IUCN Congress journey still gathering pace in 2018 with nature-culture symposium

The thematic journey on Nature-Culture, or Culture-Nature, which started at the IUCN World Conservation Congress 2016 in Hawai‘i and continued at the ICOMOS General Assembly 2017 in New Delhi, continues to gather pace. In 2018, year of IUCN's 70th anniversary, the journey takes us to San Francisco for the US/ICOMOS Symposium in November. A call for papers is now open until 15 May 2018.

Opening ceremony Hawaii Congress

The Nature-Culture journey explores the growing understanding that cultural and natural heritage are inextricably linked in many landscapes and waterscapes. Effective and long lasting conservation of these places depends on better integration of these ‘entangled dimensions’. In 2016, delegates of the Nature-Culture Journey at the IUCN World Conservation Congress issued a statement of commitments, now translated into six languages.

Focused on the theme ‘Forward Together: A Culture-Nature Journey - Towards More Effective Conservation in a Changing World’, the US/ICOMOS Symposium will look at different areas of heritage practice. It will identify concrete action to advance the integration of culture and nature, and offer an opportunity for sharing knowledge and lessons learned from national and international experience.

The event takes place in San Francisco, USA from 13 to 14 November 2018. It is organised by US/ICOMOS in partnership with the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), UNESCO World Heritage Centre, National Trust for Historic Preservation, Presidio Trust, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy, Golden Gate National Recreation Area, and US National Park Service.

Call for papers until 15 May

A Programme Committee for the US/ICOMOS Symposium is now calling for papers related to the Culture-Nature Journey in general and more specifically to four themes representing areas of innovation for advancing conservation.

  1. Adopting a landscape approach for the conservation of cultural and natural resources — from urban to rural places
  2. Recognising intangible heritage and diverse perspectives as integral to conservation strategies
  3. Building resilience, adaptation and sustainability for urban and rural landscapes
  4. Considering the past and future of the World Heritage List from the perspective of the US

Contributions should focus on areas of practice that are on the cutting edge in developing new approaches to advance the recognition and integration of nature-culture interlinkages. Also welcome are case studies and analyses of lessons learned that identify next steps to advance new working methods, practice, legal and policy frameworks, research, and theory.

To find more details on how to submit proposals, visit the US/ICOMOS website.

Celebrating IUCN’s 70th anniversary

The US/ICOMOS Symposium will also be the opportunity to celebrate 70 years since IUCN’s establishment. In 1948, it became the first global environmental union, bringing together governments and civil society organisations with a shared goal to protect nature. Throughout the decades, IUCN played a fundamental role in the creation of key international conventions, and notably the World Heritage Convention. Hand in hand with UNESCO, IUCN drafted the Convention which was adopted in 1972 and has served as its Advisory Body on nature to this day.

Today, with the expertise and reach of its more than 1,300 Members – including States, government agencies, NGOs and Indigenous Peoples’ Organisations – and over 10,000 international experts, IUCN is the world’s largest and most diverse environmental network. It continues to champion nature-based solutions as key to the implementation of international agreements such as the Paris climate change agreement and the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals.

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