Theme of 2012 International Training Course
Historic areas with settlements and their surrounding landscape are irreplaceable and highly complex cultural resources that have evolved over time and contain various heritage components such as traditional housing, urban spaces, ecological features and intangible components such as rituals and social activities that have sustained these areas for generations.
However these historic areas are becoming increasingly fragile due to unprecedented transformation processes that have posted grave risks to their heritage values and have increased their vulnerability to natural hazards such as earthquakes, landslides and floods.
Several catastrophic disasters in recent years such as Mumbai floods of 2005, Hurricane Katrina affecting New Orleans in 2005, Christchurch, Haiti and Chile Earthquakes of 2010 and recent Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami and Thailand Floods in 2011 have caused extensive damage to rich cultural heritage located in these areas.
Post disaster recovery of cultural heritage is an extremely difficult and long process that involves not only repair and restoration but also revival and recreation of tangible and intangible heritage that is closely connected to peoples lives. However at the same time, it is also an opportunity to reduce risks of future disasters by putting in place mitigation measures at policy, planning and technological levels through an integrated approach aimed at comprehensive risk management and sustainable development of historic areas. Moreover these should effectively engage various stakeholders at the city, national, regional as well as international levels for protecting cultural heritage in historic areas during such catastrophic situations in the future. This would be the best way for protecting cultural heritage for present and future generations.
Considering these issues and rich lessons from long term recovery of the Great Hanshin Awaji (Kobe) Earthquake of 1995 and the Great East Japan Earthquake and Tsunami of 2011, the theme of the 7th UNESCO Chair International Training Course on Disaster Risk Management of Cultural Heritage would be ‘From Recovery to Risk Reduction for Sustainability of Historic Areas’.
Application Deadline: 31 May 2012 (Closing date has been extended)
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