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Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Cultural Tourism: Opportunities and Challenges

Location: Hue, Viet Nam

Dates: 11-13 December, 2007

Organized by:

·  Hue Monuments Conservation Center (HMCC)
·  Department of National Cultural Heritage, Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Viet Nam
·  Korean Establishment Initiative for the Intangible Heritage Centre for Asia-Pacific (EIIHCAP)
·  Office of the UNESCO Regional Advisor for Culture in Asia and the Pacific
 

Sustainable tourism and cultural tourism have been the focus of countless development programmes, projects and activities in the Asia Pacific region, and have spawned a huge literature. Within this experts meeting, the focus will be on the intersection of intangible heritage and sustainable cultural tourism. One of the key issues to focus on when dealing with sustainable tourism development is the question of how best to strengthen communities’ capacities to control and manage their own Intangible Cultural Heritage in the face of increased tourism. How can we make sure that the Intangible Cultural Heritage practicing communities retain “ownership” of their own Intangible Cultural Heritage, participate actively in decision-making about it, and are empowered to represent themselves both in the political and economic spheres as well as in the representational sphere, where perceptions are shaped and communicated.


Another key issue is how short-term economic benefits to be generated through tourism can contribute as fully as possible to the community’s long-term human development. Capital investment in tourism by bodies external to the concerned communities may not benefit them, yet they themselves may not be in a position to mobilize similar investment capital. What mechanisms could be established to guarantee that the benefits help the communities, while respecting their social, economic and cultural integrity?


Structured around case studies from the region, the meeting aims to provide a platform for experts and practitioners to discuss how best to strengthen communities’ capacities to control and manage their own Intangible Cultural Heritage in the face of increased tourism. The key themes under which the case studies will be organized include:


1.         Handicrafts in the context of sustainable cultural tourism
2.         Performing arts in the context of sustainable cultural tourism
3.         ICH in the context of environmental, agricultural and eco tourism

To download the final report of the meeting, please click here. (PDF format, 6.89 MB)