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05 October 2019 Between Bahrain and Tunisia, ARC-WH Workshop on World Heritage Sites management & Preservation
Between Bahrain and Tunisia, ARC-WH Workshop on World Heritage Sites management &  Preservation

The ARC-WH, in collaboration with the National Institute of Heritage (INP), based in Tunisia, organized a training workshop on the preparation of Management plans of Cultural World Heritage Sites from 1 to 4 October 2019 in Tunis, Tunisia, in the presence of Dr. Shadia Touqan, Director of the Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (ARC-WH) and her delegation.

The workshop was attended by a group of North African  Sites Managers of World Heritage properties and sites on the Tentative List, selected following a national call for application for heritage professionals by the Ministry of Cultural Affairs and international experts. The training covered the main principles and methodologies of heritage site management and focused on the UNESCO World Heritage site of Medina of Tunis as the primary case study for an applied series of exercises relevant to management planning. Moreover, the workshop allowed participants to exchange experiences, present their case studies, and share challenges related to management, that were discussed at length for effective conservation and management.

The workshop also enhanced the participants’ understanding of the World Heritage Convention; enabled them to exchange on the challenges faced in Arab States in relation to heritage; and discussed how culture can be leveraged to contribute to a future of peace for the region. In addition to building a peer network of like-minded individuals committed to this common goal, the young professionals were encouraged to create an action plan and design projects/activities towards local communities, by applying the knowledge and skills acquired during the Forum.

During a field visit to Medina of Tunis, participants were able to apply practical knowledge skills, such as defining values and identifying attributes of the property.
Following the visit, A SWOT analysis was applied to the site to define a clear vision for an action plan that would accompany the management plan. At the end of the workshop, the working groups presented the primary outcomes of the exercises in a plenary session where the Director-General of INP was present. Participants received certificates as acknowledgment for their active participation and training.

Because this topic is one of the recurring needs of conservation of World Heritage sites, this workshop is considered an integral component to ARC-WH’s strategic objective to strengthen the culture and nature interlinkages for its regional programme for World Heritage, and to enhance North African countries’ efforts to create a network of World heritage specialists, develop new inventive sites management mechanisms in North Africa and better implementation of World Heritage Convention.
The ARC-WH, Manama, had previously hosted, end of September 2019, its 3rd  workshop on “Integrating cultural heritage in conservation in Socotra, Yemen”, sponsored by the British Council, in cooperation with The Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh, The Centre for Middle Eastern Plants and Freie Universität Berlin.

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