Conferences – Seminars – Workshops

Cultural Tourism for Community Development: 40 Years of the World Heritage Convention – ICOMOS ICTC & ICOMOS Philippines delegates to the ICOMOS International Conference 2012

Our Policy

ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Committee (ICTC) has a policy of working around the globe in partnership with ICOMOS National Committees (NCs) and/or by contributing to international conferences as well as holding our own round table meetings and international expert seminars.

Most recently:

2017Cultural Heritage Conservation & Sustainable Tourism Expert Seminar and International Cultural Tourism Charter Review +20 

ICOMOS ICTC International Expert Symposium & Workshop, Florence, Italy, 18 – 19 May 2017  

This event included keynote speakers Peter DeBrine, World Heritage Sustainable Tourism Project (WHSTP) UNESCO and Jin-Yung Woo  Adviser on Tourism and Culture UNWTO with delegates from Thailand, Mexico, USA and Europe. Following animated debate this two day event has produced a number of outcomes that are on-going. First, the “Florence Declaration” on Cultural Heritage Conservation & Sustainable Tourism for Development  to be presented to ICOMOS 19th General Assembly in Delhi, December 2017; second, reaffirmation of the need to continue the Charter Review process and finally reinforcing the need for further research linking cultural heritage conservation & sustainable tourism to the implementation and measurement of the UNSDGs as a collegiate process with ICOMOS colleagues and with our partner organisations  – UNESCO, UNWTO and IUCN.

2016Reinforcing the role of Cultural Tourism Management Planning to Sustain Biodiversity and Communities at Proposed Indigenous World Heritage Sites 

ICOMOS ICTC Knowledge Café at the IUCN World Congress Planet at the Crossroads, Hawai’i, USA1 – 10 September 2016 

ICTC’s involvement with the nature-culture journey and working with representatives from indigenous communities is long established and is referred to in our 1999 Charter . The significance of these essential interrelationships is highlighted by our recent ICTC research in the Seychelles 2015, Tuscany Italy 2014, Sukhothai Thailand 2013 & Ifugao, Philippines 2012. And the debates have moved on. They have moved centre stage with the adoption of the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030 and publication of ICOMOS’s joint report with IUCN on the Connecting Practice Project which is working towards a connected approach to considering nature and culture under the World Heritage Convention…/wcpa…/linking_culture_nature/ .

2016Who benefits? Who cares? From the Fairy Chimneys to Fairy Tales and Consuming Passions

The Development of Cultural Tourism in Cappadocia National Park UNESCO World Heritage Site & its Surroundings

An exploration of the reconstruction of cultural, natural and historic values of heritage for the visitor economy  co-organised by ICTC & ICOMOS Turkey, 20-25 October 2016. This workshop was postponed due to political uncertainties in the region at the time. 

2015World Heritage & Cultural Tourism DevelopmentInclusive Approaches to Dissonant Heritage & Conflicting Interpretation

Culture & Development in the African Region of the Seychelles, Mauritius & Reunion, 19-23 October 2015

The seminar included representation from  the African World Heritage Fund (AWHF), and was co-organised by ICOMOS ICTC & ICOMOS Seychelles, sponsored by the Seychelles Ministry of Culture & Tourism. 

ICOMOS ICTC members with H.E. Alain St Ange, Minister for Tourism & Culture, Seychelles, and delegates from Seychelles, Madagascar, Mauritius and Réunion, at the opening of the World Heritage & Cultural Tourism Development Expert Seminar & Workshop, Mission Lodge, Mahé Island, Seychelles, October 19, 2015

The Mission Ruins of Venn’s Town situated on Mahé Island, Seychelles, were inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Tentative List in 2013

The framework of the Expert Seminar focussed on the context of the UN Sustainable Development Goals 2030. Five five main sub-themes were covered within the overarching theme of Culture & Development.

  1. Supporting UNESCO World Heritage nominations upstream
  2. Examining the relationship between natural and cultural heritage sites
  3. Determining the role of communities in uninhabited areas
  4. Investigating the part played by interpretation in tackling issues of contested / conflicting identities – including slavery and colonisation
  5.  Bringing together the tangible and intangible heritage in sustainable tourism development 

2015 –  Timber Heritage and Cultural Tourism: Values, Innovation and Visitor Management

ICOMOS Thailand International Conference, Bangkok, Thailand 6 – 9 November 2015

In collaboration with International Cultural Tourism Committee (ICOMOS-ICTC) & International Committee of Vernacular Architecture (ICOMOS-CIAV) Sponsored by the Fines Art Department, Chulalongkorn University and the Ministry of Culture, Bangkok, 

2014Creative Cities as World Heritage Tourist Destinations

ICOMOS ICTC Roundtable Meeting, Florence, Italy 9 -12 March 2014

 Our discussions focused on key issues impacting on cultural heritage conservation & protection and the visitor & community interface. We examined what strategic and operational planning and management leads to positive cultural interaction and why and when there is disengagement amongst tourists and local people from the cultural heritage they either live within or experience as tourists, ultimately leading to dystopia. In addition, we undertook an appraisal of current international doctrines in order to assess requirements for guidance in the 21st century including ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Charter, ICOMOS Valetta Principles, and UNESCO Recommendation on Historic Urban Landscapes. The UNESCO World Heritage City of Florence was our case study.

2014Palladio, Architecture and the Veneto Landscape, Milan to Venice  &  Slow Food Slow Tourism, Greve in Chianti, Volterra & Siena

ICOMOS ICTC Study Visits, Italy, 1–7 November 2014

ICOMOS ICTC pre-conference study visits before ICOMOS 18th General Assembly, Florence 2014. Part 1 was an itinerary – a cultural route – focusing on the historic cities of Milan, Vicenza, Padua and  Venice and Palladian architecture of the Venice region; whereas Part 2 explored the Tuscan lifestyle and ‘Terroir’ as a different kind of cultural tourism practice.

2013Living Heritage: Creative Tourism and Sustainable Communities: Education, Interpretation, and Management

ICOMOS ICTC & ICOMOS Thailand International Cultural Tourism Expert Symposium & Workshop, Sukhothai UNESCO World Heritage site, Thailand, 7-11October, 2013

An event co-organized by ICOMOS ICTC, ICOMOS Thailand, Faculty of Architecture and Planning, Thammasat University (APTU) Thailand; and the sponsored by Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration, or DASTA Thailand, a public organization under supervision of the Office of the Prime Minister.

The settlements attached to the Sukhothai – Si Satchanalai – Kamphaeng Phet Historical Parks have been designated a special area for sustainable tourism development by DASTA. One key priority was identified: ensuring the continuation and integrity of cultural values alongside – and integral to – the earliest stages of tourism development. ICTC responded to the urgent need for researchers and experts  to work with the local communities – and  before major infrastructure had been constructed.

Designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1991. An ancient kingdom during the 13th and 14th centuries, Sukhothai was located at a strategic crossroad and prospered as a centre of trade. The civilization which involved in the Kingdom of Sukhothai rapidly absorbed numerous external influences and by incorporating them with ancient local traditions forged what is known as the ‘Sukhothai style’.

Apart from historic monuments and archaeological sites, Sukhothai also produces fine quality and prominent ceramics, goldsmith-silversmith crafts and ethnic textile works, among other living traditions and intangible heritages. Policy planning for the sustainable development and the integration of cultural heritage education, interpretation and management processes was non-existent at the time of our visit.

Expert working session in Sukhothai: ICTC delegates with colleagues from ICOMOS Thailand, USA and Indonesia.

2012Cultural Tourism for Community Development: 40 Years of the World Heritage Convention

ICOMOS ICTC & ICOMOS Philippines International Conference Vigan, Philippines, 5-10 November 2012

Sponsored by the Government of the Philippines

Vigan is ‘the best-preserved example of a planned Spanish colonial town in Asia’ inscribed on the World Heritage List in 1999; and is an emergent tourism destination.  The City of Vigan was awarded a UNESCO certificate for “Best Practice in World Heritage Site Management” in 2012 during the week of our conference.


2012 Ifugao Rice Terraces of the Philippine Cordilleras a UNESCO World Heritage site inscribed in 1995

ICOMOS ICTC Study Visit led by ICOMOS Philippines, 12-14 November 2012