Cathegory 2 Centres LAC

The Category 2 Centres for World Heritage were created in order to assist and support the States Parties of the three LAC sub-regions to implement the 1972 World Heritage Convention. Two centres have been created with this purpose: the Rio de Janeiro Centre for the South American sub-region and the Zacatecas Centre for Mexico, Central America and the Caribbean.

Rio de Janeiro Centre

The Rio de Janeiro Centre was created to support and assist Spanish and Portuguese-speaking countries in South America, Africa and Asia. Its programmes and activities focus on training and the dissemination of best practices in the heritage management area based on the universal message of the Convention for the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 1972 as its main reference point.

The Centre's mission is to promote training and research activities to contribute to the implementation of the 1972 World Heritage Convention. The Centre will provide assistance to countries in the Region for the creation or strengthening of national capacities in the field of heritage management and to allow other direct stakeholders to participate in initiatives related to heritage.

Main Objectives

  • Contribute to achieving United Nations Millennium Development Goals;
  • Build capacity for heritage management in the Region;
  • Act as a reference centre for education, research and training and a platform for networking and skills in the field of heritage through projects, programmes and courses;
  • Develop a knowledge base on conservation, preservation, management, supervision, theoretical and applied research and education in the field of heritage;
  • Contribute to methodology developments for the conservation, preservation and management of heritage;
  • Promote and enable a global network of institutions and organizations concerned with education and research with a view to identifying substantiated solutions to problems facing heritage management;
  • Promote entrepreneurship in a university context.
  • Sharing specialist expertise with UNESCO, in particular with the World Heritage Centre, and cooperating with UNESCO's intergovernmental committees in the field of heritage, as well as other institutions.

In order to facilitate discussion and collaboration for the development and monitoring of programmes, discussion groups have been created for both centres (limited access to members).

Zacatecas Centre

The Category 2 Centre at Zacatecas was created with a view to assisting Mexico and the Member States of Central America and the Caribbean to implement the 1972 World Heritage Convention.

It will comply with the relevant provisions of the Operational Guidelines, including those relating to the Global Strategy for a representative, balanced and credible World Heritage List (Paragraph 55), with an emphasis placed on the importance of regional studies and initiatives, and the need to support the process of regular reporting in order to "create a mechanism for regional cooperation and exchange of information and experience among States  Parties on the implementation of the Convention and the conservation of World Heritage" (Paragraph 201). Another objective of the Zacatecas Centre will be contributing to the application of a International Training Strategy on World Cultural and Natural Heritage (Helsinki, 2001), which the World Heritage Committee believes is one of the main ways of achieving the strategic objective of "capacity-building" adopted in the 26th meeting of the Committee, held in Budapest in 2002.

Main Objectives

Help to strengthen capacity-building for the implementation of the World Heritage Convention in the Region;

  • Contribute to the strengthening of international cooperation, especially among Member States of the Region;
  • Contribute to sustainable development through sound management of natural and cultural heritage;
  • Promote research on cultural and natural heritage, in particular for the properties inscribed on the World Heritage List.
  • Contribute to the creation and dissemination of information through the establishment of a documentation centre dealing with the properties on the World Heritage List in the Region;
  • Share specialist expertise with UNESCO, in particular with the World Heritage Centre, and cooperate with Secretariats of other UNESCO cultural conventions related to heritage.