An International Scientific Committee of
ICOMOS

Posts Tagged ‘Heritage management’

The Subtle Power of Intangible Heritage

Cultural policy can contribute to social and economic development by growing our cultural capital, promoting local identity and promoting global cultural diversity. Tangible and intangible heritage forms a crucial part of this cultural capital and needs to be safeguarded. At the International Network on Cultural Policy (INCP-RIPC) meeting in Cape Town in October 2002, member states decided to adopt and to implement national policies to protect and promote cultural heritage. South Africa and Senegal agreed to write a research report analysing the legal and financial instruments currently employed by countries and regions to safeguard their intangible heritage.
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Revising the Burra Charter: Australia ICOMOS updates its guidelines for conservation practice

This paper outlines the revisions made in 1999 to the Burra Charter, the core doctrine for heritage conservation in Australia that was first adopted by Australia ICOMOS in 1979. It examines the reasons why changes were needed, including broadened perceptions of heritage, new understandings of heritage significance, and recognition of the need for community input into conservation decisions about its heritage. The review process, which took five years, changed its procedures halfway through after members of Australia ICOMOS roundly rejected a draft, while agreeing that a revision should still take place. Following a thorough consultative process with members, the text of the 1999 revision of the Charter was resoundingly endorsed (the text is included here as an Appendix). The paper describes how the revised Charter differs from the previous text. The changes lie primarily in the recognition that heritage value, or significance, may be embodied in the uses, associations and meanings of a place, in addition to its physical fabric. Other key changes include incorporation of a flowchart explaining the conservation planning process; the seeking of community input; and the recognition that interpretation is an integral part of good heritage management practice.
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Intangible Heritage in Conservation Management Planning: the case of Robben Island

Robben Island Museum officially commemorates ‘the triumph of the human spirit over adversity’, relating especially to the period of political imprisonment between 1961 and 1991 when Robben Island was most notorious as a political prison for the leaders of the anti‐apartheid struggle. Robben Island became a World Heritage Site in December 1999 because of its universal symbolic significance—its intangible heritage. This paper explores the implications for conservation management planning of interpreting and managing the intangible heritage associated with such sites. Examples will be drawn from the conservation planning exercise undertaken by the Robben Island Museum between 2000 and 2002. The paper will look specifically at how Robben Island’s symbolic significance has been defined and how competing interpretations should be included in the management plan. It then discusses the challenges around managing historic fabric whose significance is defined as primarily symbolic, and ways of safeguarding the intangible heritage associated with it.
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