19 November 2013

New Partnership ICOMOS-OWHC: Signing of a Memorandum of Understanding

Oaxaca de Juárez (Mexico), November 19, 2013 – During the 12th World Congress of the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC), the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and the OWHC signed a memorandum of understanding on a framework for collaboration for areas of common interest in view of the conservation of the cultural heritage of world heritage cities.  

This new agreement will make it possible for two major organizations in the field of heritage to share their administrative and scientific knowledge. The agreement establishes a framework for collaboration between ICOMOS and the OWHC, which will apply in particular to activities for the enhancement of heritage and research activities on heritage.

The outgoing president of the OWHC and mayor of Beemster, in the Netherlands, Mr. Harry N.G. Brinkman, was extremely proud to sign this agreement, which represents a legacy to the organization that he led for six years:  “The OWHC is a organization of leadership and mutual support acting for the benefit of its member cities. I am very pleased that we reached an agreement with a network that is as credible as ICOMOS. For us, it is a very added-value tool that will enable us to create stronger links between municipalities and heritage experts.”

In referring to this MOU, the President of ICOMOS, Gustavo Araoz, underlined the importance of OWHC as the only forum for Mayors and those in authority of managing the outstanding universal value of historic cities that are privileged to be inscribed on the World Heritage List. He went on to add that “ICOMOS welcomes this Memorandum of Understanding with OWHC as a major tool that will enable us to intensify and make permanent our cooperation to enhance the protection and best use of the urban cultural heritage.”

About International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS)

A unique non-governmental, democratic not-for-profit international organisation committed to furthering the conservation, protection, use and enhancement of the world’s cultural heritage, ICOMOS is dedicated to the development of common doctrines, the evolution and circulation of knowledge, the creation of improved conservation techniques, and the promotion of cultural heritage significance. As an official advisory body to the World Heritage Committee for the implementation of the UNESCO World Heritage Convention, ICOMOS evaluates nominations and advises on the state of conservation of properties inscribed on the World Heritage List. ICOMOS gathers over 12100 members from 133 countries, and benefits of more than 100 National Committees and 28 International Scientific Committees.

About the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC)

Founded on September 8, 1993, in Fez, Morocco, the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC) is composed more than 250 cities having on their territory a site inscribed by UNESCO on the World Heritage List. The main objectives of the OWHC are: the implementation of the World Heritage Convention, to encourage cooperation and the exchange of information and expertise relating to the conservation and management of heritage; to develop a sense of solidarity among its member cities.


Gaia Jungeblodt 
International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS)

Email: [email protected]
Tel. + 33 (0) 1 45 67 67 70

Xavier Turcotte Savoie
Programs Administrator
Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC)

Email: [email protected]
Tel: 1-(418)-692-0000