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World Heritage: Exploring the Issues

The 30th anniversary Congress of the World Heritage Convention will be preceded by a series of workshops across Italy on November 11-12 to discuss specific aspects of implementing the Convention and associated issues. The themes and locations for these workshops are as follows:

The Legal Tools for World Heritage Conservation
Santa Maria della Scala, Siena

This workshop brings together leading international law academics and experts in both environmental and cultural heritage law. It aims to assess the scope and effectiveness of the World Heritage Convention on the occasion of its 30th anniversary and to identify the opportunities for future strengthening of this instrument. Discussions will focus on the concept of common heritage of humankind and the international responsibilities deriving from the World Heritage Convention as well as on national legislation and judicial decisions concerning World Heritage.

Cultural Landscapes: The Challenges of Conservation
Castello Estense, Ferrara

The workshop aims to take stock of 10 years of the cultural landscape concept in the framework of the World Heritage Convention. At the same time, based on a regional review of progress achieved, case studies of landscape preservation activities carried out at existing and potential World Heritage sites will be assessed. Discussions will focus on how the Convention can have a catalytic effect in promoting sustainable development and long-term survival of cultural landscapes in all parts of the world, as well as providing model cases of landscape protection and conservation strategies.

Towards Innovative Partnerships for World Heritage
Palazzo Zorzi, Venice

To prepare the reflection on how to develop and strengthen partnerships for conservation of natural and cultural heritage in the coming decades, this workshop will aim to consult the private sector and civil society on existing and new models of cooperation for long-term conservation of World Heritage. Following an in-depth introduction on the World Heritage mission and the role of the private sector in achieving these objectives, participants will be invited to discuss the establishment of a framework for sustainable World Heritage Partnerships.

Partnerships for the Conservation of World Heritage Cities
Urbino - Pesaro

The workshop aims to bring together professionals in urban planning, management and conservation to examine case studies of interventions and operational activities carried out in co-operation with UNESCO in World Heritage Cities. Discussions will focus on how the World Heritage Convention can have a catalytic effect in promoting sustainable urban development of living historic cities. The workshop will address the complex issues of urban conservation and governance taking into account the social and economic development needs of historic cities to ensure their function as modern human settlements.

Monitoring World Heritage
Palazzo Leoni Montanari, Vicenza

The main purpose of this workshop is to strengthen the appreciation and appropriate use of monitoring in the effective management of heritage properties of cultural and natural value. Monitoring is a necessary part of the sound management of all heritage sites. It can provide information to allow management strategies to be modified to better achieve defined conservation objectives at site and national levels. The World Heritage system provides an excellent basis to demonstrate the need for monitoring and the opportunities offered by effective monitoring in improving conditions for sites inscribed on the World Heritage List.

The World Heritage Convention: Partnerships to Conserve Nature and Bio-Diversity
International Centre for Theoretical Physics (ICTP), Trieste

The 30-year anniversary provides an opportunity to highlight the growing recognition of the Convention's contributions to conserve natural areas and bio-diversity of outstanding universal value. In the last three years, the United Nations Foundation (UNF) sponsored initiative to target World Heritage biodiversity sites for significant grant-support, the growing interest of conservation NGOs to join WHC and UNF to build capacity for World Heritage conservation, and the Convention's effectiveness as a tool to mitigate threats to sites, have all reinforced the Convention's profile and role. This workshop aims to create opportunities to further expand these partnerships and establish new ones.

World Heritage University Training
IULM Centre, Feltre

This workshop will explore the field of university training specialised in World Heritage issues. As such it is a crosscutting workshop, which intends to analyse the trends and perspectives of training in World Heritage. The aim will be to determine future orientations of training in this field such as cultural tourism, political sciences, inter-disciplinary studies, etc. The workshop will further analyse the training needs with regard the job market as well as the academia.

World Heritage Site Management

Caffé Pedrocchi, Padova

This workshop aims to re-examine World Heritage site-management needs, to review existing site-management guidelines, and to identify gaps in site-management tools, taking stock of 30 years of experience in the implementation of the World Heritage Convention. Through the participation of international and national policy makers and experts responsible for enhancing the World Heritage conservation process, it is hoped that conclusions and recommendations can be proposed to UNESCO, States Parties to the World Heritage Convention and its World Heritage Committee for increasing the capacity of site-managers for the next 30 years and beyond.

Mobilizing Youth for World Heritage
Alcuni Theatre, Treviso

TIn 1994, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and the Associated Schools Project Network launched the Young People's World Heritage Education Project, which seeks to give the young - tomorrow's decision makers - a chance to voice their concerns and learn how to respond to the continuing threats facing our World Heritage. In that context, the workshop will examine new ways and means to involve young people in promoting World Heritage, including the provision of training for young people and teachers for acquiring new skills and knowledge to produce innovative educational material such as animated cartoon (an example will be presented to the Congress) in support of World Heritage.