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On 19 June 2012, the Government of Singapore officially deposited with the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, its instrument of ratification, becoming the 190th State Party to accept the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. The World Heritage Convention has entered into force for this State Party on 19 September 2012.
It was with great sadness that the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, learned of the passing of Russell E. Train, former President of the World Wildlife Fund, who died on 17 September at the age of 92. Russell E. Train was a renowned US conservationist who played a central role in creating groundbreaking laws in response to rising concerns about environmental protection in America and ...
A study commissioned by the World Heritage Centre reviews the total carbon stored in trees, leaves forest litter and soil for all 106 World Heritage forest sites.  Carried out by Mr. Devendra Pandey, the former Director General of the Indian Forest Survey, the study is the first to look specifically at World Heritage forests sites, combining information from different sources, to obtain ...
On Saturday 15 September, the IUCN World Conservation Congress ended on the Island of Jeju, Republic of Korea, which harbors the “Jeju Volcanos Island and Lava Tubes” World Heritage site. Held every four years, the congress is the world’s largest and most important conservation event and the current edition was attended by 10,000 people, including 5,000 conservation experts ...
InterContinental Hotels & Resorts Responsible Business Week to run from 17-23 September 2012 InterContinental Hotels & Resorts today embarks on a week-long programme of activities around the world to help protect and preserve unique cultural heritage sites as part of Responsible Business Week 2012. This marks the third year of InterContinental’s Responsible Business Week in ...
UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova traveled to Colonia del Sacramento today, and visited the old city, which became the first World Heritage site of Uruguay in 1995. She was accompanied by the Minister of Culture and Education, Mr. Ricardo Erlich and by the Permanent Delegate of Uruguay to UNESCO, Ambassador Omar Mesa Gonzalez. During her visit, she met with local officials and discussed ...
The Jurassic Coast Earth Festival 2012 was a celebration of England’s only natural World Heritage Site – the Dorset and EastDevonCoast, commonly known as the JurassicCoast.  The 95 miles of coastline from Exmouth to StudlandBay tells the story of 185 million years of the earth’s history through its geological exposures and landforms, and is inscribed on the list under ...
The IUCN World Conservation Congress, the world’s largest and most important conservation event, began 6 September on the Island of Jeju, Republic of Korea. Held every four years, the Congress aims to improve how we manage our natural environment for human, social and economic development. The Island of Jeju harbors one of Korea’s natural World Heritage sites (Jeju Volcanic ...
The  recently established Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (ARC-WH) in Manama, Bahrain, is currently recruiting a Culture Heritage Specialist. The incumbent will be responsible for the implementation of Cultural Heritage Programme for the Arab Region in ARCWH. The Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage was established as a Category 2 Centre under the auspices of UNESCO to ...
Featuring a useful week-at-a-glance design, the Desk Diary is illustrated with colour photos of World Heritage sites, each accompanied with a short caption. It also introduces the Convention Concerning the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage; its objectives, the selection criteria, the institutions which ensure its implementation, as well as the list of States Parties ...
During her visit to Naples on the occasion of the World Urban Forum organized by UN-HABITAT, the Director-General, Irina Bokova, commended the Italian authorities, and in particular the Municipal authorities and Superintendency of Region for the positive emergency conservation achievements at the World Heritage archaeological complex of Pompei, following the collapse of walls in 2010 and ...
The government of Argentina has designated its 21st Wetland of International Importance, called the Humedales de Península Valdés (42,695 hectares), comprising two coastal sub-sites along the gulfs on either side of the Valdés peninsula in Patagonia, within the much larger Península Valdés World Heritage property that was inscribed in the UNESCO World ...
In June 2012, the World Heritage Education Center for Youth (Beijing, China) and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC) launched the Patrimonito National Storyboard Competition, China. Of the 103 student submissions, 15 of the storyboards were selected by the Chinese World Heritage Education Center for Youth of Beijing and sent to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre. The medals ...
UNESCO is monitoring closely the impact of wildfires in Southern Europe and the southernmost portion of the European Union. The Organization has been in constant contact with the local authorities in affected areas. These devastating fires have not only touched World Heritage sites and Biosphere Reserves, but have also irreversibly changed the lives of many. People have been forced to abandon ...
Launch of ICOMOS-ICORP website
Friday, 17 August 2012
ICOMOS-ICORP recently launched its new website and Facebook page. ICOMOS- ICORP is the International Scientific Committee on Risk Preparedness of the International Council on Monuments and Sites ICOMOS; an International NGO dedicated towards the protection and management of cultural heritage. The goals of the International Scientific Committee on Risk ...
Panasonic Vietnam, in cooperation with UNESCO’s Office in Hanoi, organized the Eco Learning program on UNESCO World Heritage for students of secondary schools in Hanoi, on 9 and 10  August at the Central Sector of the Imperial Citadel of Thang Long – Hanoi (Thang Long Imperial Citadel). Representatives from the Ministry of Education and Training participated in the ...
"Regardless of political positioning, the public is deeply concerned about the security situation in Aleppo and the safety of its citizens during the civil conflict. Aleppo, the Milennial City of Art and History, Is now in Danger, and its Cultural heritage of outstanding universal value is now under threat. On behalf of the World Heritage Committee, while expressing our solidarity ...
Close to one thousand years ago, Anawrahta, king of the first Myanmar Empire and a staunch advocate of Theravada Buddhism, embarked on one of the most ambitious religious construction programs in history in his kingdom’s capital city, Bagan. Today, over 3,000 temples and pagodas – the largest concentration in the world - stretch as far as the eye can see across the plains to the ...
At its tenth session, the UN Permanent Forum on indigenous issues (UNPFII) made several recommendations relating to UNESCO, its World Heritage Committee and the advisory bodies ICOMOS, ICCROM and IUCN. At the 34th (Brasilia, 2010), 35th (UNESCO, 2011) and 36th (St Petersburg, 2012) sessions of the World Heritage Committee, representatives of the UN Permanent Forum were present as observers ...
The project ‘Protection, Preservation and Prosperity: Stories of World Heritage,’ is being launched today by UNESCO and the Smithsonian Institution to celebrate the World Heritage Convention. Using mobile phone technology to reach the wider public, the project focuses on 10 World Heritage sites which embody, in particular, the role of local communities in World Heritage ...
In light of escalated violence in the vicinity of several historic urban areas in Syria, the Director-General reiterates her appeal of 30 March 2012, to all parties involved in the conflict to protect all Syrian cultural heritage. UNESCO is particularly alarmed over reports of heavy fighting in Aleppo, which ancient city is a World Heritage site. Strategically positioned on historic trade ...
Echoing the call of UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, the World Heritage Committee has established a Special Fund to support Mali’s efforts to safeguard the World Heritage properties affected by the armed conflict in the north of the country, notably the sites of Timbuktu and the Tomb of Askia in Gao. The Fund will support the Government of Mali in assessing damage at the sites, ...
On June 24, a group of armed rebels attacked the headquarters of the Okapi Wildlife Reserve, situated in the north-east of the Democratic Republic of Congo, killing seven park staff- and their family members. Others were taken hostage or are unaccounted for. The entire Reserve infrastructure was destroyed and the 15 okapi of the Epulu Breeding and Research Station were all killed. Epulu plays ...
The record of the "International Expert Meeting on the 40th Anniversary" which was held on 16 February 2012 is now available on the Japan ICOMOS website in English and Japanese. http://www.japan-icomos.org/news.html
The World Heritage Centre and the French Marine Protected Area Agency (AAMP) signed a Memorandum of Understanding in support of the conservation of marine World Heritage sites. The World Heritage Centre and  AAMP have cooperated informally over the past years, in particular on efforts for the conservation marine World Heritage in the Indian Ocean and strengthening the World Heritage ...
The World Heritage Committee Friday closed its 36th session after almost two weeks of work under the chair of Eleonora Mitrofanova, the Ambassador of Russia to UNESCO. The Committee added 26 new sites to UNESCO’s World Heritage List during the session.  It marked the 40th anniversary of the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. The new ...
UNESCO and the nongovernmental organization Fauna and Flora International are launching an emergency appeal to support the staff and rebuild the headquarters of the Okapi Wildlife Reserve in Epulu, a small village in the northeast of the Democratic Republic of the Congo.  On 24 June, poachers armed with AK47 rifles attacked the facility and killed seven people, including two ...
The World Heritage Thematic Programme, Human Evolution: Adaptations, Dispersals and Social Developments (HEADS) http://whc.unesco.org/en/heads/, collaborated with the UNESCO Science Sector in the organization of the 21st International Radiocarbon Conference, held from 9 to 13 July 2012, at UNESCO Headquarters. Nuria Sanz, General Coordinator of the HEADS Programme at the World Heritage ...
After a three-day expert meeting held in Italy and ending on 20 June 2012, participants concluded that there is further potential for European beech forests as World Natural Heritage.   The workshop was held in the context of the existing site “Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and The Ancient Beech Forests of Germany”, and demonstrated how World Heritage was ...
The World Heritage Committee on 2 July condemned the destruction of World Heritage sites in Mali and decided on measures to help the country protect its heritage. In its decision, the 21-member Committee responsible for implementing the World Heritage Convention, called on the Director-General of UNESCO to create a special fund to help Mali in the conservation of its cultural heritage. The ...
The World Heritage Committee on Monday morning inscribed Lena Pillars Nature Park of the Russian Federation, the last site to be added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List during this year’s session. Chad, Congo, Palau and Palestine had World Heritage sites inscribed on the List for the first time. Lena Pillars Nature Park is marked by spectacular rock pillars that reach a height of ...
The World Heritage Committee on Sunday inscribed eight new sites on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, including Chad’s first World Heritage property. Inscriptions will continue tomorrow Monday. The new sites are: Major Mining Sites of Walonia (Belgium): The four sites of the property form a strip that is 170km long by 3 to 15 km, crossing Belgium from east to west. It consists of the ...
Pearling, testimony of an island economy (Bahrain) and the Masjed-e Jāmé of Isfahan (Iran) were inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, Saturday morning. The World Heritage Committee, the independent 21-member responsible for the World Heritage Convention, will continue examining sites nominated for inscriptions during its afternoon session and tomorrow. Pearling, testimony ...
The World Heritage Committee on Saturday afternoon added the following sites to UNESCO’s World Heritage List: Gonbad-e Qābus (Iran), Archaelogical Heritage of the Lenggong Valley (Malaysia), The Landscape of Grand Pré (Canada); Heritage of Mercury (Almadén and Idrija (Slovenia/Spain); Margravial Opera House Bayreuth (Germany); Garrison Border Town of Elvas and its ...
UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova today expressed her distress and dismay over the destruction of three sacred tombs that are part of a World Heritage site in Timbuktu, Mali. Ms Bokova called on the belligerents to cease the destruction immediately. “Reports that the Mausoleums of Sidi Mahmoud,  Sidi Moctar and Alpha Moya have been destroyed is extremely distressing,” the ...
The World Heritage Centre received a letter today from the Government of Mexico’s National Commission for Natural Protected Areas formally advising it that the government had withdrawn all approvals for the development of a very large tourism development application located near Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park (CPNP). CPNP is a component of the large Islands and Protected Areas of ...
New sites have been inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List: Birthplace of Jesus: the Church of the Nativity and the Pilgrimage Route, Bethlehem (Palestine); Site of Human Evolution at Mount Carmel: The Nahal Me’arot/Wadi el-Mughara Caves (Israel), Rock Islands Southern Lagoon (Palau), and The Cultural Landscape of Bali: the Subak System as a Manifestation of the Tri Hita ...
The Site of Xanadu (China), the Bassari Country: Bassari and Bedik Cultural Landscapes (Senegal) and the Historic Town Grand Bassam, the first capital of Côte d’Ivoire have been added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List. North of the Great Wall, the  Site of Xanadu  encompasses the remains of Kublai Khan’s legendary capital city, designed by the Mongol ...
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, expressed her utmost concern with the recent fighting in eastern Democratic Republic of Congo, which is affecting several World Heritage sites. On Sunday June 24, a group of armed rebels attacked the headquarters of the Okapi Wildlife Reserve, killing at least 7 park staff. Others were taken hostage by the rebels or are still unaccounted for. All ...
The World Heritage Committee on Thursday accepted the request of the government of Mali to place Timbuktu and the Tomb of Askia on UNESCO’s List of World Heritage in Danger. The decision aims to raise cooperation and support for the sites threatened by the armed conflict in the region. The Committee, meeting in St Petersburg until 6 July, also asked Mali’s neighbours to do all in ...
The World Heritage Committee on Tuesday morning recognized the success of two countries, Pakistan and the Philippines, in improving the conservation of sites that had been inscribed on the List of World Heritage in Danger: Fort and Shalamar Gardens in Lahore (Pakistan) and the Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras (Philippines). Successful measures have been taken to remove the threat ...
Environmental factors, lack of maintenance and uncontrollable urban developments have been cited as reasons to inscribe the Fortifications on the Caribbean Side of Panama: Portobelo-San Lorenzo on UNESCO’s List of World Heritage in Danger. The site, comprising a group of fortifications, is a magnificent example of 17th- and 18th-century military architecture built on Panama’s ...
The World Heritage Committee has placed Liverpool Maritime Mercantile City on the List of World Heritage in Danger due to the proposed construction of Liverpool Waters, a massive redevelopment of the historic docklands north of the city centre. The Committee contended that the development will extend the city centre significantly and alter the skyline and profile of the site inscribed on the ...
Of the 33 sites nominated this year, which ones will make the cut to achieve UNESCO World Heritage status? The first day of the World Heritage Committee session began this morning, from the historic 18th century Tauride Palace (also known as “Tavrichesky” Palace) in St Petersburg, Russia. Delegations from the 21 States Parties will decide, by July 6, which sites will be added to ...
The challenges facing heritage preservation as UNESCO celebrates the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention were the focus of the opening of the 36th session of the World Heritage Committee. The session started Sunday in St Petersburg and will continue until 6 July. The Chairperson of the World Heritage Committee, Eleonora Valentinovna Mitrofanova, welcomed the participants ...
The Youth Model of the World Heritage Committee, to be held in Kazan from 1 to 9 July, is designed to attract the attention of young people of the States Parties to the World Heritage Convention to the problem of preservating natural and cultural heritage and to raise awareness  of youth activities related to the Convention, its role and its international importance as well as procedures ...
On 11 June, a protocol agreement for a preservation and management project for Historic Cairo (Egypt) was signed by Mr. Samir Gharib, Head of the National Organization for Urban Harmony (NOUH), and Dr. Tarek Shawky, Head of the UNESCO Cairo office, on behalf of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Attendees included H.E Mohammed Ibrahim, Minister of State for Antiquities, H.E Mohammed Saber ...
Participants to the 4th annual World Heritage Centre / Earthwatch / Shell "Business Planning for natural World Heritage site managers" year long training programme have just been informed of their successful candidacies.    In October 2012, 18 World Heritage site staff from 6 sites in Africa will travel to the Mpala Research Centre  in the shadow of Mount Kenya World ...
Since its inception in 2001, the Netherlands Funds-in-Trust (NFiT) at the World Heritage Centre has served the international heritage community as well as local communities in practically all regions of the world in pursuing the safeguarding and sustainable development of the World Heritage, both natural and cultural.  The agreement between the Dutch Government and UNESCO has enabled a ...
Following the earthquakes that struck the region of Emilia in northern Italy, notably since May 20, the UNESCO Director General Irina Bokova dispatched an urgent technical mission with the objective of assessing the overall situation at the affected World Heritage properties. The mission also aimed to evaluate the current risks related to the evolution of the seismic phenomenon ...
The Consultative Meeting on World Heritage and Sustainable Development, held in Ouro Preto, Brazil from 5 to 8 February, was a contribution to the celebration the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention. In the first session, all speakers stressed the need to redefine the paradigm of this important topic in the face of growing inequalities and global challenges. This ...
In celebration of World Oceans Day, the World Heritage Centre is launching an iPhone app. This years’ Oceans Day theme “Youth: the Next Wave for Change” inspired the World Heritage Centre to go mobile. Of the 6,000 marine protected areas on the planet, only 45 are inscribed on the World Heritage List, the highest internationally recognized status for conservation. The ...
The UNESCO World Heritage Centre would like to express its sincere condolences to the friends and family of Professor Philip Vallentine Tobias, who passed away on Thursday, 7 June 2012 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Professor Tobias, born on 14 October 1925, was an exceptional paleoanthropologist and an inspiration to generations of students. He was internationally renowned for his commitment ...
As requested by Director-General Irina Bokova, a team of experts has traveled to northern Italy to assess damage to World Heritage sites following recent earthquakes. On 20 May 2012 a powerful earthquake hit the region of Emilia Romagna, in the north of Italy, followed by numerous aftershocks. This caused considerable damage to several important historic buildings. The three World Heritage ...
The World Heritage Committee will consider the inscription of 36 sites on the World Heritage List during its next meeting from 24 June to 6 July, in Saint Petersburg, Russian Federation. The forthcoming 36 th session of the Committee , an independent body of 21 States Parties to the 1972 World Heritage Convention , will be chaired by. Eleonora Mitrofanova, Ambassador Permanent Delegate ...
The World Heritage Inventory of Earthen Architecture  is now available in English and French online: http://whc.unesco.org/en/earthen-architecture/ (see documents 2 and 3). In 2008, the World Heritage Programme on Earthen architecture (WHEAP) was launched as an initiative to address pressing concerns through the development of policies for the conservation, revitalisation and ...
The Government of Mali and UNESCO have defined measures to safeguard World Heritage Properties in the north of Mali, including the fabled city of Timbuktu, following reports of wilful damage to mausoleums in the World Heritage site. UNESCO’s Assistant Director-General for Africa, Lalla Aicha Ben Barka, travelled to Bamako (18 – 20 May) and met senior government officials ...
The Rivers and Heritage website was officially launched on 15 March 2012 at the World Water Forum in Marseille (France), during the session “Water Culture in local governance” organized by the AIMF in partnership with l'Académie de l'Eau and UNESCO in the framework of the France-UNESCO Convention. The site lies within the framework of the Rivers and Heritage, conducted ...
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today called for the protection of Libya’s Old City of Ghadamès inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 1986. “I am deeply concerned by information that the Libyan city of Ghadamès has been the target of rocket attacks,” the Director-General said. “I call upon all those involved to refrain from ...
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today extended her condolences to the inhabitants of northern Italy for the loss of human life and suffering caused by the earthquake that shook the region on May 20. The Director-General also said that UNESCO is sending a mission to assess damage to World Heritage sites and other cultural heritage in northern Italy.  “While initial reports from ...
The conference Living with World Heritage, held in Røros, Norway from 13 to 16 May 2012, was part of Norway`s official contribution to the celebration of the World Heritage Convention`s 40th anniversary. Almost 140 persons from 28 countries participated. The themes of the conference were sustainable development and the role of local communities, with a primary ...
On 7 May 2012, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and H.E. Ms Katalin Bogyay, Ambassador of Hungary and President of UNESCO's General Conference, signed the new Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape adopted by the General conference on 10 November 2011. The Recommendation was adopted by acclamation, the first such instrument on the historic environment issued by UNESCO in 35 ...
UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova expressed her great concern following the desecration of the graves of Sidi Mahmoud in Mali by the Ansar Dine group on 4 May 2012. According to information UNESCO received, the front door of the mausoleum and its protective curtain have been burned and the people of Timbuktu who gather there every Friday for prayer were prevented from accessing it. "This ...
The World Heritage property “Frontiers of the Roman Empire” has received £537,185 (US$ 850,406) in funding from SITA Trust to underwrite a conservation project that will restore dilapidated portions of the site located in the United Kingdom. The project will be administered by Hadrian’s Wall Heritage. Originally inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1987 as ...
Members of the Coordinating Committee on the Serial World Heritage Nomination of the Silk Roads release recommendations for two priority transnational heritage corridors of Silk Roads Serial and Transnational Nomination Following their meeting in Tashkent, a group of 30 experts from 5 Central Asian countries and China as well as international experts from UK, Japan and Belgium, today ...
Sydney Opera House was among the World Heritage sites around the globe participating in Earth Hour 2012, the environmental campaign to draw attention to the effects of climate change through turning off the lights for one hour, from 8.30 to 9.30pm on 31 March 2012. To see a list of the participating ...
In reaction to recent events in Northern Mali, UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova expresses her deep concern about the possible consequences of the ongoing armed conflict on the invaluable cultural World Heritage property located in Timbuktu and Gao. The recent takeover of these cities by the Tuareg rebels could have damaging effects on the management and conservation of the three mosques ...
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, today called for the protection of the cultural heritage of Syria. ‘Following a number of media reports that Syria’s cultural heritage is threatened by the current conflict, I wish to express my grave concern about possible damage to precious sites and to call upon all those involved in the conflict to ensure the protection of ...
Archaeological discoveries
Friday, 30 March 2012
In the sacred place of Tenochtitlan, archaeologists from INAH-Conaculta (The Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History and the Mexican National Council for Culture and the Arts), have found 23 tombstones over 550 years old, with etched images of snakes, prisoners, ornaments and warriors, which, as a whole, appears to depict the story alluding to the birth of Huitzilopochtli and ...
The International World Heritage Expert Meeting on Criterion (vi)  and associative values which took place in Warsaw, Poland, 28-30 March 2012, adopted its recommendations at a closing session today. The conclusions and recommendations will be presented to the 36th session of the World Heritage Committee in Saint Petersburg  June 2012. The meeting appreciated the support of the ...
UNESCO Director-General, Irina Bokova underlined the importance of better integrating cultural heritage preservation and sustainable tourism during the Roundtable on World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism, held in Miami on 19 March. She highlighted that cultural heritage is a powerful driver of social and economic development for local communities. Also participating in this Roundtable were ...
World Heritage and literacy were bookends to a day where Philadelphia opened its arms to UNESCO, during the second day of Director-General Irina Bokova’s visit to the United States on Thursday.Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar joined the Director-General to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention at morning ceremonies held at Independence Hall, where in 1776 ...
With a stunning visit to the Everglades the day before serving as a strong reminder, Director-General Irina Bokova turned her attention to a private-public sector roundtable on World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism in Miami on Monday. Joining a panel of local leaders in the tourism industry and conservation, the Director-General highlighted the importance of better integrating cultural ...
UNESCO will partner with World Wildlife Fund (WWF) for Earth Hour, one of the world's largest and most well-known environmental campaigns in the world. UNESCO has invited World Heritage sites to participate in this initiative by switching off the lights on the night of Earth Hour: Saturday, 31 March 2012, from 8:30 to 9:30pm local time. The lights will also be switched off at UNESCO ...
IUCN and UNEP-WCMC have compiled a KML layer with key information on the natural and mixed World Heritage sites inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List as of 1 January 2012. The information comes from the latest version of the World Database on Protected Areas (WDPA). The WDPA is a joint project of the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and IUCN, maintained at the UNEP World ...
From 12-15 March 2012, the Swiss luxury watch manufacturer Jaeger-LeCoultre, partner of UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre since 2008, organized its fourth online auction for the benefit of World Heritage marine sites. This year, the Manufacture auctioned a new water-resistant watch inspired by the Memovox Deep Sea: Prototype N° 1 of the Jaeger-LeCoultre Deep Sea Vintage ...
On January 15th, forest fires were spotted on the slopes of Mount Kenya, the highest mountain in Africa.  Inscribed onto the World Heritage list in 1997, Mount Kenya is a critical refuge for a host of iconic species, ranging from the African elephant, the leopard, and a variety of antelopes and rare birds.  The mountain is also referred to as Kenya’s water tower, as it ...
The World Heritage Centre took part in a Conference organized by the UN International Strategy for Disaster Reduction (UN-ISDR) and the Municipality of Venice on "Building Cities Resilience to Disasters in Europe: Protecting Cultural Heritage and Adapting to Climate Change" (Venice, 19-20 March 2012). Part of the international campaign called "Making my City Resilient - My City is Getting ...
To contribute to the 2012 celebration of the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention, the Cultural Heritage Administration of the Republic of Korea (CHA) and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC) recently launched the World Heritage Youth Storyboard Competition at the national level. Adapting the theme of the 40th anniversary on the role of local ...
Professor Herb Stovel, one of the world’s most renowned experts in heritage conservation, recently passed away in Ottawa, Canada. During his long career, Professor Stovel made an outstanding contribution to heritage conservation and to the World Heritage Convention in particular. As a scholar and a teacher of exceptional intellectual curiosity and rigour, he has had a huge impact on ...
The National Park Service of the United States of America is celebrating the World Heritage Convention with events throughout the year. For more information, there is an interactive website: http://www.nps.gov/oia/topics/worldheritage/World_Heritage_Anniversary.htm 
The World Heritage Centre has just been informed that a Ministerial Order, signed on 1 September 2011, delivers to SOCO (South Africa Congo Oil) a Certificate of Environmental Acceptability in order to exercise an oil exploration campaign by the acquisition of aeromagnetic and aerogravimetric data in block V of the Albertine Rift (Virunga National Park), Democratic Republic of Congo ...
Dr. Sami El-Masri, Deputy Director General for Arts, Culture and Heritage, Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority, with the Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, Mr Kishore Rao, opened today the International Expert Meeting on Integrity for Cultural Heritage. The meeting is held from 12 to 14 March 2012, in Al Ain and is hosted by the United Arab Emirates in collaboration with the ...
Aztec Ruins, a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1987 as part of the Chaco Culture designation,  celebrated  the 25th anniversary of its inscription on February 24 2012, joining the celebration of the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention.  More information about the event, organized in collaboration with the National Parks Service (NPS), can be found in the ...
On 6 March 2012, Liverpool City Council’s Planning Committee granted outline planning permission for the Peel Holdings £5.5bn Liverpool Waters scheme. The permission is subject to the signing of a legal agreement and has to be referred to the Government which will decide whether a public inquiry will be held. Experts from UNESCO's World Heritage Centre and from the International ...
On 12 August 2011, the Government of Brunei Darassalam and on 8 December 2011, the Government of Palestine officially deposited with the Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, their instruments of ratification, becoming the 188th and 189th State Parties to adopt the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. The World Heritage Convention entered into ...
Women in Mali have developed over the last decades specific skills in terms of textile dyeing. This activity provides many employment opportunities for women, as their production is being exported all throughout the sub-region. However, since chemical dyeing products are being used and polluted waste water released in water drainage canals or in the Niger River, this activity entails water ...
In March 2012, the Cultural Heritage Administration of the Republic of Korea (CHA) and the UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC)  launched the Patrimonito National Storyboard Competition, Republic of Korea. Of the 143 student submissions, 10 of the storyboards were selected by the Korean Cultural Heritage Administration and were then sent to the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, ...
Thanks to Quindío being declared as part of the UNESCO World Heritage property, Coffee Cultural Landscape (Colombia), the exploration of hydrocarbons in this area has been stopped by order of the Council of State. The decree was issued less than eight days ago and demands the suspension of all exploration by the National Agency of Hydrocarbons and the Drilling 2010 consortium in the ...
Takuya Okada, Chairman of the AEON Environmental Foundation and Honorary Chairman of AEON Co., Ltd., announced today the opening of nominations for the MIDORI Prize for Biodiversity. The MIDORI Prize is a biennial international prize, established by the AEON Environmental Foundation, in 2010, during the International Year of Biodiversity, that honours individuals who have made outstanding ...
A joint international expert mission to the World Heritage property of Great Barrier Reef by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre (WHC), and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) is taking place from 5 to 14 March 2012. The World Heritage Committee, at its 35th session in June 2011 (Paris) examined the state of conservation of Great Barrier Reef (Australia), inscribed on the ...
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, two young Indian men, Aniketh MJ and Sulesh Kumar, are planning to visit India’s 28 World Heritage sites over a span of 3 months starting March 5th, 2012, travelling mainly by bus and train. With this trip they would like to create a bond between the current generation of Indians and the wonderful ...
UNESCO and Collins are delighted to announce the publication of The World’s Heritage (2nd Edition) – the definitive, best-selling guide to all 936 UNESCO World Heritage sites. This is the first book to describe all the sites on the List fully, including the most recent additions to the List in 2011. Only the world's most spectacular and extraordinary sites make it onto UNESCO's ...
To mark the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the UNESCOWorld Heritage Convention, Dentsu, EVERGREEN Digital Contents and NTT DOCOMO, in collaboration with the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, have launched a special cartoon film featuring the friendship between “Patrimonito”, the mascot of the World Heritage Education programme, and “Docomodake”, the mascot of NTT ...
Expert Working Group meeting held in Tokyo, releases recommendations for Safeguarding World Heritage property of the Bamiyan Valley, Afghanistan Following their meeting in UNESCO Headquarters in March 2011, a group of Afghan and international experts working on the safeguarding of Bamiyan (Afghanistan), as well as representatives of the Afghan and Japanese governments and UNESCO,  have ...
Heritage Heals in Hiraizumi
Monday, 13 February 2012
It is rare for a Director-General to present a certificate of World Heritage in person, but the temples, gardens and archaeological site of Hiraizumi, inscribed on the List in 2011, marked an exception. Located in north-east Japan, the 12th-century site, representing the Buddhist Pure Land gained its world heritage status three months after the earthquake and tsunami devastated the ...
Panasonic Corporation held yesterday, 8 February, the award ceremony of "Eco Picture Diary Global Contest" which the company has been promoting with the aim to raise awareness of environmental issues and eco actions for the young generation, with the final nomination of national finalists attending the ceremony at UNESCO headquarters. The "Eco-Picture Diary Contest" is a program developed ...
The Retezat Massif has received a Rapid Response Facility (RRF) grant to undertake urgent snow-tracking surveys in response to a road-building threat through the Carpathian Mountains. This protected area is on Romania’s World Heritage tentative list, and is known for its plant diversity, endemism and rich fauna, including the Eurasian eagle-owl, the gray wolf and the brown bear. The ...
The Director-General of UNESCO, Irina Bokova, launched the 40th anniversary celebration of the World Heritage Convention in a ceremony at UNESCO Headquarters on 30 January. It was the first of a series of events States Parties to the 1972 Convention are organizing around the world over the coming year, and ending with a final event in November 2012 in Kyoto, Japan. The launch featured a ...
World Heritage Convention turns forty
Monday, 30 January 2012
This year marks the 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention, one of UNESCO's most successful programmes and one of the most powerful tools for heritage preservation. Almost universally adopted, with 188 signatory countries, the Convention is unique in that it combines the protection of cultural and natural heritage in one instrument. Since its adoption by the General Conference of ...
On November 16, 1972, the international community took a historic step towards safeguarding core, irreplaceable elements of our global heritage when the General Conference of UNESCO adopted the World Heritage Convention. Since then, more than 188 countries have ratified the Convention, and more than 936 separate sites around the world have been designated as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. As ...
From 7 to 9 November 2011, experts from the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) undertook an advisory mission to examine development projects affecting the World Heritage site "Cathedral, Alcázar and Archivo de Indias in Sevilla", inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1987. At its three last sessions, the World Heritage Committee discussed the state of ...
The Côte d’Ivoire component of the transboundary Mount Nimba Strict Nature Reserve, inscribed onto the list of World Heritage in Danger, has been awarded a Rapid Response Facility (RRF) small grant to help re-establish the presence of the protected area authority.  Recent civil strife in this country had led to the abandonment of site management offices in the area.  The ...
The UNESCO World Heritage Centre and Panasonic have released an online version of the 2012 World Heritage Calendar in five languages. It is available as a website, or as a downloadable stand-alone application or wallpaper. As the year 2012 is the 40th anniversary of the adoption of the World Heritage Convention, the calendar is expected to raise even more interest than the very popular 2011 ...
Read our newsletter to learn about our major accomplishments, including new services that will help improve marine protection efforts around the globe. Additionally, this year we celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention. Mission of the World Heritage Marine Programme Launched in 2005, the mission of the World Heritage Marine Programme is to establish effective ...
Best Wishes 2012
Friday, 23 December 2011
40 years of protection, 188 States Parties, 936 World Heritage Sites. Join us for the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention as we highlight the role of local communitites in sustainable development. //
World Heritage Volunteers 2012
Tuesday, 20 December 2011
Call for Projects concrete actions for the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention The UNESCO World Heritage Education Programme in collaboration with the Coordinating Committee for International Voluntary Service (CCIVS) is pleased to announce the call for projects for the World Heritage Volunteers 2012.After 4 years of fruitful experiences with 78 successful projects at 43 sites, ...
Kernavė Archaeological Site (Cultural Reserve of Kernavė) World Heritage site has been given "enhanced protection" status by the Committee for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, which held its sixth meeting at UNESCO Headquarters from 14 to 16 December. The status had also been requested for two World Heritage sites in Azerbaijan: Walled City of Baku with the ...
While exact details of the route are still under cover, it has been announced that the Olympic Torch will be carried through Ironbridge Gorge World Heritage site (United Kingdom). The torch will be carried over the iron bridge which has stood for hundreds of years as a symbol of the Industrial Revolution and will then be carried along the River Severn before travelling on to Telford. The ...
The Government of Italy has granted 400,000€ to support a new UNESCO project to build capacity for safeguarding cultural heritage in Myanmar. The contribution will allow UNESCO to mobilize international expertise to assist Myanmar in protecting important heritage sites in the country, in particular, the ancient Pyu settlements dating back almost two millennia and Bagan, one of the ...
Since Palestine was admitted to UNESCO on 31 October, there have been several misleading media reports about the status of Palestinian cultural heritage sites.  Here is how UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee works and what it has done with respect to cultural sites in Palestine. The World Heritage Committee inscribes sites it considers to be of “outstanding universal value.” Nominations must ...
The two-year partnership signed between Panasonic and the World Heritage Centre in June 2011 aims to promote sustainable development and increase environmental awareness. In addition to the World Heritage Eco Learning Programme dedicated to teaching the next generation about the importance of heritage preservation using 3D-related audiovisual equipment and technical support, site visits and ...
Midway through a discussion on risk analysis, someone jumps to their feet and shouts “ELEPHANTS!!” and within a matter of seconds the classroom is deserted. For the next few minutes, the participants in Earthwatch’s Business Skills for World Heritage programme can be found lined up along Mpala Research Centre’s electric fence watching the herd pass on the far side of the river. The ...
UNESCO and Italy have agreed to collaborate on the restoration of the Archaeological Areas of Pompeii, Herculaneum and Torre Annunziata, inscribed on UNESCO's World Heritage List in 1997. International attention turned to the World Heritage site in late 2010, when torrential rains led to the collapse of several vestiges including the Schola Armaturarum (Gladiators' House) and the equally ...
Leading lights in science, technology, conservation and heritage interpretation descended upon Edinburgh on 23 November 2011 for a unique conference on how new technology could help protect fragile landscapes while giving greater public access to them. ‘I Know Where I'm Going: Remote Access to World Heritage Sites from St Kilda to Uluru’ was held from 23 to 24 November, with a keynote speech ...
To launch the 40th anniversary celebrations of the World Heritage Convention, UNESCO offered the World Heritage iPhone/iPad application (app) free for one day. On Wednesday, 16 November the app was downloaded 13,343 times from the Apple iTunes store. It proved to be most popular in France, the United States and China. An update of the App, which now features the 25 new sites added to the ...
On 16 November 2011, Kishore Rao, Director of the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, presented a certificate to German Minister for Environment Norbert Röttgen and the State Ministers recognizing the inscription of the Primeval Beech Forests of the Carpathians and the Ancient Beech Forests of Germany on the World Heritage List. The ceremony was held in Berlin, Germany and included representatives ...
The World Heritage Centre is pleased to announce the publication of the World Heritage Paper #30:  “Adapting to Change – The State of Conservation of World Heritage Forests in 2011” as a contribution to the 2011 United Nations International Year of Forests. There are 104 World Heritage sites that have been recognized at least in part for their forest values.   These range from the 20 hectare ...
In June 2011 UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre and Turismo de Portugal, the Portuguese Tourism Authority, signed an agreement engaging in a cooperation project on capacity-building for tourism management in World Heritage sites of Portuguese origin. This project is an integral part of the continuous cooperation that is being carried out by the World Heritage Centre and Portugal, ...
A contribution of the G-77 & China in honor of the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention, in collaboration with UNESCO, the photo exhibit "The G-77 & China at UNESCO celebrates the 40th Anniversary of the World Heritage Convention" was launched at UNESCO today as the first event marking the anniversary year. It will be on display from 7 to 10 November 2011 at UNESCO ...
2011-2012 World Heritage Map Available
Monday, 7 November 2011
The latest version of the World Heritage map, produced by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and National Geographic Maps with the generous support of Russian Federation, can now be ordered for a modest fee from the World Heritage Centre website. The featured image on the Map presents Saint Petersburg, where the next session of the World Heritage Committee will be held (June/July 2012). The ...
The Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova today launched the 40th anniversary celebrations for the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by UNESCO's Member States on 16 November 1972. In her address, the Director-General called for a year of renewal for World Heritage. "Heritage stands at the crossroads of climate change, social ...
Nine new members were elected to the World Heritage Committee on the first day of the 18th General Assembly of States Parties to the World Heritage Convention, which started its meeting today at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France. The new members of the Committee are Algeria, Colombia, Germany, India, Japan, Malaysia, Qatar, Senegal and Serbia. Each country will serve a mandate of four ...
One of the largest restoration projects in the history of the United States is underway at Olympic National Park World Heritage site in Washington. Begun in September 2010, the removal of the Elwha and Glines Canyon dams on the Elwha River will result in salmon populations swelling from 3,000 to more than 300,000 as all five species of Pacific salmon return to more than 70 ...
UNESCO is monitoring with concern the situation in the Pitons, cirques and remparts of Reunion Island, World Heritage site where fires have been raging since 25 October. According to early reports from the French Indian Ocean island of Reunion, at least 3,000 ha of the 100,000 ha property have been destroyed by the fires. Twenty-six endemic rare plant species are already known to have been ...
On 10 August 2011 the Japanese Government approved the programme proposal "Capacity Building to Support the Conservation of World Heritage Sites and Enhance Sustainable Development of Local Communities in Small island Developing States (SIDS)", with a total budget of USD 1 million. The overall objective of the project proposal is to develop regional capacity building programmes for Pacific ...
The UNESCO World Heritage Centre would like to express its condolences for the lives lost in northern Italy last week in the floods and mudslides resulting from torrential rains. Villages as well as road and railway communication lines of the Cinque Terre World Heritage site have been severely affected by the rains, and the Centre is working with the national and local authorities to ...
UNESCO has invited experts from both inside and outside of Libya to urgently examine the preservation of cultural heritage in the country, notably measures to safeguard cultural sites; prevent illicit trafficking, protect museums and strengthen cultural institutions in the wake of civil strife and the overthrow of the Gaddafi regime. The meeting - the first on protecting Libyan cultural ...
The UNESCO World Heritage Centre participated in a round table on “Attractiveness of regional assets: The creation and regionalization of added value” at the world’s first international forum of Purple Economy held in Paris, France, 11-13 October 2011 together with Carlo Petrini (Founder and President of Slow Food) and Daniel Maximin (Commissioner of the French Year on ...
Flooding in Thailand
Friday, 14 October 2011
Severe flooding in Thailand since mid July has this week inundated the World Heritage property of the Historic City of Ayutthaya, founded in ca. 1350 as the second capital of the Kingdom of Siam after Sukhothai. Located on an island on the Chao Praya river, the protective embankments could no longer withstand the increasing height of the floods. UNESCO Bangkok Office and the World Heritage ...
Fauna and Flora International (FFI) a longtime partner of UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre, launched a global appeal this week with the objective of helping protect over 50,000 hectares of the globally unique “fynbos” ecosystem in the Cape Floral region of South Africa.The targeted lands are in the World Heritage site’s buffer areas, contributing to the long term ...
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