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Session 1: Introduction to Cultural Mapping

This session introduces what cultural mapping is, how UNESCO became involved and the lessons learnt. In reference to UNESCO's 2002-2007 medium strategy which entails the integration of cultural pluralism and intercultural dialogue in the development of indigenous peoples, cultural mapping in the context of empowering indigenous communities is a viable technique, tool and methodology that allows to elucidate indigenous knowledge and create media that permit different voices and cultural systems to enter into dialogue with one another. Mapping can express many types of relations not just in the physical and natural world but in the spiritual world as well.

 

However, it is imperative for the indigenous peoples to play a dynamic role in determining what type of map, methodology used in mapping, and what kind of information should be mapped. This is because the end purpose is not just to "map" and record/collect indigenous knowledge but the whole process of intergenerational dialogue about the knowledge that is shared, transmission of local knowledge systems, and cultural revitalization.

 

For more information on cultural mapping and UNESCO's future challenges concerning cultural mapping, access to the presentation of Susanne Schnuttgen from UNESCO Cultural Pluralism and Dialogue Section (Paris) here.