World Heritage site managers of the Latin America and the Caribbean region met online for in the Framework of the Third Cycle of Periodic Reporting
In the framework of the Third Cycle of the Periodic Reporting Exercise in Latin America and the Caribbean (LAC), which started in September 2021, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre has organized two workshops (one in English and one in Spanish) for World Heritage site managers in the region.
These meetings, held respectively on 8 March (English) and 10 March (Spanish) 2022 online on the Zoom platform, aimed to provide practical advice, clarification and guidance to all site managers, in particular on the completion of Section II of the Periodic Reporting questionnaire on the implementation of the World Heritage Convention at World Heritage property-level.
The Periodic Reporting process is one of the fundamental conservation monitoring mechanisms of the World Heritage Convention. Every six years, States Parties are invited to submit to the World Heritage Committee a Periodic Report on the implementation of the Convention in their territory.
The managers of the 147 World Heritage properties (101 cultural, 38 natural and 8 mixed) in the Latin America and Caribbean region are were invited to evaluate the situation of their respective property by means of an online questionnaire, to be submitted by the end of July 2022.
In total, approximately 200 participants met during the two sessions and the meetings were also attended by representatives of the Advisory Bodies, UNESCO category II centres and UNESCO field offices in the LAC region. It was also noted that a number of national focal points actively joined the meetings.
The World Heritage Committee,
- Having examined document WHC/23/45.COM/10B,
- Recalling Decisions 41 COM 10A, 42 COM 10A, 43 COM 10B and 44 COM 10D adopted at its 41st (Krakow, 2017), 42nd (Manama, 2018), 43rd (Baku, 2019) and extended 44th (Fuzhou/Online, 2021) sessions respectively,
- Commends the efforts of States Parties in the Latin America and the Caribbean region in the completion and submission of Section I, and the very high level of completion and submission of Section II of the Periodic Reporting questionnaire;
- Thanks the Regional World Heritage Institute in Zacatecas (Mexico) and the Regional Heritage Management Training Centre ‘Lucio Costa’ (Brazil), and Advisory Bodies in facilitating the Periodic Reporting exercise in the region;
- Welcomes with satisfaction the Third Cycle Regional Report in Latin America and the Caribbean and encourages the States Parties to widely disseminate it among all relevant stakeholders in the region;
- Takes note of the planned publication of the Third Cycle Periodic Report in the Latin America and the Caribbean region in the World Heritage paper series, subject to the availability of funding resources, and invites States Parties to contribute financially for this purpose;
- Also commends the joint efforts made by the national Focal Points and World Heritage site managers, the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies in producing an Action Plan framework in an adaptable format, in order to facilitate its appropriation and implementation by the States Parties;
- Endorses the Third Cycle Regional Framework Action Plan developed in cooperation with all States Parties and other heritage stakeholders in the region and notes with satisfaction that the priorities align with those set out in the Declaration unanimously adopted at the UNESCO World Conference on Cultural Policies and Sustainable Development – MONDIACULT 2022 (Mexico City, 2022) and the reflections undertaken at the international conference ‘The Next 50 - The Future of World Heritage in Challenging Times, Enhancing Resilience and Sustainability’ (Delphi, 2022);
- Encourages States Parties to appropriate the Third Cycle Regional Framework Action Plan into their national and sub-regional heritage strategies and policies, and requests the World Heritage Centre, in collaboration with the Advisory Bodies, the Category 2 Centres, and other partners, to support States Parties in its implementation;
- Also requests the UNESCO World Heritage Centre to monitor the implementation of the Framework Regional Action Plan in view of preparing a mid-cycle assessment report to be presented to World Heritage Committee after three years.
The World Heritage Committee,
- Having examined Document WHC/17/41.COM/10A,
- Recalling Decisions 38 COM 5F.2, 39 COM 10B.5, and 40 COM 10A, adopted at its 38th (Doha, 2014), 39th (Bonn, 2015) and 40th (Istanbul/UNESCO, 2016) sessions respectively,
- Notes with appreciation the successful implementation of the Reflection Period by the Secretariat, in consultation with the Advisory Bodies, and the use of innovative and cost-effective working methods;
- Commends the Periodic Reporting Reflection Expert Group for the extensive and in-depth work carried out;
- Thanks all States Parties who volunteered to participate in the Testing Phase for their active engagement in the Periodic Reporting Reflection;
- Welcomes the recommendations and improvements proposed with regard to the format, content, relevance, analysis and use of data in the Periodic Reporting process;
- Also welcomes the inclusion in the revised questionnaire of questions relating to synergies with other international instruments and programmes on cultural and natural heritage; questions relating to the implementation of the 1972 UNESCO Recommendation concerning the Protection, at National level, of the Cultural and Natural Heritage and to the 2011 Recommendation on the Historic Urban Landscape, as well as questions assessing the implementation of the World Heritage Policy for integrating a sustainable development perspective into the processes of the World Heritage Convention, and of other key policies adopted by the World Heritage Committee;
- Further welcomes the development of strengthened and comprehensive indicators to improve follow-up on progress made by State Parties in the implementation of the Convention as well as the 1972 Recommendation concerning the Protection, at National Level, of the Cultural and Natural Heritage, further to the Recommendation of the Evaluation of UNESCO’s Standard-Setting Work of the Culture Sector (Part III – 1972 Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage);
- Takes note with appreciation of the analytical framework developed by the Expert Group and decides that it will be used as a global template for the analysis of data, for all regions, during the Third Cycle of Periodic Reporting;
- Also takes note of the feasibility study concerning the production of a global World Heritage report and recommends that further work on the format and resourcing of the report be carried out using responses from States Parties and Site Managers in the first years of the Third Cycle;
- Also decides to maintain the order of regions and the 6-year periodicity of the Periodic Reporting cycles, with one region reporting every year (Arab States, Africa, Asia and the Pacific, Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe and North America) and one year between cycles for a reflection, if necessary, and for the production of a global report on the basis of the outcomes of the cycle across all regions;
- Further decides to officially launch the Third Cycle (2017-2022), but in view of the need to allow sufficient time for appropriate preparation, by the Secretariat, and by the States Parties of the Arab States region, exceptionally postpones the start of the Periodic Reporting of all regions by one year, starting with the Arab States region in 2018, followed by the Africa region in 2019, and so on;
- Encourages the active engagement of the States Parties in the following reporting cycles, and furthermore decides, that, in view of the current financial and human resources constraints of the World Heritage Centre, its role should consist of ensuring a holistic approach across regions, by providing overall coordination, guidance tools and analysis, as well as facilitating a State Party-driven approach, and invites the States Parties to contribute extrabudgetary resources for this purpose, and further decides, in case the resources are insufficient to ensure continuity, to supplement the funding of an extra-budgetary position from the Periodic Reporting budget line in the World Heritage Fund;
- Approves the revised Chapter V of the Operational Guidelines “Periodic Reporting on the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention” and the revised Annex 7 to the Operational Guidelines, on the Format of the Periodic Reporting Questionnaire, contained in Annex IV of Document WHC/17/41.COM/10A.