In 1994, the World Heritage Committee launched the Global Strategy for a Representative, Balanced and Credible World Heritage List. Its aim is to ensure that the List reflects the world's cultural and natural diversity of outstanding universal value.
Twenty-two years after the adoption of the 1972 Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, the World Heritage List lacked balance in the type of inscribed properties and in the geographical areas of the world that were represented. Among the 410 properties, 304 were cultural sites and only 90 were natural and 16 mixed, while the vast majority is located in developed regions of the world, notably in Europe. This section includes the objectives of the Global Strategy, analysis of the need for it, on-going efforts and related conferences and studies.
By adopting the Global Strategy, the World Heritage Committee wanted to broaden the definition of World Heritage to better reflect the full spectrum of our world’s cultural and natural treasures and to provide a comprehensive framework and operational methodology for implementing the World Heritage Convention.
This new vision goes beyond the narrow definitions of heritage and strives to recognize and protect sites that are outstanding demonstrations of human coexistence with the land as well as human interactions, cultural coexistence, spirituality and creative expression.
Crucial to the Global Strategy are efforts to encourage countries to become States Parties to the Convention, to prepare Tentative Lists and to prepare nominations of properties from categories and regions currently not well-represented on the World Heritage List.
A global study carried out by ICOMOS from 1987 to 1993 revealed that Europe, historic towns and religious monuments, Christianity, historical periods and ‘elitist’ architecture (in relation to vernacular) were all over-represented on the World Heritage List; whereas, all living cultures, and especially ‘traditional cultures’, were underrepresented.
At its 28th session in 2004, the World Heritage Committee reviewed more recent analyses of the World Heritage List and the Tentative Lists prepared by ICOMOS and IUCN. Both analyses were carried out on regional, chronological, geographical and thematic basis’ in order to evaluate the progress of the Global Strategy.
ICOMOS’ study found that the reasons for the gaps in the World Heritage List fall into two main categories: structural – relating to the World Heritage nomination process, and to managing and protecting cultural properties; and qualitative – relating to the way properties are identified, assessed and evaluated.
IUCN’s study pointed out that the natural and mixed sites currently inscribed on the World Heritage List cover almost all regions and habitats of the world with a relatively balanced distribution. However, there are still major gaps in the World Heritage List for natural areas such as: tropical/temperate grasslands, savannas, lake systems, tundra and polar systems, and cold winter deserts.
Since the launching of the Global Strategy, 39 new countries have ratified the World Heritage Convention, many from small Pacific Island States, Eastern Europe, Africa and Arab States.
The number of countries around the globe that have signed the World Heritage Convention in the course of the last ten years has risen from 139 to 178. The number of States Parties who have submitted Tentative Lists complying with the format established by the Committee has grown from 33 to 132. New categories for World Heritage sites have also been promoted, such as the categories of cultural landscapes, itineraries, industrial heritage, deserts, coastal-marine and small-island sites.
Important conferences and thematic studies aimed at implementing the Global Strategy have been held in Africa, the Pacific and Andean sub-regions, the Arab and Caribbean regions, central Asia and south-east Asia. These well-focused studies have become important guides for the implementation of the World Heritage Convention in these regions.
In an effort to further enhance the underrepresented categories of sites and improve geographical coverage, the World Heritage Committee has recently decided to limit the number of nominations that can be presented by each State Party and the number of nominations it will review during its session.
The World Heritage Committee works in cooperation with every State Party to the World Heritage Convention as well as its three Advisory Bodies: ICOMOS, IUCN and ICCROM, in order to make greater strides in diversifying the World Heritage List and make it truly balanced and representative of the world’s heritage.
Conferences and studies aimed at implementing the Global Strategy have been held or are planned in Africa, the Pacific region, the Arab region, the Andean region, the Caribbean, central Asia and southeast Asia.
- Report of the Expert Meeting on the "Global Strategy" and thematic studies for a representative World Heritage List (UNESCO Headquarters, 20-22 June 1994)
- Report of the 18th Session of the World Heritage Committee (Phuket, Thailand, 12-17 December 1994)
- African Cultural Heritage and the World Heritage Convention , First Global Strategy Meeting (Harare, Zimbabwe, 11-13 October 1995)
- Reports of the Experts Meeting on Evaluation of general principles and criteria for nominations of natural World Heritage sites (22-24 March 1996)
- Fortifcaciones del Caribe: Memorias de la reunion de expertos , Cartegena de los Indios, Colombia, 31 July - 2 August 1996
- Identification of World Heritage properties in the Pacific, Findings and Recommendations , Third Global Strategy Meeting, Suva, Fiji, 15-18 July 1997
- Identification of Potential Natural Heritage Sites in Arab Countries , (Cairo, 1997)
- Report on the World Heritage Global Strategy Natural and Cultural Heritage Expert Meeting , 25 -29 March 1998, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
- Report of the Regional Thematic Meeting on Cultural Landscapes in the Andes , Arquipa/Chivay, Peru, 17-22 May 1998
- Synthetic Report of the 4th Global Strategy Meeting for Western Africa , Benin, 16-19 September 1998
- Second World Heritage Global Strategy Meeting for the Pacific , Port Vila (Vanuatu) 24-27 August 1999
- Hanoi Statement , World Heritage Marine Biodiversity Workshop, Hanoi, Vietnam, 25 February - 1 March 2002
- Linking Universal and Local Values: Managing a Sustainable Future for World Heritage
(Amsterdam, the Netherlands, 22-24 May 2003)
- 30-31 August 2004, Nordic World Heritage Fundation Meeting, Vega, Norway
The World Heritage Committee,
- Having examined Document WHC-15/39.COM/5E,
- Recalling Resolution 17 GA 9 and Resolution 18 GA 8 adopted by the General Assembly at its 17th (2009) and 19th (2011) sessions respectively,
- Also recalling Decision 36 COM 9A, Decision 37 COM 11 and Decision 38 COM 9C adopted by the World Heritage Committee at its 36th (Saint Petersburg, 2012), its 37th (Phnom Penh, 2013) and its 38th (Doha, 2014) sessions respectively,
- Decides to amend Article 22.7 of the Rules of Procedure as follows:
“22.7 Representatives of a State Party, whether or not a member of the Committee, may be invited by the Chairperson to present their views once the Advisory Bodies have presented their evaluation of the site proposed by the State for inscription. The presentation shall be limited to a clarification or an update on the proposed site. After this permitted time, the State Party may be allowed to take the floor again, but only in order to answer questions, within a limited time, that have been asked. This provision also applies to other observers mentioned in Rule 8.”
The World Heritage Committee,
- Having examined Document WHC-14/38.COM/9C,
- Recalling Resolution 19 GA 9, particularly paragraphs 5, 6 and 12 adopted by the 19th session of the General Assembly of the States Parties to the Convention in 2013,
- Also recalling the principle that submission of nominations to the World Heritage List is an exclusive prerogative of the States Parties, in conformity with the World Heritage Convention,
- Reiterates the necessity to progress on the implementation of the recommendations of the independent evaluation by UNESCO’s External Auditor on the implementation of the Global Strategy, as requested by Resolution 17 GA 9 and reiterated by the above mentioned Resolution 19 GA 9;
- Strongly encourages the States Parties, with the exception of those that have no sites inscribed on the World Heritage List, to refrain on a voluntary basis from submitting new nominations during their mandate, taking into consideration the External Auditor recommendation 12 and in accordance with pertinent resolutions of the General Assembly, and within the context of the Global Strategy;
- Decides to establish an ad-hoc Working Group that will meet during its 39th session in 2015 to discuss the External Auditor Recommendation 20;
- Also decides to report on the outcomes of the discussions on recommendations 12 and 20 to the 20th session of the General Assembly to be held in 2015.
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined Document WHC-12/36.COM/9A,
2. Recalling Decision 35 COM 9A adopted at its 35th session (UNESCO, 2011) and Resolution 18 GA 8 of the 18th session of the General Assembly (UNESCO, 2011),
3. Notes that the World Heritage Centre in close collaboration with the Advisory Bodies, produceda working document on the recommendations of the independent evaluation by UNESCO’s external auditor with a prioritized list of recommendations in the framework of the objectives of the Strategic Action Plan, adopted in Resolution 18 GA 11, and considering Decisions 35 COM 12A to 35 COM 12E, which also indicated financial implications, and the allocation of responsibility between States Parties, the General Assembly, the World Heritage Committee, the Advisory Bodies and the World Heritage Centre;
4. Also notes that the World Heritage Centre, provided the document to all States Parties through Circular Letters dated 1 February 2012 and 24 April 2012;
5. Acknowledges with appreciation the financial support of the States Parties of Belgium, Switzerland and the Netherlands towards the travel support for experts and meeting other costs of the open-ended working group held at UNESCO 15-16 May 2012;
6. Takes note of the Implementation Plan concerning the Global Strategy prepared by the first meeting of the open-ended working group and that a second meeting on the PACT Initiative is scheduled to take place prior to the 37th session of the World Heritage Committee;
7. Welcomes that implementation has commenced on a number of recommendations and reiterates its request to all States Parties to fully comply with the provisions of the World Heritage Convention;
8. Decides to implement the recommendations within its mandate;
9. Further notes that a number of recommendations concern revisions to the Operational Guidelines and to the Rules of Procedures of the World Heritage Committee;
10. Also decides to include an item on Revisions to the Operational Guidelines and the Rules of Procedures on the agenda of its 37th session.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined Documents WHC-11/35.COM/9A and WHC-11/35.COM/INF.9A ,
2. Recalling Decision 34 COM 9A , adopted at its 34th session (Brasilia, 2010),
3. Also recalling Resolution 17 GA 9 , adopted by the 17th session of the General Assembly (UNESCO, 2009),
4. Requests the World Heritage Centre to transmit the documents to the 18th session of the General Assembly (UNESCO, 2011) for examination.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/9A,
2. Adopts the Terms of Reference for the evaluation of the Global Strategy for a representative, balanced, and credible World Heritage List, by deleting Paragraph 1a;
3. Also adopts the Terms of Reference for the evaluation of the PACT initiative, changing the formulation of its Paragraph 5 by adding "and of their traceability" and by completing the Terms of Reference with the following evaluations:
a) Evaluate the contents of the respective engagements of the World Heritage Centre and its private sector partners and appreciate the equitable character of these engagements,
b) Evaluate the conditions of use of the emblem of the Convention by private sector partners in order to assess whether they correspond to the objectives and provisions of the Convention,
c) Evaluate the contribution of PACT in developing partnerships at the local and regional levels in order to identify the possibility of establishing such partnerships at these levels, as well as the need to provide guidelines in this respect.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined Document WHC-10/34.COM/9C,
2. Notes the progress made on the revision of the Global Training Strategy;
3. Notes with appreciation the contribution of the State Party of Switzerland to the revision process leading towards a new World Heritage Capacity Building Strategy and to an interim capacity building programme for World Heritage;
4. Welcomes the further development of the existing World Heritage Category 2 Centres and encourages these centres to develop strategic plans in consultation with the World Heritage Centre and Advisory Bodies, and to coordinate their activities where relevant and also welcomes the offer of the Kingdom of Bahrain to host a meeting of the Category 2 Centres in December 2010.
5. Also notes the significant additional funding requirements necessary to achieve a complete and effective World Heritage Capacity Building Strategy;
6. Endorses the concept of the Revised Strategy moving from a more traditional focus on training to a wider approach on capacity building in keeping with the Strategic Directions of the World Heritage Committee (the "5C's");
7. Requests ICCROM, in collaboration with IUCN, ICOMOS, the World Heritage Centre, the UNESCO Chairs and Category 2 Centres related to World Heritage to finalize a new World Heritage Capacity Building Strategy as outlined in Document WHC-10/34.COM/9C, according to the timetable presented in the document, for discussion at its 35th session in 2011;
8. Further requests States Parties to prioritize the allocation of additional financial resources to support capacity building, taking into account the most important needs identified through the new World Heritage Capacity Building Strategy.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined Document WHC-09/33.COM/10B,
2. Recalling Decisions 7 EXT.COM 11, 31 COM 14, 32 COM 18 adopted respectively at its 7th Extraordinary session (UNESCO, 2004), 31st (Christchurch, 2007), and 32nd (Quebec City, 2008) sessions,
3. Encourages the World Heritage Centre, Advisory Bodies and State Parties to continue to support the broadening of the content of the global training strategy and welcomes the establishment of the World Heritage Training and Research Institutes in Bahrain and Brazil and requests the World Heritage Centre to inform the Committee regularly on the development of such Institutes;
4. Also requests the World Heritage Centre, ICCROM, IUCN, the States Parties and supporting institutions to prioritize identification of extra-budgetary funds for the implementation the Natural World Heritage Training and Capacity Development Programme proposal;
5. Decides to allocate USD 141,000 for developing interactive formats of the finalized manuals and for the development of the following two titles of Resource Manuals during the biennium 2010-2011:
a) Assessing and monitoring impacts of proposed developments and tourism/public use activities on the Outstanding Universal Value of World Heritage properties taking into account the existing World Heritage manual on tourism and the upcoming workshop on sustainable tourism to take place at the Mogao Caves World Heritage site in China in September/October 2009,
b) Tentative Lists as a component of the Nominations Manual.Read more about the decision
No decision required.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Having examined document WHC-05/29.COM/10,
2. Recalling Decision 7 EXT.COM 11, adopted at its 7th extraordinary session (UNESCO, 2004),
3. Notes that the funding to IUCN foreseen in the Proposed Budget 2006-2007 is inadequate to effectively lead on the implementation of the Global Framework Programme for Capacity Building on Natural Heritage;
4. Allocates an amount of US$40,000 to IUCN under the World Heritage Fund budget-line 1.2 for Advisory Bodies' services in addition to the current proposal of US$65,000 for the biennium 2006-2007, to allow for the acceleration of existing activities in relation to preparation of training manuals and support for training workshops, in addition to the development and implementation of an action plan for raising extra-budgetary funds to support the implementation of the Global Framework Programme for natural heritage training and capacity building, by transferring the equivalent amount from the budget-line 3.2.1 for International Assistance for Training and Research;
5. Requests IUCN to report on progress in this regard to the World Heritage Committee at its 31st session (2007);
6. Urges States Parties and the relevant Non-Governmental Organizations to collaborate with IUCN and provide support to the strategic implementation of the Global Framework Programme for Capacity Building on Natural Heritage.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Recalling the conclusions on the "Evaluation of the Cairns Decision" by the 27th session (Decision 27 COM 14), the Decision adopted on the Representivity of the World Heritage List at its 24th session ("Cairns Decision", 2000), subsequently endorsed by the General Assembly of State Parties at its 13th session (2001); and the Resolution on ways and means to ensure a representative World Heritage List adopted by the General Assembly at its 12th session (1999),
2. Further recalling that the World Heritage Convention establishes a system of international co-operation and assistance for the protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage,
3. Recognising the need to increase the technical and administrative capacity of the World Heritage systems, to encourage growth of under-represented categories and geographical coverage, and acknowledge the work constraints of the Committee, the Advisory Bodies, World Heritage Centre and States Parties to achieve this objective,
4. Noting with interest the results of the ICOMOS and IUCN analyses, as well as additional analyses undertaken by the World Heritage Centre as presented in document WHC-04/28.COM/13,
5. Concerned in particular with the conclusion that constraints and gaps in the World Heritage List primarily relate to lack of technical capacity to prepare adequate assessments and inventories of heritage properties, to promote and prepare nominations and relate to the lack of an appropriate legal and management framework;
6. Emphasizing that Tentative Lists are an effective and indispensable tool in the identification of potential World Heritage properties at national and (sub)regional level, and thereby contributing to the representativity of the World Heritage List,
7. Considering that these concerns are already essential elements of the "Cairns Decision" that have, however, not been fully implemented,
8. Further emphasizing that all issues addressed by the "Cairns Decision" need full and adequate implementation and that the World Heritage Centre and States Parties in the coming years should focus on those elements that have not been sufficiently addressed such as the development of balanced Tentative Lists and capacity building,
9. Recalls that the Committee had previously decided:
a) to make available to all stakeholders all appropriate statutory World Heritage documentation, including documentation on the pre-, during and post-inscription process of World Heritage properties,
b) to encourage the increased participation of local authorities, civil society organizations and populations in the identification of the cultural and natural heritage of States Parties,
c) to implement regional, and, as appropriate, sub-regional programmes based on results of Periodic Reporting to increase the State Parties' capacity for the identification, nomination, and conservation of World Heritage properties,
d) to encourage States Parties to initiate and complete national inventories for cultural and natural heritage,
e) to review the effectiveness and appropriateness of national legal and institutional frameworks and policies and to provide advice to States Parties, upon their request, on reform of national, legal and institutional frameworks and policies,
f) to identify national, regional and international existing institutions, facilities and networks that offer training in heritage conservation and management and that can participate in the implementation of capacity building strategies and programmes;
10. Considers that capacity-building should be strategic, comprehensive, and institutionalised, and that it should focus, in particular on the identification of potential properties, preparation of representative Tentative Lists, preparation of nominations, conservation action and management of properties;
11. Calls upon
a) States Parties, the World Heritage Centre and other partners to significantly increase their support to States Parties, in particular those less represented in the List, in the identification of cultural, natural and mixed properties of potential outstanding universal value, as well as in the preparation of nomination dossiers ;
b) the Advisory Bodies (ICOMOS, ICCROM, IUCN) to increase their support to States Parties, in particular those less represented in the List, in the identification of cultural, natural and mixed properties of potential outstanding universal value;
12. Requests IUCN and ICOMOS to complete their analyses of the Tentative Lists, work on the gaps in the World Heritage List with due consideration to all States Parties and regions of the world and continue their thematic studies;
13. Further requests the World Heritage Centre, in co-operation with States Parties, ICOMOS, IUCN, ICCROM, appropriate scientific institutions, selected governmental and non-governmental experts, appropriate ntergovernmental and non-governmental organizations and other relevant partners, to convene, as soon as possible and not later than March 2005, a special meeting of experts of all regions with the following aims:
a) make specific proposals to enable States Parties to better identify natural, cultural and mixed properties of potential outstanding universal value. Such proposals should include a reflection on the concept of Outstanding Universal Value as defined by the World Heritage Convention and in the context of regions, including cultural and biogeographical regions – and, as appropriate, sub regions -, with a view to compiling representative Tentative Lists, as well as the elaboration of a comparative analysis and evaluation of the Tentative Lists, and a compilation of best practices in the preparation of such lists. At a minimum, the proposals should generate the conditions to ensure that by 2007 all States Parties have submitted Tentative Lists, which are substantially in accordance with Article 11 of the World Heritage Convention and its Operational Guidelines,
b) in the framework of Article 7 of the World Heritage Convention, make specific proposals to enable less-represented and non-represented States Parties to improve the quality of nominations and, consequently, the success rate of inscriptions on the World Heritage List of properties from such States Parties. At a minimum, by 2007 the proposals should lead to a decrease of at least 30% in the number of such less-represented and nonrepresented States Parties,
c) in the framework of Article 7 of the World Heritage Convention, make specific proposals to enable States Parties - in particular those lessrepresented and non-represented - to identify sufficient funding sources for the sustainable conservation of the properties thus inscribed. Such proposals could include the creation of inter-institutional and inter-sectoral site commissions and the networking of properties in order to ensure their adequate monitoring, management, including traditional management mechanisms, involvement of local populations and sustainable conservation. At a minimum, by 2007 the proposals should lead to the removal from the World Heritage List in Danger of at least 20% of the properties inscribed on that List,
d) on the basis of the refinement of the analysis referred to in paragraph 4 make specific proposals for the follow–up of such analysis. At a minimum, by 2007 such proposals should lead to the elaboration of regional – and, as appropriate, sub regional- programs, as well as to the adoption and harmonization of regional – and, as appropriate, sub regional- action plans fully consistent with the pertinent periodic reports;
14. Takes note of the offer by the Russian Federation to host the special meeting of experts of all regions referred to in paragraph 13 above;
15. Further requests the World Heritage Centre to report on the proposals and conclusions of the special meeting of experts of all regions referred to in paragraph 13, for consideration by the Committee at its 29th session (2005);
16. Decides to apply at its 29th session (2005) the mechanism set out in paragraphs 1 to 5 of Decision 27 COM 14, and requests the World Heritage Centre to distribute as soon as possible the full list of nominations admissible for examination by such session;
17. Also decides, on an experimental and transitory basis, to apply the following mechanism at its 30th session (2006):
a) examine up to two complete nominations per State Party, provided that at least one of such nominations concerns a natural property; and,
b) set at 45 the annual limit on the number of nominations it will review , inclusive of nominations deferred and referred by previous sessions of the Committee, extensions (except minor modifications of limits of the property), transboundary nominations, serial nominations and nominations submitted on an emergency basis,
c) the order of priorities for the examination of new nominations shall remain as decided by the Committee at its 24th session (2000):
(i) nominations of properties submitted by States Parties with no properties inscribed on the List,
(ii) nominations of properties from any State Party that illustrate unrepresented or less represented categories of natural and cultural categories,
(iii) other nominations,
(iv) when applying this priority system, date of receipt of full and complete nominations by the World Heritage Centre shall be used as secondary determining factor within the category where the number of nomination fixed by the Committee has been reached;
18. Further decides to examine the transitory mechanism set out in paragraph 17 at its 31st session (2007), on the basis of:
a) the results of the process set out in paragraphs 13 and 15 above,
b) the extent to which the nominations presented at its 30th session (2006) contribute to the aim of a representative World Heritage List.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Takes note of the information provided by the World Heritage Centre in WHC-03/28.COM/INF 13A and commends Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru on the progress made on the implementation of the candidature process for the inscription of the Qhapaq Ñan (Main Andean Road) on the World Heritage List;
2. Considering the results of the consultation meetings with the Permanent Delegations to UNESCO of the referred six States Parties and the documents adopted at the Second Expert Meeting held in Cusco on 24 - 26 October 2003
and Third Expert Meeting held in La Paz on 4-7 April 2004, commends the World Heritage Centre on establishing a consultation mechanism with the States Parties concerned to ensure the proper coordination and follow-up of actions and international assistance, that will be required to successfully implement the process of nomination of the Qhapaq Ñan (Main Andean Road) for inscription on the World Heritage List and requests the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to collaborate with the States Parties concerned in the implementation of the recommendations of the Second and Third expert
3. Welcomes the desire of the States Party to develop multi-national co-operation for a joint World Heritage nomination and to respond to priorities established by
the World Heritage Committee in the context of the Global Strategy for a Representative World Heritage List, the Periodic Report for Latin America and the Caribbean and the Budapest Declaration;
4. Encourages Ecuador and Colombia to include in their Tentative Lists properties related to Qhapaq Ñan (Main Andean Road) situated on their territories;
5. Also requests the World Heritage Centre, in consultation and coordination with the States Parties concerned and in co-operation with UNESCO office in Lima and, when appropriate, other regional offices of UNESCO to promote an adequate coordination of the World Heritage inscription initiative with other relevant programmers, projects and activities, such as the Inter- American Development Bank (IDB) Technical Co-operation project;
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6. Agrees on the need to begin, in parallel to the process of the candidature, a
forward-looking process for international co-operation between the World
Heritage Centre and international donors or funding agencies worldwide to
establish a solid mechanism to ensure the continuity of a successful future after
the nomination, taking into account the Regional Action Plan which is being
prepared by the six State Parties with the financial support of the Inter-American
7. Congratulates the World Heritage Centre on its initiative to organize, in 2006, an
International Conference to seek extra-budgetary contributions from relevant
donor and financing institutions to develop an action plan for the coming 10
8. Thanks Spain and Netherlands for contributing Extra-budgetary Funds for
implementing actions foreseen in 2004 and encourages other State Parties to the
World Heritage Convention to contribute additional financial and human
resources for the project;
9. Requests the Director of the World Heritage Centre to use appropriate resources
for the implementation of this project from the World Heritage Fund in 2005;
10. Encourages the World Heritage Centre to implement an awareness-raising action
to increase the general public knowledge of the project;
11. Further requests that the World Heritage Centre inform the World Heritage
Committee at its 29th session in 2005 on the progress made in the
implementation of this initiative.
The World Heritage Committee ,
1. Defers examination of documents WHC-03/27.COM/9 and WHC-03/27.COM/INF.9 to the 28th session of the World Heritage Committee in 2004.
 See also Decision 27 COM 2Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Noting the Regional Progress Reports (2002-2003) and Action Plans 2004-2005 for the Global Strategy presented in document WHC-03/27.COM/1,3;
2. Requests the World Heritage Centre, working in collaboration with the Advisory Bodies and States Parties to the World Heritage Convention to continue to implement the Global Strategy as a contribution to strengthening the credibility of the World Heritage List; (check French - from Belgium)
3. Further requests the World Heritage Centre to prepare summaries and assessments of the results of the Global Strategy meetings and the thematic studies.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Taking note of the information provided by the World Heritage Centre in WHC-03/27.COM/13 and WHC-03/27.COM/INF.13 on the initiative of five Andean States Parties to collaborate in the process of nominating the Qhapac Nan - Camino Inca road system for inscription on the World Heritage List,;
2. Considering the results of the consultation meeting with the Permanent Delegations to UNESCO (29th January 2003 at UNESCO Headquarters), and the documents adopted at the first sub-regional technical meeting held in Lima, Peru, on 1 and 2 April 2003,
3. Welcoming the wishdesire of the States Parties to develop multi-national co-operation for a joint World Heritage nomination and to respond to priorities established by the World Heritage Committee in the context of the Global Strategy for a Representative World Heritage List and the Committee's Budapest Declaration,;
4. Encourages the States Parties concerned to include in their Tentative Lists properties related to Qhapac Nan - Camino Inca situated on their territories;
5. Requests the World Heritage Centre to establish a consultation mechanism with the Permanent Delegations of the States Parties concerned. This should ensure the proper coordination and follow-up of actions and international assistance on the sub-regional level, and national level as appropriate, that will be required to implement successfully the process of nomination of the Qhapac Nan - Camino Inca for inscription on the World Heritage List;
6. Requests the World Heritage Centre, in consultation and coordination with the Permanent Delegations of the States Parties concerned and in co-operation with the relevant UNESCO offices in the region, to ensure the proper coordination of the World Heritage inscription initiative with other relevant programmes, projects and activities, such as the Inter-Development Bank (IDB) Technical Co-operation project and the IUCN protected areas project;
7. Requests the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to collaborate with the States Parties concerned in the implementation of the recommendations of the first sub-regional technical meeting held in Lima, Peru, and in seeking extra-budgetary contributions from relevant donor and financing institutions;
8. Authorizes the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to organize a scientific meeting on the Qhapac Nan - Camino Inca as recommended by the delegates at the meeting in Lima in April 2003. This meeting should take place in Peru in the second half of 2003;
9. Requests that the World Heritage Centre inform the World Heritage Committee at its 28th session in 2004 on the progress made in the implementation of this initiative.Read more about the decision
The World Heritage Committee,
1. Noting with concern the continuing disparities between regions and States Parties in their capacity to prepare Tentative Lists and nominations of properties for inscription on the World Heritage List,;
2. Noting the progress made in the analyses of the World Heritage List being undertaken by ICOMOS and IUCN for submission to the 28th session of the World Heritage Committee in 2004,;
3. Recognizing the progress in the preparation of studies to promote the revision of national tentative lists through regional consultations and the periodic reporting exercise,
4. Recommends that States Parties link the revision of their Tentative Lists to the Periodic Report;
5. Invites the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to reinforce the links between the first Strategic Objective (1st C - reinforce the Credibility of the World Heritage List), the "Global Strategy for a representative, balanced and credible World Heritage List", the Periodic Report on the implementation of the Convention and the Regional Programmes;
6. Bearing in mind Articles 11 and 12 of the Convention, considers that the status of the tentative lists should be enhanced so that the inclusion of properties on this list would already entail, for the State Party, a form of international recognition,;
7. Recalling the spirit of the Resolution of the 12th General Assembly of States Parties in 1999, notably in encouraging bilateral and multilateral co-operation for the benefit of States Parties whose heritage is under-represented in the List; and to promote their capacity-building and training,;
8. Invites States Parties whose heritage is well represented on the List to voluntarily space new nominations and to assist the under-represented States Parties requiring technical co-operation to enhance conditions for the preparation and updating of Tentative Lists and the nomination of their cultural and natural heritage;
9. Recalling its decision 26 COM 13 regarding the analyses of the World Heritage List and the Tentative Lists and the presentation of the results of these analyses at the 28th session in 2004,;
10. Requests the World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to support the States Parties:
(a) implementation of the Global Strategy for a credible, balanced and representative World Heritage List and Tentative Lists, and
(b) elaboration of practical and operational actions within the Regional Programmes to enhance the representivity of the World Heritage List in view of the world's cultural and natural diversity, as part of the implementation of the Strategic Objective to strengthen the credibility of the World Heritage List.Read more about the decision
IX.4 Several Committee members stressed the importance of the Resolution of the General Assembly concerning the Representivity of the World Heritage List and that the substantive work on the analysis of the current World Heritage List and the tentative lists must be given top priority. New thematic studies and meetings should be carried out only upon the completion of this global analysis, and on the basis of the priorities identified for each region. A number of delegates stated that since 1994, many regional and thematic meetings have been convened, and the results of these meetings need to be reviewed before others are launched.
IX.7 The Committee thanked the Secretariat for the document prepared but stated that the numerous activities proposed need to be prioritised. Members of the Committee noted the following points:
IX.8 For the Caribbean, the work proposed for coastal and marine sites has a high priority and needs to be linked to existing GEF/World Bank projects and other regional and sub-regional programmes and projects; that the Slave Route project also be given high priority for the Caribbean under the cultural heritage category; and that the proposed study and expert meeting on rock art are not priorities in view of extensive studies already existing on this subject. The Committee stressed the need to ensure complementarity of activities under the Global Strategy for a representative World Heritage List and the Periodic Reports.
IX.9 A number of delegates from Latin America underlined the importance of using the tentative lists as a planning tool and that the inclusion of sites on these lists indicated that they already meet minimum standards. Although agreement on the limitation of nominations is a major step forward, this should not negatively affect States Parties that are under-represented in the World Heritage List or having sites belonging to under-represented categories. States Parties that are already well represented on the List should voluntarily refrain from submitting nominations. It was mentioned that the Ibero-American network (Ushuaia, Argentina, 2002), would be an important forum to discuss potential natural heritage from the region.
IX.10 For the African region, priority should be given to the preparation of tentative lists and nominations from States Parties, and in the identification of underrepresented categories. Given the capacity-building requirements in the majority of States Parties of this region, the need to mobilize international co-operation was stressed. A number of African State Party representatives expressed concern over the demand for high quality documentation for the nomination files, often beyond the capacity of the African States Parties to provide.
IX.11 Concerning Asia, the Committee commended the Centre for the well-structured analysis by sub-region of the World Heritage List that provides a useful overview of the represented and under-represented categories in the region. The Delegate of India underscored the importance of identifying ancient routes and trade links within the southeast Asian sub-region. A standard presentation for all regions could be used as a strategic tool to assess the overall situation, and budget allocations should be made accordingly. The Committee noted the results of the regional thematic meeting on Sacred Mountains in Asia-Pacific and of the proceedings already published by the Government of Japan. The results should be also taken into account for discussions on criterion (vi), as many sites may only qualify for their relationship between the intangible values and the natural environment. It was stressed that the conditions of integrity need to be applied for cultural heritage in this region.
IX.14 The Committee was informed that a number of States Parties are currently preparing transboundary nominations. Co-operation between countries should be encouraged to ensure a better representivity of the World Heritage List and solidarity between countries from different regions. The fact that forty-nine countries still have no tentative lists indicated the urgent need to extend assistance in this field. The Committee agreed that transfrontier, serial and other nominations should be encouraged as well as links to the MAB programme.
IX.15 With regard to the Alpine Arc, the Committee noted that a new, co-ordinated and regional approach for international collaboration was promoted by the six countries of the Alpine region (Austria, Germany, France, Italy, Slovenia, Switzerland), and that following the expert meeting at Hallstatt (Austria, June 2000), two States Party meetings were convened (Turin, Italy, July 2001 and UNESCO Headquarters, October 2001) to discuss the diversity, values and composition of the Alpine Arc. Taking into account the complexity of such a regional approach, the countries agreed to schedule a follow-up meeting for the beginning of 2002. This process accompanied by international experts and the World Heritage Centre should encourage the States Parties to continue with this innovative and regional approach in World Heritage nomination.
IX.16 Commenting on the Secretariat's report on the Desert Landscape Meeting, organized in Egypt (September 2001), the Committee recalled the importance of this category of properties. It recommended that resources be allocated to further the process of identification of potential desert landscapes for possible inclusion on the World Heritage List, starting with those located across two or more countries. Committee members from the Arab region stated that this should be the focus rather than dispersing resources on less urgent initiatives, such as the proposed Thematic Study on Modern Heritage in the Arab States. In this respect, and taking into account that deserts are a common feature across several regions of the world, the Committee stressed the desirability of a more intense inter-regional co-operation in this field, such as in the Mediterranean Action Plan. The Delegate of Egypt suggested that the year 2003 be declared an International Year of the Desert.
IX.17 Concerning priorities, particularly in the Arab region, the Committee insisted also on the importance of addressing heritage legislation and institutional building, as these are an essential precondition for the establishment of appropriate conservation practices.
IX.19 The Committee concluded its examination of Global Strategy activities by reiterating the need for the Secretariat to focus on the analysis of the World Heritage List and the national tentative lists as a priority, as well as on assistance to States Parties for the establishment and revision of these tentative lists as required. The Committee however noted that a conceptual discussion is needed to provide a framework for such analyses and also recognized the need to identify methodologies to define under-represented categories of heritage.
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IX.1 The Secretariat introduced document WHC-2000/CONF.204/11 describing the progress report on the implementation of regional actions as described in the Global Strategy Action Plan adopted by the Committee at its twenty-second session (Kyoto, 1998). The Committee reviewed progress achieved in the year 2000, noting the regional Action Plans for 2001-2002 and approved specific activities to be executed during 2001.
IX.2 The Delegate of Benin noted the importance of implementing the Global Strategy and linking it to issues related to improving the representivity of the List. The Centre's efforts in Africa were commended. He informed the Committee that international co-operation activities offered by countries such as Norway and France have improved support to African States Parties and appealed for the expansion of such effective partnerships with other donor nations. He drew the attention of the Committee to the recommendations of the meeting held in Zimbabwe on authenticity within the African context (reference: WHC-2000/CONF.4/INF.11) and suggested that the list of recommendations of that meeting be widely circulated. He welcomed planned activities to improve awareness of the work of the Convention in States Parties and urged the Centre to aim for a balanced distribution of activities 2.2 - 2.8 of the Action Plan among the various sub-regions of Africa.
IX.3 The Delegate of South Africa acknowledged the usefulness of Global Strategy activities in Africa and called for special attention to raise awareness for the protection of World Heritage of States Parties such as the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) suffering from war and armed conflict. She expressed the hope that peace would return to DRC soon and in the meantime urged the Centre to make efforts to raise awareness among decisionmakers and the people as a whole so that they can understand the universal significance of these sites. She proposed that consideration be given to designating World Heritage sites in zones of conflict, such as those in the DRC, as 'peace parks' and efforts be made to link protection of these sites to peace-making efforts.
IX.4 The Observer of Japan made reference to the Workshop on "Nature and Biodiversity as World Heritage", (page 12 of working document CONF.204/11), and expressed Japan's satisfaction with the successful conduct of that Workshop which was held in close cooperation with the Centre, IUCN and East and Southeast Asian States Parties, as well as with the participation of New Zealand. The Workshop had resulted in a "Strategic Statement on Natural World Heritage in East and Southeast Asia" describing practical measures to enhance the implementation of the Global Strategy Action Plan and raising awareness of the role of the Convention in biodiversity conservation. He said that copies of the "Strategic Statement" and the proceedings of the Workshop could be made available to interested States Parties. He expressed Japan's continuing interest to collaborate with the Centre and IUCN to improve the implementation of the Convention and attain the objectives of the "Strategic Statement" in East and Southeast Asia.
IX.5 Japan intends to host a thematic expert meeting on Asian Sacred Mountains as Cultural Landscapes at the Wakayama Prefecture from 4 to 12 September 2001 and hoped that the participation of representatives of less developed countries at the Workshop could be supported through international assistance from the World Heritage Fund.
IX.6 The Delegate of Greece pointed out that the document needed to set out priorities as well as emphasizing a selection of themes for meetings and workshops. She called for a better illustration of the links between the activities implemented as part of the Global Strategy Action Plan and the preparation of indicative lists and training activities. She noted that several workshops and seminars had been held, but a critical analysis and evaluation of such activities was lacking.
IX.7 The Representative of IUCN highlighted the need to link the implementation of the Global Strategy Action Plan and improving the representivity of the World Heritage List. He noted the importance of identifying critical gaps in the List and in that regard highlighted the work of the Centre and IUCN to undertake a global review of the application of the Convention in coastal and marine ecosystems. Currently, World Heritage sites in coastal and marine ecosystems are under-represented. To address that, there would be a workshop on marine World Heritage in 2001. The IUCN Representative also drew the attention to the World Parks Congress to be held in 2003 in Durban, South Africa. Referring to the comments of the Delegate of South Africa, he emphasized the significance of the links between the Global Strategy and periodic and reactive monitoring activities.
IX.8 The Ambassador of France to UNESCO made a presentation of the France-UNESCO Co-operation Agreement for Protection of Monumental, Urban and Natural Heritage signed in 1997. This instrument of cooperation aims to support the implementation of the Convention, and in particular, includes provisions for preparatory assistance to assist under-represented States Parties to meet the conditions required for the nomination of sites. The co-operation therefore includes activities that strengthen legal protection, management and restoration of sites on the tentative lists as well as designated World Heritage sites, and support for improvement of documentation and training of personnel in less developed countries. A joint co-ordination and a technical committee facilitate the selection and implementation of activities and emphasis is on decentralised co-operation; i.e. cooperation between designated sites in less developed countries (e.g. Luang Prabang in Laos) and in France (e.g. Chinon), or co-operation between local authorities. Most projects are of a minimum 3-year duration and between 1997 and 1999, 17 projects have been launched in 26 countries including amongst others, Argentina, Brazil and Colombia in Latin America, Benin, Ethiopia, Madagascar, Nigeria and Senegal in Africa and China and Laos in Asia. He invited other countries interested in participating in the co-operative programme to contact the French Delegation at UNESCO, Paris.
IX.9 The Chairperson thanked the Ambassador of France for the information provided and noted that the French-UNESCO co-operative programme could serve as a model for similar efforts of other interested States Parties. He requested the Ambassador of France to transmit the Committee's thanks to the relevant French authorities.
IX.10 The Delegate of Italy informed the Committee that following the "Regional Thematic Expert Meeting on Potential Natural World Heritage Sites in the Alps" (Hallstatt, Austria, 18 to 22 June 2000) it wished to follow-up on the important issues related to the definition and protection of the Alpine Arc as a transborder territory with outstanding natural and cultural landscape values. To this end, a meeting is to be organized in spring 2001 in Turin, Italy. States Parties from the Alpine Arc, the Centre, the advisory bodies, local communities, NGOs, as well as other institutions and organizations involved were invited to attend.
IX.11 The Observer of Germany congratulated the Centre for the excellent and valuable work in the framework of the Global Strategy. Following the comments from Greece, he felt that the results are sometimes not well recognized by the national and local authorities and that a more comprehensive follow-up including publication and dissemination of results, would be needed. He requested that the Centre report back on this matter to the next Committee session.Read more about the decision
XV.1 The Chair stated that this agenda item has two components, the Global Training Strategy and the establishment of a Heritage Partnership Programme. The Secretariat presented working document WHC-2000/CONF.204/18 indicating that there were two recommendations for adoption by the Committee, the first on a Global Training Strategy for Cultural Heritage, prepared by ICCROM, and the second, recommendations for follow-up activities to the Strategic Action Plan for Training in the Field of Natural Heritage. The Centre drew the attention of the Committee to the substantive 66-page document Global Training Strategy for Cultural Heritage prepared by ICCROM, which is provided in full as information document WHC-2000/CONF.204/INF.16, to complement the summary of ICCROM's reflection contained in working document CONF.204/18.
XV.2 The Secretariat reported that the meeting between the World Heritage Centre, ICCROM and interested States Parties and other advisory bodies to develop "the Regional Training Strategy and Programme Matrix and Related Action Plan", which ICCROM proposed to host was not held due to the Special Session of the Bureau in Budapest. She emphasized the increasing awareness of the importance of training, especially national-level capacity building and how the target audience for training evolved along with the changed notion of heritage. Stating that training forms an essential part of UNESCO's fundamental task to support national capacity building in the fields of competence of the Organization, the Secretariat informed the Committee of the main orientation of past and ongoing training activities incorporating them in the heritage conservation supported by UNESCO. Due to difficulties in obtaining donor support for specialized national and regional training institutions for heritage conservation, UNESCO shifted its focus to site-based on-the-job training activities inserted in the operational projects entrusted to the Organization to coordinate or execute, and to building partnerships with existing institutions to insert teaching in heritage management and conservation skills. In this regard, she expressed the Centre's appreciation for the newly established world heritage studies programmes at the Technical University in Cottbus, Germany, Cilento National Park, Italy; Beijing University, China, Waseda University, Japan, and indicated that the Francois Rabelais University in Tours, France will soon be starting a programme on world heritage and cultural landscape.
XV.3 Stressing the need for coherence and complementarity in the numerous on-going initiatives and activities, the Centre expressed its appreciation for the collaboration of ICCROM in the development of this Global Training Strategy for Cultural Heritage which was fully endorsed by the Centre. ICCROM's newly appointed Director-General, Dr. Nicholas Stanley-Price, introduced the Global Training Strategy for World Cultural Heritage and stressed ICCROM's interest in strengthening its role as an Advisory Body to the World Heritage Committee. The detailed presentation, made by ICCROM staff Herb Stovel and Nobuko Inaba, emphasized the importance of bringing the 6 year development of the Strategy to a close, given the advent of the periodic reporting process, and its expected strategic outputs for training. The ICCROM presentation covered historical development of the strategy as initially requested by the Bureau in June 1994, a brief review of ICCROM activities in support of the Convention in 2000, and outlined and elaborated on key elements of the proposed strategic approach.
XV.4 These key elements included a "framework of principles" developed in expert discussions over several years and used to define a "strategic orientation" for the training strategy, priority actions within international strategies and programmes, indicative areas of action within regional strategies and programmes, a funding and implementation strategy and particular roles and responsibilities within a World Heritage training system. The funding and implementation strategy proposed included administrative measures (enhancing use of internal assessment and periodic reporting review tools), measures concerning more focussed use of the World Heritage Fund, and measures to attract and guide external funding. The presentation of roles and responsibilities within an overall World Heritage training system elaborated on the role assigned to ICCROM as "priority partner in training" by the Committee in 1996, stressing ICCROM's co-ordination role, its quality control role, its role as builder of networks for World Heritage training, its role in development of training materials for delivery by others, and the importance of its role in developing training proposals with the World Heritage Centre.
XV.5 The delegates strongly welcomed the Strategy for providing a coherent framework, for emphasizing the link to periodic reporting and for stressing the importance of the practical guidelines. Some Delegates expressed a feeling that the existence of three different documents (two working documents and one information document) rather than a consolidated one, caused confusion. The Committee asked the Secretariat and ICCROM to produce one integrated document for consideration by the Bureau at the twenty-fifth session.
XV.6 The Committee, upon reviewing the actions proposed by the Centre in document CONF/ 204/18, adopted the following:
- For institutional teaching: continue identification of partners in collaboration with ICCROM, ICOMOS and relevant divisions of UNESCO; streamline Forum UNESCO network and activities;
- For individual scholarships and study tour opportunities: joint evaluation by ICCROM-World Heritage Centre on UNESCO fellowship programme and solicit more financial contributions and institutional partnerships.
- For inventory of cultural resources and mapping: to establish modalities of cooperation with international, regional and bilateral development cooperation agencies
- For conservation of historic monuments and archaeological sites: in cooperation with national conservation agencies, ICCROM, UNESCO, Nordic World Heritage Office (NWHO), Nara Cultural Heritage Protection Office (ACCU/Nara) and Forum UNESCO, to develop a more systematic approach to identify on-site, on-the-job training opportunities at World Heritage Sites; develop a proposal for an international or regional UNESCO-ICCROM recognized diploma or certificate which would include on-site training towards these diplomas, and, to identify means to ensure multi-year funding to stabilize such training courses.
XV.7 The Committee, upon examining the proposed Global Training Strategy for Cultural Heritage adopted the following priority actions:
- To be most effective, a global training strategy must be composed of complementary regional training strategies. Towards this end, continuing attention must be given to monitoring, updating and refining regional training strategies.
- Training for World Heritage is best improved by strengthening provisions for conservation training at all levels and in all related disciplines globally. Training programmes specifically set up to focus on World Heritage site conservation may cause unnecessarily duplication of effort. Rather, existing and new conservation training programmes should be encouraged to integrate World Heritage components and perspectives.
- The Committee, Centre, and Advisory Bodies should ensure appropriate monitoring and follow-up of training activities carried out within the Global Training Strategy. Information on training activities should be archived as a planning tool for future activities.
- The "checklist and criteria for review of requests of training assistance" developed by ICCROM should be reviewed and adopted by the Committee to ensure consistent and transparent review of training requests.
- The "framework of principles" to guide planning and development of proactive training initiatives should be reviewed and adopted by the Committee.
- Results of the periodic reporting process should be used to update and adapt, as necessary, the global and regional training strategies.
The Committee should integrate these results into its overall strategic planning process
International training perspectives
- Training institutions which have already developed World Heritage components should be utilized by the Committee to the fullest extent possible to deliver training activities.
- In regions where such specialization does not yet exist, the Committee should encourage leading regional institutions to develop programmes with significant World Heritage focus.
- Training programmes should be linked to the whole process of World Heritage protection including preparation of tentative lists, nominations and monitoring after inscription.
- Although specific needs can best be addressed by looking at the local and regional context, the exchange of information and practices at the international level plays an important development and testing role for new approaches and ideas.
- Establishment of a network of existing international/regional/national training institutions concerned with World Heritage.
- Development of a series of off-the-shelf training modules and supporting materials to improve implementation of the Convention, particularly in relation to preparing nominations and to carrying out periodic reporting and related state of conservation monitoring for sites.
- Continued development of the Management Guidelines series published by ICCROM, UNESCO, and ICOMOS to include areas not yet covered (e.g., archaeological sites).
- Development of simplified "technical notes" and advice, linked to the above Management Guidelines series, for site managers.
- Explore development of a capacity-building programme based on continuing exchange of teams of professionals, site managers and national decisionmakers from "well-represented" and "underrepresented" countries, which would treat, in line with regional periodic reporting results, development of draft tentative lists, nominations, state-of-conservation monitoring reports, and analysis of best management practices.
- Development of trainers' workshops and programmes, intended to strengthen the capacity of training leaders (including site managers) to develop and deliver needed training for improved implementation of the World Heritage Convention.
XV.8 The Secretariat introduced the natural heritage component of the document WHC-2000/CONF.204/18 as reported on pages 13 - 15 of that document.
XV.9 IUCN agreed with the five points of action recommended by the Secretariat for adoption by the Committee. IUCN considered training to be an important tool for achieving the goals and objectives of the Convention and informed the Committee that it will start discussions with the Centre to find better ways to implement the Strategic Action Plan for Training Specialists in Natural Heritage as adopted by the eighteenth session of the Committee (Berlin, 1995). IUCN also offered to assist the Committee and the Centre to elaborate a Global Training Strategy for Natural Heritage similar to that developed by ICCROM for cultural heritage.
XV.10 The Delegate of Canada encouraged the Committee and the Centre to accept the offer of IUCN to develop Global Training Strategy for Natural Heritage. If developed, this natural heritage component, together with that developed by ICCROM for cultural heritage, will constitute a complete training strategy for the Convention.
The Committee requested the Centre to co-operate with IUCN and other relevant partners in order to:
- Re-inform States Parties of the Strategic Action Plan for Training in the field of Natural Heritage adopted by the Committee in 1995, stressing that the Plan will determine the activities eligible for financial support from the World Heritage Fund beginning from 2001;
- Communicate with Regional Training Institutes such as Mweka College, Tanzania and Garoua College, Cameroon, to review the annual fellowship-support granted to them so far and initiate negotiations with them as well as with other new, training institutes in Africa to redesign training support to African site personnel using World Heritage Regional Training Workshops as recommended by Action 2 of the Plan that could benefit a larger number of personnel each year;
- Review links between the Strategic Action Plan for Training in the field of Natural Heritage and the recommendations of the CONNECT (Capacity Building for Outreach, Natural Heritage Networking, Education, Co-operation and Training) Task Force meeting with a view to design and develop pilot projects and actions which have significance for natural heritage training, education and outreach;
- Expand partnerships for designing and developing training, educational, networking and outreach actions benefiting World Natural Heritage sites and develop pilot initiatives that could attract financing from both public and private sector sources other than the World Heritage Fund; and
- Report on measures taken to implement the abovementioned recommendations, including significant achievements made and difficulties and constraints encountered and proposals for a 3-year work programme, to the twenty-fifth session of the Committee in 2001.
XV.11 The Chairperson requested that the Centre should also, in accordance with the proposal made by the Delegate of South Africa, place significant emphasis on the Training of Trainers as a way to ensure sustainability of knowledge and skills transfer and a more cost-effective use of the limited resources provided by the World Heritage Fund for training specialists in natural heritage.Read more about the decision
VI.14 The Committee,
having recognized that regional action plans had already contributed in a tangible manner towards the implementation of the Global Strategy,
adopted under Chapter II for the Budget for 2000 an amount of US$ 278,000, of which US$ 20,000 for Central and Eastern Europe, and under Thematic Studies US$ 40,000 for ICOMOS and US$ 15,000 for IUCN.
It also took note of Information Documents WHC-99/CONF.209/INF.8, WHC-99/CONF.209/INF.11, WHC-99/CONF.209/INF.14 and WHC-99/CONF.209/INF.16.Read more about the decision
X.18 At the end of the debate, the Director of the Centre promised that the actions for the year 2000 would be reviewed in the light of the discussion. The Chairperson commended the regional approach that would redress the imbalances of the World Heritage List. The prioritized action plan prepared as a follow-up of the Consultative Body concerning the implementation of the Global Strategy was endorsed. The activities foreseen in the regional action plans for 1999 presented under Section VI of the Working Document, were approved, and in addition: US$ 15,000 for IUCN and US$ 23,000 for ICOMOS.
Summary Workplan of regional activities approved in 1999 under Chapter II: Global Strategy
Publication of report and follow-up of the 4th Global Strategy Meeting
Regional Thematic Global Strategy Meeting on Cultural Landscapes(40,000 approved in 1997)
2. ARAB STATES
Second Regional Study on the identification of potential natural sites
(Publication and translation of the report in Arabic)
Seminar on Monuments (Publication and distribution of the report in Arabic)
Publication and distribution of the report of the Central Asian Archaeological Heritage meeting
Completion of ongoing analysis on representativity of World Heritage Cultural sites in Asia in cooperation with ICOMOS and ICCROM
Mission and case study on Afghanistan to address issue of cultural properties in situation of armed conflicts
Regional review of all protected areas including South Pacific Regional Environment Programme (SPREP) initiated Community Based Conservation Area (CBCAs)
Support to Pacific participants to attend regional workshops and meetings
5. EUROPE AND NORTH AMERICA
Expert meeting on Cultural Landscapes for Eastern and Central Europe and Baltic States
6. LATIN AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN
Expert meeting on Cultural Landscapes in the Andean region (Publication of report in Spanish)
Expert meeting on Cultural Landscapes in Central America
The Cultural Heritage of the Caribbean and the World Heritage Convention(Publication and distribution of the report)
Compilation of existing studies of Caribbean natural and cultural heritage
TOTAL BY REGION
- Arab States
- Europe and North America
- Latin America and the Caribbean
The Committee took note of Information Documents WHC-97/CONF.208/INF.7, WHC-97/CONF.208/INF.8, WHC-97/CONF.INF.12 and WHC-97/CONF.208/INF.13.
IX.1 The Global Strategy approved by the Committee in 1994 aims at improving the representivity of cultural heritage on the World Heritage List and redressing the imbalance due to the pre-eminence of Europe, Christianity and monumental architecture, as well as to encourage the nomination of properties illustrating archaeological, industrial and technical heritage from non-European cultures and, in general, of all living cultures, particularly traditional societies and their many continuing interactions with their natural environment.
IX.2 In its presentation, the Secretariat did not repeat the information contained in Document WHC-97/CONF.208/11 relating to progress on the Global Strategy for cultural heritage, but took this opportunity to evaluate the activities undertaken in Africa since the adoption in 1994 of the Global Strategy. From 1995 to 1997, the World Heritage Centre, in close co-operation with ICOMOS, organized two expert meetings to which representatives of States Parties and non-States Parties to the Convention were invited, as well as two workshops during which the participants were able to practise the preparation of tentative lists and proposals for the inscription of properties. Although the methodology adopted had enhanced the knowledge of the procedures in force, and fifteen of the thirty States Parties had already prepared tentative lists and a calendar of proposals for inscription on the World Heritage List up until the year 2001 had been prepared, the Secretariat underlined the specificity of the situation and drew attention to the conditions for "preparatory assistance", for which many countries from the region could not apply until they have paid their outstanding dues to the World Heritage Fund. Furthermore, during meetings and workshops, African experts emphasized that the ceiling of "preparatory assistance" (US$ 15,000) was insufficient to prepare nomination dossiers, because at many African sites, listed on the tentative lists, the costs for the gathering of documentation, preparation of conservation and management plans, was far superior to US$ 15,000. Therefore, complementary measures appear indispensable to assist these countries in the efficient implementation of the Global Strategy. This situation implies a proposal for a coherent training policy in co-operation with ICCROM. To achieve this, the Secretariat also proposes to use UNESCO offices.
IX.3 During the debate, the African delegates recognized the pertinence of the methodology proposed and suggested associating their efforts with those undertaken by the World Heritage Centre to encourage countries south of the Sahara to ratify the 1972 Convention. The Delegate of Benin suggested that the Director of the Centre be a member of the UNESCO Delegation participating at the Organization for African Unity (OAU) to inform as many States as possible about World Heritage. The Observer of South Africa proposed that the African States Parties should, in the same way, create national committees for the implementation of the 1972 Convention, so as to activate the process from the establishment of tentative lists through to the preparation of the nomination dossier. The delegates reiterated their support for the training strategy adopted at the twentieth session of the Committee (Merida, 1996). It was also recommended to invite experts from all Sub-saharan African regions to the expert meeting on African Cultural Landscape, scheduled in 1998, in Kenya. Finally, the suggestion to organize a meeting on Global Strategy in Western Africa was welcome and the Republic of Benin offered to host it in autumn 1998, instead of 1999, as it was originally foreseen.
IX.4 Concerning the implementation of the Global Strategy in the Pacific, it was noted that there are still very few States Parties to the Convention in the Pacific. The Director of the Centre informed the Committee that the need to encourage greater adherence to, and implementation of the Convention in the Pacific has been included as part of UNESCO's new strategic approach called "Focus on the Pacific". The Delegate of Australia gave her encouragement and support for Global Strategy work in the Pacific stressing that the region's cultural and natural heritage is currently under-represented on the List. She made reference to the Global Strategy work already performed in the Pacific, most notably the meeting held in Suva, Fiji, in association with the Fiji Museum, which was already leading to tangible results (WHC-97/CONF.208/INF.8). She supported the proposal to hold a follow-up meeting for the Pacific in 1998, indicating that Australia would be active in assisting in the meeting and asked that a progress report on Global Strategy work in the Pacific be presented to the next session of the Committee. The Delegate of the Republic of Korea suggested that the Committee members of the region, Australia, Japan, Republic of Korea and Thailand, participate in the meeting together with experts, to undertake joint efforts regarding those small islands' Governments of the Pacific, especially noting that the main objective of the proposed Global Strategy meeting is to encourage those Pacific islands to accede to the Convention. IUCN asked that the meeting address both cultural and natural heritage as they are so intrinsically linked in the Pacific.
IX.5 The Committee took note of the comparative studies which were undertaken by ICOMOS in 1997 on Fossil Hominid sites, Iberian Colonial towns in Latin America, Islamic military sites in Central and South Asia, and Castles of the Teutonic Order in Central and Eastern Europe.
IX.6 The Committee recalled that the Global Strategy was originally devised with particular reference to cultural heritage and that in March 1996 an expert meeting in the Parc National de la Vanoise, France, affirmed the application of the Global Strategy for natural heritage.
The Committee noted that thematic studies (e.g. on tropical forests and wetlands, coastal and marine ecosystems) funded by an earmarked contribution from Australia, have commenced in co-operation with IUCN. The Committee was informed of a number of actions concerning geological heritage, including a thematic brochure on World Heritage sites of geological value and co-ordination meetings with the International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS), the International Geological Correlation Programme (IGCP) and the UNESCO Division of Earth Sciences. The Committee noted that within the framework of the Global Strategy a study was carried out in 1997 on the "Identification of potential natural heritage sites in the Arab Countries" and was provided to States Parties in the Arab Region.
IX.7 The Committee took note of the preliminary Draft European Landscape Convention (Resolution 53/97 of the Council of Europe) and Recommendation 31 of the Council of Europe's "Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe" (CLRAE) presented in Information Document WHC-97/CONF.208/INF.12. The Committee welcomed the complementarity of the World Heritage Convention and the proposed Preliminary Draft of the European Landscape Convention and the synergy of efforts. The Committee was informed of the "Intergovernmental Consultation Conference on the Preliminary Draft European Landscape Convention" organized by CLRAE and to be held from 2 to 4 April 1998 in Florence (Italy) and welcomed the initiative by CLRAE to enhance the identification, protection, conservation, presentation and transmission to future generations of European landscapes. The Delegate of France underlined that new instruments should find their place among existing legal instruments, on the national, regional and international level and that a collaboration between the World Heritage Committee, the Centre and the new European instrument should be organized. The Committee recalled that at its twentieth session in December 1996, it approved US $30,000 for an Expert Meeting on cultural landscapes of the Andean Region to guide States Parties in the identification, selection and presentation of cultural landscapes in the Andes. The meeting will be held in Peru in May 1998.
IX.8 The Committee recalled that a preliminary consultation meeting took place in conjunction with the World Heritage Bureau session, on 28 June 1997, to further define the objectives and agenda for the Global Strategy Expert Meeting on Natural and Cultural Heritage to be held in 1998. The report of the consultation meeting was included as ANNEX XI of the report of the twenty-first session of the Bureau of the World Heritage Committee (WHC-97/CONF.208/4A). The Secretariat informed the Committee that co-ordination meetings were held with the advisory bodies and with colleagues from the Culture and Science Sectors of UNESCO. These meetings reviewed replies to the circular letter on the Selection of National Experts, and refined the agenda items into more detailed terms of reference, noting in particular that the meeting should focus on an analysis of issues through case studies. The Committee also recalled that it approved US $30,000 for this activity at its twentieth session in December 1996 and welcomed the offer by the Government of the Netherlands to host the Expert Meeting.
IX.9 While referring to the Global Strategy meeting scheduled in South East Asia in 1999, the Committee stressed the importance of wood architectural heritage and its conservation. In addition, it emphasized the relation of this heritage to ritual ceremonies and therefore its link to intangible heritage. The Observer of India underlined the importance of living cultures and the suggested meeting in Central Asia and offered to host a Global Strategy meeting for South Asia in India in 1999.Read more about the decision
IX.10 The Committee reviewed the proposals for Global Strategy activities for 1998 and 1999. The Committee approved the following budget including the items for IUCN and ICOMOS, foreseen in Chapter II of WHC-97/CONF.208/13:
Summary Budget for the Global Strategy, 1998 to 1999
Expert Meeting on Cultural Landscapes in Africa, Kenya
Global Strategy Meeting for the Caribbean region, Martinique
Follow-up Global Strategy meeting for the Pacific, Vanuatu
Sub-regional meeting on Central Asian cultural heritage
Global Strategy meeting, Western Africa, Benin
Africa Revisited Publication
IUCN Ecosystem subregional and thematic studies for natural heritage
Global Strategy meeting, South-East Asia
Global Strategy meeting, South Asia, India (to be approved by the 22nd session of the World Heritage Committee)
Regional Thematic Study Meeting: European Cultural Landscapes of Outstanding Universal Value (Vienna, Austria, 21 April 1996)
IX.7 The Committee recalled that following the Action Plan for Cultural Landscapes as adopted by the seventeenth session of the World Heritage Committee held in Cartagena in December 1993, a series of regional thematic study meetings were organized in 1994 and 1995. In 1996 a regional thematic study meeting on European Cultural Landscapes of Outstanding Universal Value was organized by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre, the advisory bodies and the Austrian National Commission for UNESCO in cooperation with Austria Nostra in Vienna (Austria) on 21 April 1996. The Committee noted that the experts reaffirmed the three cultural landscape categories for the European Region and addressed the identification, assessment and evaluation of European cultural landscapes in close cooperation with the Council of Europe and its proposed European Landscape Convention.Read more about the decision
C.1 Expert Meeting on Evaluation of general principles and criteria for nominations of natural World Heritage sites (Pare national de la Vanoise, France, 22 to 24 March 1996)
IX.8 The Committee commended the French authorities for hosting the expert meeting on "Evaluation of general principles and criteria for nominations of natural World Heritage sites" from 22 to 24 March 1996 at the Parc National de la Vanoise (France) and took note of the full report of the meeting presented in Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.8 in English and French.
IX.9 The Australian Delegation endorsed the results of the La Vanoise meeting and indicated Australia's support for the proposed Global Strategy for Natural Heritage. Australia offered to contribute US$ 20,000 towards the undertaking of such a Strategy.
IX.10 The expert group reviewed the natural heritage concepts, the coverage of natural sites on the World Heritage List as well as its balance, manageability and credibility.
IX.11 The expert group emphasized the unifying concept of World Heritage embracing both cultural and natural heritage as outlined in the text of the Convention and the need for an overarching Global Strategy for both natural and cultural heritage. As a result of the discussions, the experts recommended changes to the Operational Guidelines, which were presented in Working Document WHC-96/CONF.201/18.
IX.12 The Committee recalled that the Bureau at its twentieth session did not discuss the recommendations of the experts in detail and that a Circular Letter No. 5/96 was sent to all States Parties of the World Heritage Convention together with the report of the expert meeting. The Secretariat informed the Committee that replies to this Circular Letter were received from the following States Parties: Canada, Colombia, Croatia, Ireland, Lebanon, Morocco, Niger, Norway, Pakistan, Spain and Switzerland, as well as by ICOMOS Poland.
IX.13 The Committee took note that the replies were of quite substantive nature and that general agreement and support for the recommendations were expressed by Colombia, Croatia, Ireland, Lebanon, Morocco, Norway, Pakistan, Spain and Switzerland. Several States Parties underlined however, the complexity of the issue, in particular the problem of the application of "outstanding universal value", the usefulness of one set of criteria, the definition of universal beauty and the application of the conditions of integrity to all sites.
IX.14 Several delegates commented on the report of La Vanoise and indicated that the interaction between culture and nature is in the spirit of the Convention and that the report of the experts is extremely interesting. There is however a more in-depth discussion needed on (a) the application of the "conditions of integrity" versus the "test of authenticity", (b) the question of a unified or a harmonized set of criteria, and (c) the notion of outstanding universal value and its application in different regional and cultural contexts. The Delegate of Italy proposed to involve other experts and offered to select experts from his country.
IX.15 The Delegate of Canada proposed a truly joint meeting of cultural and natural heritage experts to consider these questions and to ensure that all advisory bodies be involved. This proposal was adopted.Read more about the decision
C.2 Expert Meeting on Geological and Fossil Sites held at the 30th International Geological Congress (Beijing, China, 8 to 10 August 1996)
IX.16 The Committee recalled that the Bureau at its eighteenth session in July 1994, had asked for an expert meeting on geological and fossil sites. This expert meeting was held at the 30th International Geological Congress (Beijing, China, 8 to 10 August 1996) in order to enhance the preparation of a comparative global study of Earth's evolutionary history. The meeting was organized by the UNESCO Division of Earth Sciences, the World Heritage Centre in cooperation with IUCN and IUGS (International Union of Geological Sciences). The Canadian authorities provided financial support for participants' travel to the expert meeting.
IX.17 The Committee took note of the full report of this expert group which is contained in Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.10 and the annexed report "Earth's Geological History. A conceptual framework for assessment of World Heritage fossil site nominations". The Delegate of Italy noted that the list of sites proposed in this study is not exhaustive. Following the experts' recommendations, the Committee (a) encouraged States Parties to the Convention to prepare inventories of their national geological heritage, and further to consider identifying from these inventories sites for national tentative lists for World Heritage, (b) that IUGS, through the Global Geosite Working Group, make a first assessment of the values of these sites and compile a global comparative inventory and database, (c) invited IUCN to cooperate closely with IUGS and other NGOs as appropriate for further evaluation of sites proposed for World Heritage listing and (d) encouraged in-depth thematic studies, taking into account the important study prepared by Mr Wells on fossil sites.Read more about the decision
D.1 Global Strategy for Cultural Heritage
IX.18 The Committee approved a Global Strategy meeting for the Pacific Region in 1997, and the principle of a meeting for the Caribbean region with the French Ministry of Education nationale et d'Enseignement Superieur et de la Recherche in 1998. The Committee allocated an amount of US$ 40,000 under Chapter 11 of the budget for the Pacific region.
D.2 Global Strategy for Natural Heritage
IX.19 The Committee decided that, in view of the Vanoise conclusions on strengthening the links between cultural and natural values, and in the spirit of the Global strategy adopted at the eighteenth session of the Committee in Phuket, a regionally balanced workshop of experts from both cultural and natural fields be organized in 1997. The Committee allocated an amount of US$ 30,000 under Chapter II of the budget for this Workshop.
D.3 Thematic Studies
i) Expert Meeting on Cultural Landscapes of the Andes
IX.20 Following regional thematic study meetings on specific aspects of cultural landscapes in the Asia Pacific Region and Europe, the Committee approved holding an expert meeting on the cultural landscapes of the Andes in 1997 to guide States Parties in the region in the identification, selection and presentation of cultural landscapes in the Andean Region. The Committee allocated an amount of US$ 30,000 under Chapter II of the budget for this meeting.
ii) Expert Meeting on Cultural Landscapes in Africa
IX.21 Following recommendations by the sub-regional training seminar held at La Tapoa, Niger, in September-October 1996, the Committee approved holding an expert meeting on cultural landscapes in Africa in 1998.
IX.22 The Committee took note of the ICOMOS document on Comparative Studies (Information, Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.11) and its results.Read more about the decision
A.1 Follow up to the Harare Meeting (1995)
IX.1 The proceedings of the First Global strategy meeting held in Harare (Zimbabwe) from 11 to 13 October 1995, were published as an illustrated document disseminated in Africa through UNESCO Offices and National Commissions for UNESCO. As a result of this meeting and thanks to preparatory assistance, Zimbabwe organized another sub-regional meeting in November 1996, to harmonize the tentative lists, and which was attended by ten countries. The experts, who had already participated in the 1995 meeting, undertook to finalize their tentative lists and to send them to the World Heritage Centre at the beginning of 1997.
A.2 Second Global Strategy Meeting (Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, 29 July-1 August 1996)
IX.2 This meeting, decided by the World Heritage Committee during its nineteenth session, was prepared by the Centre and ICOMOS. Its goal was to improve the representativity of the World Heritage List. It was preceded by a meeting, on 6 May 1996, of an international Scientific Committee.
IX.3 The Addis Ababa meeting was attended by representatives from seven countries (Chad, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, Niger and Uganda). It was organized around four themes:
- The Convention, the notion of cultural heritage today and African heritage
- Archaeological heritage
- Historical heritage, human settlements and living cultures
- Religious places, places of technical production, cultural itineraries and trade routes.
IX.4 The African experts presented a report on major cultural heritage in their countries, emphasizing important sites. They confirmed and illustrated the extraordinary wealth and diversity of cultural heritage of this regional of Africa. Through the examples presented significant groupings became evident. Three of these types of cultural sites requiring specific approaches were identified during discussions:
- archaeological and historical heritage
- traditional architecture and material traces of living non-monumental cultures, including technical heritage and unbuilt sacred places
- routes, itineraries, vast natural zones where traditional populations live.
IX.5 At the end of this meeting, the participants concluded that it was unnecessary presently to modify the cultural criteria in their actual form, but that in the application of the Convention account should be taken of: i) the total interaction of the nature-culture continuum in African societies; ii) the spiritual and sacred heritage and its physical supports; iii) the specificities of cultural landscapes and exchange routes in Africa. They thanked the Committee for their assistance in the organization of the meeting which allowed them to become more familiar with the Convention and provide a basis for reflection concerning the specificities of African cultural heritage.
IX.6 Publication of the proceedings of the meeting in the form of a bilingual scientific publication, in collaboration with the African Research Centre of the University of Paris I is under preparation. The synthetic report of the Addis Abeba meeting was distributed as Information Document WHC-96/CONF.201/INF.7.Read more about the decision
XI.3 The Committee considered that in 1996 priority should continue to be given to African cultural heritage and a second subregional meeting would be held in Ethiopia concentrating on the Sudano-sahelian world and the Horn of Africa. The committee took note that in 1997, the cultural heritage of the Caribbean would be the subject of a subregional meeting.Read more about the decision
XI.7 The Secretariat presented the regional thematic studies carried out in 1995 and the Committee took note of the detailed reports contained in information documents INF.8 and INF.9.
- "Regional Thematic Study Meeting on Asian Rice Culture and its Terrace Landscapes (Philippines, 28 March to 4 April 1995)
- "Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop on Associative Cultural Landscapes" (Australia, 27 to 29 April 1995).
XI.10 The Committee took note of the action taken by both the Secretariat and IUCN concerning fossil and geological heritage within an overall Global Strategy for natural heritage. The committee furthermore took note of a "World Heritage session" foreseen during the International Geological Congress to be held in Beijing in 1996. Several delegates noted the importance of linking the Global Strategy for natural and cultural heritage.Read more about the decision
X.1 At its seventeenth session in Cartagena, the Committee requested the World Heritage Centre and ICOMOS to continue their efforts in preparing a conceptual framework for "a global study", in order to advance in defining a concept and a methodology which could be widely accepted by the scientific community.
X.2 Consequently, the Centre and ICOMOS organized jointly at UNESCO, from 20 to 22 June 1994, a first meeting of experts representing different regions of the world and different disciplines concerned (specialists in cultural heritage, anthropologists, art and architecture historians, archaeologists, etc.) with the objective of reviewing the issues and considering all the different approaches, and especially all the work and contributions made to date, in an attempt to define a conceptual framework, a methodology and common goals.
X.3 The Vice-President of ICOMOS, Ms Joan Domicelj, presented to the Bureau at its eighteenth session the report of this meeting of experts, as well as a major outline of its recommendations to the Committee, in order to implement a Global strategy to ameliorate the representativity of the List. These recommendations have been included "in extenso" in document WHC-94/CONF.003/INF.6.
X.4 Having taken note of the Secretariat's report concerning the proposals made by the experts, and its presentation of different thematic meetings which took place in 1994 on Heritage Canals (Canada), Routes as a Part of our Cultural Heritage (Spain) and Authenticity (Japan), the Committee adopted the following three proposals concerning work to be undertaken in 1995:
1) the revision of certain criteria for the inscription of cultural properties on the World Heritage List, based on Recommendation 7 proposed by the experts (see section XIV of the Report).
2) the participation of one member of the World Heritage Centre or of ICOMOS at future regional or thematic meetings, in order to present to them the substance of the Global Strategy, place the discussions in the wider framework of current scientific thought concerning the concept of cultural heritage, and to identify potential partners for future regional meetings of a specific nature;
3) the allocation of an amount of US $ 40.000 for the organization, in cooperation with ICOMOS, and on a regional basis, of a first scientific meeting in Africa with States Parties and those that are not yet party to the Convention, which would deal with African cultural heritage and the Convention. The Committee agreed to allocate also US $ 5.000 for the preparation of this meeting. This meeting will deal with various types of cultural properties which presently are not represented on the List or inadequately so. The Committee also allocated an amount of US $ 30.000 for the organization, in collaboration with the National Commission of Philippines, ICOMOS, IUCN/ENPPA and UNESCO Regional Offices, a regional meeting on cultural landscapes of rice terraces of Asia and the Pacific.
X.5 The representative of ICOMOS stated that its cooperation with the Centre was excellent, particularly as regards the meeting of experts held in June 1994. He expressed his wish that the implementation of the Global strategy would be done jointly in 1995 by the two institutions, as this action is for ICOMOS a part of a global scientific programme which includes other themes for reflection.
X.6 At the suggestion of the German Delegation, the Committee adopted the following text as the basis for future deliberations by the Committee on the Global strategy:
"As . a follow-up of the decisions of the Committee during the previous years, several initiatives were launched to improve the implementation of the convention with regard to cul tural properties. One of these initiatives was a working group on the Global strategy, taking place in Paris in July 1994 (see working document CONF.003.INF.6.) For the cultural sites this document stresses imbalances on the List between regions of the world, types of monuments and period but this is not reflected for the natural sites in this working document. To reduce these imbalances for natural properties as well, the following measures would seem to be adequate:
1) expansion of Documents CONF.003/INF.6 and CONF. 003/6 to include an equal emphasis on natural properties;
2) adjustment of the formal and scientific criteria for the evaluation of nominated cultural and natural sites respectively, taking into consideration also the cultural landscape approach;
3) giving priority to thematic studies on the main types of ecosystems and developing strategies to implement the results without delay;
4) reconsideration of the procedure for the assessment of nominated natural' sites with special respect to the term "integrity."
To facilitate this, a specialists' meeting should be organized in the first half of 1995."
X.7 The Chair asked the opinion of the Director of the Centre if it would be possible to organize such a expert meeting. The Director responded by warmly welcoming this suggestion and noted that if the Centre had a budget of USD 20,000 put at its disposal, it could organize such a meeting. The Director also called to the Committee's attention the relevance of such a study to Mixed sites.
X.8 The Delegate of France, explained that in order to understand the concern expressed in the document prepared by the German Delegation and which met with the approval of the French Delegation, it must be recalled that the imbalance noted is partly due to the decisions taken during the sixteenth session of the Committee at Santa Fe:
- deletion of criterion (ii) for cultural properties (interaction between man and nature);
- modification of cultural criteria to allow the inscription of cultural landscapes, the recognition of which had been strongly endorsed by France.
He indicated that the "natural" part of cultural landscapes was not sufficiently taken into account and that it would be appropriate to place more emphasis on paragraph 38 of the Guidelines. He suggested that in the future ICOMOS and IUCN proceed with a joint evaluation of properties proposed for inscription as cultural landscapes.
X.9 Several other delegates, including those from the United States of America, Japan, 'Italy and Niger expressed their support for the German proposal for a expert working group on natural and mixed sites. The United States Delegate remarked on the importance of establishing computerized data bases for sites. The Delegate from Niger expressed his hope that, eventually, separate criteria for Natural and Cultural sites could be eliminated in favour of an unified set of criteria applicable for all types of World Heritage sites.
X.10 Because of time constraints items D, E and F of this agenda item could not be considered by the eighteenth session of the Committee and were postponed for consideration by the nineteenths session of the Bureau.Read more about the decision