paved  the  way  for  the  end  of  slavery  and  dehumanization. We honour their memory and that of all the other victims of slavery, for whom they stand.The fight against trafficking and slavery is universal and ongoing. It is the reason for which UNESCO led the efforts ...
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Audrey Azoulay, the Director-General of UNESCO, will undertake an official visit to Uzbekistan to take part in the International Conference on the Preservation of Tangible and Intangible Cultural Heritage, alongside Uzbekistan’s President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, on 26 August. A significant number of culture and tourism ministers from across the region and beyond are also expected to ...
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The World Heritage Centre launched today the Arabic translation of the publication “Managing effectively the world’s most iconic Marine Protected Areas. A Best Practice Guide”. There are currently three World Heritage marine sites in the Arab region, in Mauritania, Sudan and Yemen. Download Now The publication lays the groundwork for a common approach to a more pro-active, future-oriented ...
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Across the world, young people are faced with inequalities in education. Yet, they are also key actors in the transformation of education that we are calling for. Their ideas and innovative spirit need to be heard in order to reach our common goas inscribed in Agenda 2030, which is our greatest opportunity to build more inclusive and fair societies. Education is the heart of UNESCO’s action ...
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Since 1982, the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples has provided us with a unique opportunity to raise global awareness of the contributions made by indigenous peoples towards building peace and developing sustainable and resilient societies. On this Day, we take steps to recognise and acknowledge indigenous peoples as knowledge-holders who have contributed to the ...
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Seabourn, the world’s leading small ship cruise line, has signed an agreement to extend its official partnership with the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in a unique alliance to help protect World Heritage. The five-year extension will continue to foster wider support and understanding in the travel industry and among travelers for UNESCO’s mission ...
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On 16 July 2019, US$ 2.9 million (NOK 25 million) were received from Norway as part of a partnership agreement signed last month supporting UNESCO's work in various fields, including heritage preservation. These funds will be dedicated to the preservation of natural World Heritage sites in Africa. The significant increase in Norway’s contribution vividly demonstrates its commitment to the ...
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Mangroves are rare, spectacular and prolific ecosystems on the boundary between land and sea. These extra ordinary ecosystems contribute to the wellbeing, food security, and protection of coastal communities worldwide. They support a rich biodiversity and provide a valuable nursery habitat for fish and crustaceans. Mangroves also act as a form of natural coastal defense against storm surges, ...
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As a side event of the meeting of the World Heritage Committee (Baku from 1 to 10 July), UNESCO and its partners met on 5 July to take stock of the initiative launched in October 2018 to strengthen coral reef adaptation to climate change. The initiative aims to establish an effective strategy for climate change resilience in five coral reefs inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List: the ...
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On 3 July 2019, during its 43rd session in Baku, Azerbaijan, the World Heritage Committee inscribed the Islands and Protected Areas of the Gulf of California in Mexico on the List of World Heritage in Danger. One of the main reasons for this decision is the current vulnerable situation of the vaquita species, whose population, according to the most recent scientific evidence, has drastically ...
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The 2019 edition of the World Heritage Young Professionals Forum gathered 30 participants from 30 countries to address the global challenge of heritage protection and conservation in the 21st century. Following the case studies of the World Heritage proprieties in Azerbaijan, the theme of this year’s Forum was chosen as “World Heritage: Local Insights for Global Challenges”. During the ...
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For the first time, indigenous peoples from across the globe gathered during the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee in Baku, Azerbaijan, to highlight the importance of indigenous languages for safeguarding World Heritage properties. In an event marking the International Year of Indigenous Languages 2019, the indigenous panelists stressed that without language, there can be no ...
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The city of Fuzhou (China) will host the next session of the World Heritage Committee in 2020. This decision concluded the work of the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku since 30 June. During this year’s session, the World Heritage Committee inscribed a total of 29 new sites on the World Heritage List (one in Africa, two in the Arab States, ten in the Asia Pacific ...
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The World Heritage Policy Compendium - a consolidated source of policy decisions made under the Convention - is now online. The World Heritage Policy Compendium is a collection of policies that have guided the implementation of the World Heritage Convention since its adoption in 1972. It assembles the policies adopted by the World Heritage Committee and General Assembly of States Parties in ...
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During its meeting in Baku this afternoon, the World Heritage Committee, inscribed two cultural sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, ending this year’s inscriptions on the List. The newly added sites, by order of inscription: Le Colline del Prosecco di Conegliano e Valdobbiadene (Italy) — Located in north-eastern Italy, the site includes part of the vinegrowing landscape of the Prosecco ...
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During its meeting in Baku this morning, the World Heritage Committee inscribed six cultural sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The newly inscribed sites are located in Azerbaijan, Portugal, the Russian Federation, Spain, and the UK. Inscriptions will continue in the afternoon. New sites, by order of inscription:  Royal Building of Mafra—Palace, Basilica, Convent, Cerco Garden and ...
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During its meeting in Baku this afternoon, the World Heritage Committee inscribed seven cultural sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The sites added this afternoon are located in Canada, Czechia, Germany, Republic of Korea, Myanmar and Poland. Inscriptions will continue tomorrow, 7 July. New sites, by order of inscription: Bagan (Myanmar) — Lying on a bend of the Ayeyarwady River in the ...
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During the morning session of its current meeting, in Baku, the World Heritage Committee inscribed seven cultural sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. The sites added to the List are situated in Australia, Bahrain, China, India, Indonesia, Japan and People’s Democratic Republic of Lao. Inscriptions will continue through 7 July. New sites, by order of inscription:  Dilmun Burial Mounds ...
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The World Heritage Committee inscribed five new sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List this afternoon. Among them are two natural sites, one in France and one in Iceland, a mixed, i.e. natural and cultural, site in Brazil and two cultural sites in Burkina Faso and Iraq. The Committee also approved the extension of the transboundary natural and cultural heritage site of the Ohrid region ...
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During its morning session, the World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku until 10 July, inscribed two natural sites in China and in the Islamic Republic of Iran on the UNESCO’s World Heritage List: Migratory Bird Sanctuaries along the Coast of Yellow Sea-Bohai Gulf of China (Phase I) (China)—The site features an intertidal mudflat system considered to be the largest in the world. These ...
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On 4 July 2019, a special event devoted to the theme "Qhapaq Ñan, Sharing experiences and good practices" brought together representatives of Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador and Peru with the aim of sharing their collaborative achievements in management and conservation of this serial and transboundary World Heritage site.  Participants presented concrete and important results ...
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The World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku since 30 June, has decided to inscribe the Islands and Protected Areas of the Gulf of California (Mexico) on the List of World Heritage in Danger due to concerns about the imminent extinction of the vaquita, an endemic porpoise in the Gulf of California. Mexico has made efforts to protect these threatened species, notably by creating a refuge for ...
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During the 43rd session of the World Heritage Committee currently taking place until 10 July in Baku (Azerbaijan), four decisions concerning the Middle East were adopted by consensus, after constructive discussions between all delegations involved including Israel, Jordan and Palestine, and mediation by the UNESCO Secretariat. In her opening statement to the Committee, UNESCO ...
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The World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku since 30 June, decided to remove the site of Humberstone and Santa Laura Saltpeter Works (Chile) from the List of World Heritage in Danger thanks to the national authorities’ measures to ensure its sustainable conservation and management. The Saltpeter Works were inscribed on the World Heritage List in 2005 and, simultaneously, on the List of ...
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The World Heritage Committee, meeting in Baku since 30 June, today decided to remove the Birthplace of Jesus: the Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Palestine) from the List of World Heritage in Danger. The Committee said its decision was due to the high quality of work carried out on the Nativity Church, the restoration of its roof, exterior facades, mosaics and ...
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The opening ceremony of this year’s session of the World Heritage Committee was held on 30 June at the Heydar Aliyev Centre in Baku, marking the start of the Committee’s work, scheduled to continue until 10 July. UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay welcomed the enthusiasm for World Heritage and “its exceptional ability to bring people together.” She urged “respect for the spirit of the ...
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20-22 June: African academics and heritage experts met in the city of Teramo, in the Abruzzo region of Italy, to unpack the concept of ‘prevention’ as a tool for sustainable development, emphasizing the need to place the youth in the centre of this concept by making it relevant to them. Organized under the theme “Protection of cultural and natural heritage and resources through prevention: ...
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Tuesday, June 25 - Recent flooding and the security situation threaten the preservation of the Minaret and Archaeological Remains of Jam, Afghanistan. UNESCO will send a mission to the site and launch a safeguarding project, thanks to funding from the International Alliance for the Protection of Heritage in Conflict Areas (ALIPH) of USD 1.9 million. The Minaret of Jam is exposed to several ...
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The World Heritage Committee will examine 36 nominations for inscription on UNESCO’s World Heritage List during its 43rd session, which will take place in Baku, the capital of Azerbaijan, from 30 June to 10 July under the chair of Abulfas Garayev, Minister of Culture of Azerbaijan. The Committee will furthermore examine the state of conservation of 166 sites already inscribed on the World ...
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Heritage authorities from six heritage cities in Asia, Pacific and Africa gather in George Town, Penang, Malaysia, from 20 to 21 June 2019 to attend a workshop entitled “Experience Sharing Workshop on Disaster Risk Reduction (DRR) Strategy among Heritage Cities in Southeast Asia, Pacific and Africa“ held by UNESCO Office Jakarta in collaboration with George Town World Heritage Incorporated ...
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As a global report released a month ago shows, the world’s ecosystems and biodiversity are deteriorating faster than at any time in human history, undermining humanity’s well-being and future existence.  The Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services, released by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) in early May, ...
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The UNESCO-Africa-China Forum on World Heritage Capacity Building and Cooperation, held at UNESCO Headquarters from 3 – 4 June 2019, concluded with Recommendations and an Action Plan for joint projects supporting long-term capacity building for the safeguarding of African World Heritage properties.  It was attended by ministers, decision-makers, World Heritage site managers, academics and ...
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Following the devastating fire at Mount Kenya National Park in February 2019 and the subsequent rampaging wildfire at Simien Mountains National Park in April 2019, UNESCO organized a capacity-building workshop in disaster risk management for World Heritage site managers and other stakeholders from Kenya and Ethiopia from 11 to 14 June 2019 at Mount Kenya World Heritage site in Nanyuki ...
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“Heritage it is an inherent part of our identity. It is a way to understand each other better” mentioned Victoria Kelly, one of the participants to the European Young Heritage Professionals Forum  that gathered young practitioners with a background in both tangible and intangible cultural heritage. Participants came from the 28 Member States of the European Union to discuss the multifaceted ...
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This World Oceans Day, 8 June, is dedicated to gender and the ocean. To celebrate the day, UNESCO honours all women whose scientific work is enhancing the conservation of the 49 marine sites inscribed on the World Heritage List. Discover the fascinating work of some of these women scientists through the videos below. Ocean science is crucial for the protection and conservation of World ...
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The Third Cycle of Periodic Reporting (2018 – 2024), a global World Heritage conservation monitoring exercise carried out in six-year cycles, begin in this second half of September 2019 with reporting in the Africa region. 35 African States Parties with 95 World Heritage properties (52 cultural, 38 natural and 5 mixed properties) as well as the site(s) inscribed at the 43rd session of the ...
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This year, World Environment Day is focused on air pollution. Almost all of us are affected by it: 92 per cent of people worldwide do not breathe clean air. So in 2019, those celebrating World Environment Day will urge governments, industry, communities, and individuals to come together to explore renewable energy and green technologies, and improve air quality in cities across the ...
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The Yaksu-ri and Susan-ri tombs, two exceptional testaments to the civilisation of the Koguryo kingdom, were successfully conserved thanks to the UNESCO/Republic of Korea Funds-in-Trust project “Safeguarding of Koguryo Tombs in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)”, coordinated by UNESCO and implemented since 2000 in three consecutive phases. The property includes about 30 tombs ...
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The three countries agree on a roadmap to explore the boundary extension of the Okavango Delta World Heritage site to protect the river basin and the unique wetland system. The States Parties of Angola, Botswana and Namibia met in Maun in Botswana on 3-4 June 2019 to discuss transboundary cooperation and ways to improve conservation of the Okavango Delta (Botswana) World Heritage site ...
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In Memoriam: Michael Petzet
Friday, 31 May 2019
The team of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre would like to express its sadness after learning that former President of ICOMOS International, Prof Michael Petzet passed away on 30 May 2019. The passing away of Michael Petzet represents an important loss for the conservation community. His strong opinions were always a reflection of his unerring commitment to excellence in the conservation of ...
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On 3 and 4 June, the UNESCO-Africa-China Forum on World Heritage Capacity Building and Cooperation will seek to strengthen collaboration between Africa and China in the preservation of World Heritage. It will also provide an opportunity to take stock of the sustainable development challenges facing World Heritage sites in both China and Africa and foster the sharing of experience in ...
2 min read
This World Oceans Day, 8 June, will be dedicated to gender and the ocean. To celebrate the day, UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission and the World Heritage Centre are teaming up to honour all women whose scientific work is enhancing the conservation of the 49 marine sites inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Join up and send us your short video by 31 May 2019. Everyone ...
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An outstanding video of Cameroon’s Dja Faunal Reserve and the Sangha TriNational submitted by Ancel Langwa won the first prize in the Instagram video contest organized by the World Heritage Centre (WHC) and the African World Heritage Fund (AWHF) on the occasion of the fourth edition of African World Heritage Day (5 May). The contest closed on Monday, May 20, 2019. The 27 submitted videos ...
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This year’s International Day for Biological Diversity focuses on biodiversity as the foundation for our food and health and as a key catalyst to transforming food systems and improving human well-being. The World Heritage Convention recognizes some World Heritage properties specifically for their outstanding biodiversity values, protecting many of the most important ecosystems and areas of ...
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The World Heritage Centre organized a series of testing sessions for the on‑line tool of the World Heritage Policy Compendium. These testing sessions, which took place between April and May 2019, gathered feedback and comments from key World Heritage stakeholders on the Policy Compendium On‑line Tool, currently being developed by the World Heritage Centre. The consultation is carried out ...
1 min read
The latest version of the World Heritage map, produced by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and National Geographic Maps with the support of Azerbaijan, can now be ordered from the World Heritage Centre website. The featured image on the map presents the Walled City of Baku with the Shirvanshah's Palace and Maiden Tower World Heritage property in Azerbaijan, country hosting the next session ...
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28 young heritage professionals with diverse backgrounds varying from ethnomusicology to architecture and visual computing technologies will come together for the European Young Heritage Professionals Forum to address for the first time both tangible heritage and intangible cultural heritage and to explore the potential synergies and challenges of their protection and safeguarding in the ...
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The panel on ‘Heritage and Water’ during the UNESCO International Water Conference (13-14 May at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris) highlighted the spiritual and cultural significance of water at many heritage sites, and called for enhancing cooperation between planners and practitioners to demonstrate the importance of water management systems to policymakers.They also emphasized the need to ...
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This year’s World Migratory Bird Day is dedicated to highlighting the problem of pollution with the theme, ‘Protect Birds: Be the Solution to Plastic Pollution.’ Waste and pollution are harmful to many World Heritage sites. Increased tourism means that more people are leaving trash at the world’s most iconic places. World Heritage sites are key stopover sites for birds, so the effective ...
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A year-long process of discussion and collaboration regarding the update to Peru’s Tentative List culminated in April with the unanimous approval of the new proposal that will guide the country’s World Heritage strategy over the coming years.  The process involved an extensive preparatory and research phase, two national-level workshops, and permanent collaboration between the authorities ...
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Launched at UNESCO in Paris on Monday 6 May, the Global Assessment Report on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services by the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) sends an alarming message to the world. Ecosystems and biodiversity are deteriorating faster than at any time in human history, undermining humanity’s well-being and future ...
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Describing nature’s decline as unprecedented and citing among many indicators, 1,000,000 species threatened with extinction, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) laid bare the threats to all life on earth in its Global Assessement Report, released at UNESCO headquarters today. UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay says the report put ...
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Since 2016, we have been celebrating African World Heritage Day on 5 May. Proclaimed by the General Conference at its 38th session in 2015, this day was established to raise public awareness, among young people in particular, of the immense potential of the African cultural and natural heritage. For this fourth celebration, we would like not only to celebrate the richness of this heritage, ...
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The UNESCO World Heritage Centre is pleased to publish the selected projects for the World Heritage Volunteers (WHV) Campaign 2019 What is the World Heritage Volunteers (WHV) Initiative? The WHV Initiative was launched in 2008 to encourage young people to undertake concrete actions and to play an active role in the protection, preservation and promotion of World Heritage sites. It consists ...
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Today at UNESCO HQ in Paris, the Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) opened its Seventh session. During the session the members of the Liaison Group of Biodiversity-related Conventions (including the eight Biodiversity-related Conventions, the CBD, the World Heritage Convention, CITES, CMS, the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands, IPPC, the ...
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International Earth Day is celebrated every year on 22 April to remind us that the Earth and its ecosystems provide us with sustenance, and that we have a collective responsibility to achieve balance among the economic, social and environmental needs of present and future generations. This year’s Earth Day highlights the importance of protecting species. World Heritage sites are home to the ...
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As we celebrate International Day for Monuments and Sites 2019, with the theme of Rural landscapes, we highlight the value of conserving this heritage formed through long-term, harmonious interaction between humankind and the natural environment. Protecting these landscapes is key for sustainable development. Rural landscapes are biocultural mosaics—using land sustainably for production ...
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“Our hearts are broken”Audrey Azoulay “We are filled with emotion and our hearts are broken,” said UNESCO Director General Audrey Azoulay as she witnessed the devastating fire tear through the historic cathedral of Notre Dame de Paris this evening. The cathedral is part of the 1991 World Heritage inscription, Paris, Banks of the Seine, which also includes bridges, quays and the banks of the ...
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WHITRAP announces the online publication of the Proceedings of the Expert Meeting “The Implementation of UNESCO Historic Urban Landscape Recommendation” held in Shanghai, China, from 26th to 28th March 2018. Urban living is increasingly becoming the most common mode of habitation. Urban areas are coping with the pressure resulting from increasing population, uncontrolled development, ...
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On 26 and 27 March 2019, World Heritage Site Managers of the Arab States region came together in Cairo, Egypt for a workshop in the framework of the Third Cycle of Periodic Reporting which currently being implemented in the region. The World Heritage Centre, in close cooperation with the Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (ARC-WH) and the UNESCO Office in Cairo, organized the ...
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Launched in September 2018, UNESCO’s World Heritage Journeys website (VisitEUWorldHeritage.com), produced in collaboration with National Geographic, is a finalist for a Webby Award—the Internet’s most coveted award. As a Webby Nominee, VisitEUWorldHeritage.com has been chosen by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences as one of the five best in the world in the category of ...
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World Heritage Youth Fora are among the flagship activities of the World Heritage Education Programme, serving as a platform for bringing young professionals and heritage experts together to foster intercultural learning and exchange, to debate about common concerns and to discover new roles for themselves in heritage conservation. In this context, and as an integral part of the 43rd session ...
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The World Heritage Centre is determined to support Solomon Islands and Australia in exploring all options to hold the responsible company, owners and insurers to account. The Director of the World Heritage Centre wrote a letter to both the shipping and charter firm South Express Ltd, the owner of the MV Solomon Trader, and the insurance firm Korea Protection and Indemnity Club (Korea P&I ...
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In response to the fires in Mount Kenya National Park in early March, the Kenyan authorities - Mount Kenya Trust - submitted a grant application to the Rapid Response Facility (RRF) and obtained the maximum amount of US$30,000. This support will make it possible to finance hours of helicopter flights to monitor the Park's risk areas and intervene with water bombers in the event of new fire ...
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World Heritage is the official publication from the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, dedicated to presenting detailed feature articles about the most outstanding cultural and natural sites around the world. World Heritage is a quarterly magazine published since 1996 in English, French and Spanish. Explore recent issues or subscribe today. We would be very grateful if you would spend a few ...
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UNESCO Sub-regional Conference on World Heritage Global Strategy in the context of South Asia met in Kolkata (21-22 February 2019) released the Kolkata Recommendation as a strategy for future implementation of the World Heritage Global Strategy in the Sub-region. The Sub-regional Conference, attended by approximately 55 governmental officials, experts from Bangladesh, Bhutan, India, ...
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On 26 and 27 February 2019, World Heritage Focal Points of the Arab States region came together at UNESCO Headquarters (Paris, France) for a workshop in the framework of the Third Cycle of Periodic Reporting exercise which is currently being implemented in the region. The workshop, hosted by the World Heritage Centre in close cooperation with the Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage ...
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This Women’s Day we celebrate our female World Heritage site managers: heroines protecting our most outstanding places. Women play a crucial role in conservation - they are the rangers protecting Virunga National Park (Democratic Republic of the Congo), the first site in the region to have female rangers. They safeguard marine World Heritage sites such as Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park ...
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Together for heritage! The European Young Heritage Professionals Forum will take place from 20 to 24 May 2019 in Zadar, Croatia to explore potential synergies and challenges of working on tangible and intangible cultural heritage in the European context. The Forum will enable participants to enhance project management and communication skills by working on their own heritage projects with ...
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A new IUCN SOS – Save Our Species Call for Proposals is now open. Financed in partnership with the European Commission’s DG DEVCO, this call is focused on African Wildlife. It prioritises five species of carnivores, namely lions, leopards, cheetahs, African wild dogs and Ethiopian wolves. A limited proportion of the funding will be earmarked for additional threatened species. These include ...
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For more than a week, devastating fires have raged in Mount Kenya National Park, inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1997 and a part of the Mount Kenya Biosphere Reserve since 1978. According to the Kenya National Parks Service (KWS), these fires have already destroyed more than 80,000 hectares of forest and grassland, which represents almost half the area of the World Heritage site. ...
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An oil spill has occurred near East Rennell, the only natural World Heritage site in the Pacific that is on the Danger List. Experts from Australia are currently working with the national authorities to ascertain the status of the situation and advice on possible mitigation measures to be taken. On 4 February 2019, the bulk carrier MV Solomon Trader ran aground in Kangava Bay, Rennell ...
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The theme of this year’s World Wildlife Day aligns with Sustainable Development Goal 14: life below water. It is also the first World Wildlife Day highlighting marine biodiversity. World Heritage marine sites are home to the world’s most exceptional species on earth such as the Bengal tiger, marine iguanas, and the Coelacanth, the world’s oldest fish.Despite this rich wildlife, our sites ...
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On behalf of the World Heritage Centre, Director Ms Mechtild Rössler expresses her solidarity with the efforts currently being undertaken by national authorities in Colombia to curb increasing security challenges in the country’s national parks, some of which are classified as natural World Heritage properties. In the light of these increasing and dramatic pressures, Parques Nacionales ...
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The first regional meeting on "Transboundary Cooperation for effective management of World Heritage Sites in Africa" was held from 11 to 15 February 2019 in the city of Man (Côte d'Ivoire), located at 100 km from the Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve, the first African transboundary property inscribed on the World Heritage List. Funded by the Netherlands Funds-in-Trust, the main objective of ...
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An oil spill has reportedly occurred in East Rennell, Solomon Islands on Tuesday, 19 February when a bulk carrier ran aground at Kangava Bay, just outside of the World Heritage property. East Rennell was inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1998 and is the largest raised coral atoll in the world. The site includes Lake Tegano, a brackish lake containing many rugged limestone islets which ...
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Launched in July 2017 with financial support from the Netherlands Funds-in-Trust, the “Communities and reinforcement of the management of the Royal Palaces of Abomey World Heritage Site” project, has been successfully concluded with a three-day cultural celebration event, from 27 to 29 December 2018. These ‘Cultural Days’ which responded to the theme “Let’s open our Palaces!”, were organized ...
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In 2012, Rio de Janeiro, a Carioca landscape between the mountains and the sea, became the first urban cultural landscape ever inscribed on the World Heritage List.  To its beaches, carnival, football and World Heritage, also represented by the archaeological site of the Valongo pier (inscribed in 2017), the Brazilian metropolis now adds yet another attraction: architecture. Following an ...
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Bauhaus celebrates its 100th anniversary
Friday, 15 February 2019
On 1 October 1919 in Weimar (Germany), a new kind of art school founded by architect Walter Gropius welcomed its first students, and Bauhaus was born. In 2019, we are celebrating the centenary of this school founded after the First World War.  A festival, two museums, exhibitions and even a television series dedicated to Walter Gropius will mark the anniversary of this Movement that ...
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After heavy rains hit northeastern Togo in August 2018, UNESCO led an emergency mission to the World Heritage Property of Koutammakou, to assess the scale of the damage including to some of the world’s rarest architectural structures – the two-storey mud “tower” houses known as Takienta. The mission, which comprised three international and four national experts, visited the villages of ...
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UNESCO New Delhi and the Ministry of Tourism, West Bengal Government (India), in support of the Archaeological Survey of India, are organizing a sub-regional conference World Heritage Global Strategy in the context of South Asia on 21 and 22 February 2019 in Kolkata. The Global Strategy, launched in 1994 by the World Heritage Committee, has the aim to ensure that the List reflects the ...
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This year’s World Wetlands Day under the theme of “Wetlands and Climate Change” highlights the importance of healthy and intact wetlands to one of the most pressing challenges of our times: climate change.  Celebrated annually on 2 February, the day the Ramsar Convention on Wetlands was adopted in 1971, World Wetlands Day is a success story of the international community ensuring efficient ...
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Marine World Heritage 2019 Annual Report
Thursday, 31 January 2019
Throughout 2018, the World Heritage Marine Programme led transformational changes at specific sites, furthered research on climate change impacts and advanced the fight against marine pollution. Download the Report The highlight of 2018 was undoubtedly the removal of the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System from the UNESCO List of World Heritage in Danger. Lauded in the New York Times as “A ...
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Following the Fifth Meeting of the Coordinating Committee on Serial Transnational World Heritage Nomination of the Silk Roads, 4–5 December 2018, Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, the participants including national focal points and experts from thirteen countries, adopted a list of decisions for further activities to preserve and manage the Cultural Heritage sites along the Silk Roads. The 5th ...
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The staff of the World Heritage Centre would like to express its sadness after learning that Dr. Bradnee Chambers, Executive Secretary of the Convention on the Conservation of Migratory Species of Wild Animals (CMS), passed away on 23 January 2019 after a short illness. This is a tragic loss for CMS, all biodiversity related Conventions and the United Nations. Bradnee became Executive ...
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Following the decision adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 42nd session (Manama, 2018), a high-level World Heritage Centre/ICOMOS Reactive Monitoring mission, led by the Deputy Director of the World Heritage Centre, is being dispatched to the World Heritage property "Historic Centre of Shakhrisyabz" (Uzbekistan) on 21-26 January 2019, at the invitation of the Uzbek government. The ...
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A pioneering insurance industry guide to protect our planet’s most special places through its risk management, insurance and investment activities will be created in 2019 with leading insurers. This follows the 2018 launch of the world’s first insurance industry statement of commitment to protect World Heritage Sites developed by UN Environment’s Principles for Sustainable Insurance ...
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From 9 to 11 January 2019, ICCROM organized an experts meeting at the Egyptian Academy of Arts in Rome to reflect on its new initiative entitled “Africa Programme 2020-2029: Changing the Face of  Heritage and Conservation in Africa”. The 15 experts representing cultural and heritage institutions on the African continent, ICCROM and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, shared their specific ...
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The Earth Skills Network (ESN) is a unique collaboration between Earthwatch, UNESCO, IUCN and the business community. It connects leaders from the business and conservation community through mentoring and skill-sharing opportunities. The Earth Skills Network provides funded training in: business planning and effective management practices and, personal development of leadership ...
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Dear friends, As 2019 begins, I’d like thank everyone who has made efforts to protect World Heritage sites, whether by taking action at a property, making a donation for site preservation, or just by being a thoughtful tourist. 2018 was a challenging year with many threats to World Heritage globally. In addition to specific threats ranging from logging to overfishing, from ill-advised ...
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