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Old Towns of Djenné

Factors affecting the property in 1998*
  • Interpretative and visitation facilities
  • Management systems/ management plan
  • Solid waste
International Assistance: requests for the property until 1998
Requests approved: 1 (from 1981-1981)
Total amount approved : 7,977 USD
Missions to the property until 1998**
Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 1998

In close co-operation with the village populations adjacent to the archaeological sites, and the administrative offices, the Cultural Mission of Djenne has carried out, since 1994, information, awareness-building and education activities with the local population, stressing the imperative need to preserve and promote cultural heritage.

Following an inventory of the conservation of the monuments of the Town of Djenne, the Cultural Mission had undertaken the restoration of some monuments, and, thanks to Support participants of the international youth workshop, held in December 1996, the inner walls of Konofia were restored.

Co-operation between Mali and The Netherlands resulted in a project comprising the restoration of 168 dwellings in the old quarter, which began in October 1996. This project, for a duration of six years, has the following essential objectives:

-       safeguard of cultural heritage

-       strengthen cultural identity through the promotion of the significance of earth architecture

-       ensure training in the field of the restoration of historical monuments, whilst respecting the local construction techniques,

-       contribute towards the economic development of the populations.

At the request of the Minister for Culture, a project entitled « Reappropriation and improvement of the urban area of Djenne » with the objective of an integrated and concerted development of cultural tourism, will permit the implementation of harmonized action. This would concern the improvement of solid and liquid waste management and their co-ordination with other conservation projects carried out through co-operation between the Cultural Mission of Djenne and The Netherlands. The project, which is decentralized to Dakar, will be financed up to 100 million CFA, in the framework of a shared phase with local populations. The project is part of the network of activities implemented by the Human Habitat Unit of the Social Sciences Sector of UNESCO.

In the framework of the Third Urban Project, the execution of a global plan for the conservation of the old Town of Djenne is foreseen. This plan will comprise activities to improve sanitation, the construction of the Museum, and the construction of green areas, all of which will contribute towards the development of sustainable tourism to benefit the local population.

The Bureau:

(i) congratulated the Mali authorities for the efforts undertaken to preserve this site inscribed on the World Heritage List;

(ii) invited the Mali authorities, in accordance with paragraph 56 of the Operational Guidelines for the Implementation of the World Heritage Convention to:
           i) co-ordinate international assistance, and
           ii) inform the World Heritage Committee, through the UNESCO Secretariat, of their intentions to undertake or to authorize, within the area protected by the Convention, major restoration work;

(iii) encouraged the authorities to implement awareness building activities among the population.


Summary of the interventions
This report was not discussed during the World Heritage Committee session.
Decisions adopted by the Committee in 1998

No draft decision

Report year: 1998
Date of Inscription: 1988
Category: Cultural
Criteria: (iii)(iv)
Danger List (dates): 2016-present
Documents examined by the Committee
arrow_circle_right 22COM (1998)

* : The threats indicated are listed in alphabetical order; their order does not constitute a classification according to the importance of their impact on the property.
Furthermore, they are presented irrespective of the type of threat faced by the property, i.e. with specific and proven imminent danger (“ascertained danger”) or with threats which could have deleterious effects on the property’s Outstanding Universal Value (“potential danger”).

** : All mission reports are not always available electronically.