Imagining the next 50 years

The “Convention for the Preservation of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage” was approved by the UNESCO General Conference on November 16, 1972. That makes this year the fiftieth anniversary of the historic signing which committed the supporting countries to an epoch-making turning point; the sites included on the World Heritage List would become an asset of the entire world, regardless of the territory to which they belonged. Fifty years later, the focus is once again on the future.

Articles and podcasts: appeal to researchers

Among the many initiatives with which UNESCO has planned to celebrate this anniversary (eloquently brought together under the slogan “The next 50”) is a call for articles and podcasts from researchers and scholars affiliated with research institutes on the themes of World Heritage. The call will be open until the end of March. This opportunity can also be used by scholars of the Dolomites Heritage in collaborating to identify new approaches for developing the active conservation of the Site in the medium to long term. The key themes proposed are also consistent with the challenges that await the nine Dolomite systems which have been on the World Heritage List since 2009: concrete, innovative ways of safeguarding the Heritage in the face of climate change, sustainable tourism models for the benefit of the sites and communities, processes of reconciliation between conservation and urban/rural development, and the contribution and criticality of new technologies to the protection and promotion of heritage over the next 50 years.

A worldwide sharing platform

Participation in UNESCO’s call could be an opportunity not only to bring their own contribution to the future of Heritage, but also to participate in a global debate: In fact, UNESCO is promoting a partnership with “The Conversation” to commission the articles and podcasts. This is a multimedia platform that boasts 200 million articles read per month by both the public and researchers, a large virtual space where scientists and experts meet and debate.