Lazare Eloundou Assomo
DIRECTOR OF WORLD HERITAGE
Originally from Cameroon, Mr Eloundou Assomo is a graduate in architecture (Grenoble School of Architecture, France) and in urban planning (DEA Grenoble 1). He began his career as an associate researcher at the Centre for Earthen Construction of the Grenoble School of Architecture in 1996. He was then in charge of implementing housing projects in Africa, and then of the pedagogical coordination of the Africa 2009 conservation programme set up by UNESCO’s World Heritage Centre and ICCROM.
He joined UNESCO in 2003 in the Africa Unit of the World Heritage Centre, where he contributed to the creation of the African World Heritage Fund and the development of the World Heritage Earthen Architecture Programme (WHEAP).
From 2008 to 2013, he was Head of the Africa Unit of the World Heritage Centre. During this period, he coordinated several restoration projects in Mozambique, Uganda and Mali, as well as capacity building initiatives in the region. He is the author of the book 'African World Heritage: A Remarkable Diversity', co-authored with Ishanlosen Odiaua and published in 2012 by UNESCO.
In 2013, he joined the UNESCO office in Bamako and became UNESCO’s head representative in Mali in 2014. While the country was hit by a violent armed conflict, he was in charge of the protection of Mali’s cultural heritage. He successfully led the reconstruction of the Timbuktu mausoleums and the safeguarding of ancient manuscripts.
He returned to UNESCO Headquarters in Paris in 2016, initially as Deputy Director of the Heritage Division and of the World Heritage Centre. In 2018, he became Director of the Culture and Emergencies entity, coordinating emergency conservation responses to heritage affected by conflicts and disasters and the restitution of cultural property under the 1970 Convention.
He was appointed Director of World Heritage in December 2021.
- Mozambique : Rehabilitation Project of the San Sebastian Fortress, Island of Mozambique
- Preparatory assistance and technical support for the inscription, conservation and management of the Île de Saint-Louis, Senegal
- Support for African local governments in the field of heritage (EU-AIMF project)
- Support for the establishment of the national inventory of cultural heritage of Senegal
- The restoration of King Gbehanzin Palace – Royal Palaces of Abomey
- UNESCO welcomes restoration of sacred gate of Sidi Yahia in Timbuktu 20-Sep-2016
- Agreement signed for reconstruction of Kasubi Tombs, Uganda 06-Mar-2013
- International experts meeting on earthen architecture: its preservation and potential for the future 14-Dec-2012
- The Africa region celebrates 40th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention 31-Oct-2012
- UNESCO launches Africa Nature programme 08-Oct-2012
- Cape Floral Region Protected Areas get Conservation Boost from World Heritage Centre Partner 14-Oct-2011
- Third sub-regional meeting for 2nd Cycle of World Heritage Periodic Reporting opens in Yaoundé 22-Jun-2010
- Call for project proposals financed by the African World Heritage Fund 21-Jun-2010
- Director-General calls for calm and offers support following fire and subsequent protests at Ugandan World Heritage site 17-Mar-2010
- Pilgrims killed in stampede at Djingareyber Mosque in Timbuktu 26-Feb-2010
- Restoration works continue despite violent storms at the Great Mosque of Djenné 15-Dec-2009
- Devastating fire at the Royal Palaces of Abomey (Benin) 13-Feb-2009
- Joint efforts for the preservation of World Heritage in Mozambique 13-Feb-2009
- Royal Palaces of Abomey and Kathmandu removed from Danger List 25-Jun-2007
- Expert meeting on the global state of conservation challenges for World Heritage properties 13-Apr-2011-15-Apr-2011
- Final meeting of the 2nd Periodic Reporting cycle of the Africa region (restricted access) 14-Feb-2011-17-Feb-2011
- [in French only] Le Roi s'en va-t-en guerre, Exposition gratuite aux Palais Royaux d'Abomey 08-Nov-2010-14-Nov-2010
- Sub-Regional Meeting of Southern Africa 01-Sep-2010-02-Sep-2010
- Launch Meeting of the Second Cycle of the World Heritage Periodic Reporting for Africa 20-Jan-2010-22-Jan-2010
- Consultation Meeting on the Implementation of the World Heritage Earthen Architecture Programme (WHEAP) in the Arab States – Strategies and Approaches 11-Jan-2010-11-Jan-2010
- French premiere of Pierre Guicheney’s film “Lady from Osogbo” at the Musée du Quai Branly, Paris 21-Feb-2008-21-Feb-2008
- Terra 2008: 10th Int'l Conference on Study and Conservation of Earthen Architectural Heritage 01-Feb-2008-05-Feb-2008
- [in French only] AFRICA 2009: 5ème Cours Technique sur l’élaboration des propositions d’inscription de biens culturels sur la Liste du patrimoine mondial 02-Jul-2007-27-Jul-2007