4 September 2020
In 2020, Icherisheher, the historic center of Baku celebrates the 20th anniversary of its inscription on the UNESCO World Heritage List. 20 years ago, this medieval city, which represents an outstanding and rare example of an historic urban ensemble and architecture, was inscribed by UNESCO on the World Heritage List.This significant anniversary coincides with a global pandemic, which had sudden and substantial impact on cultural heritage with closure of cultural heritage sites and institutions.
The celebration of this historical event was a good opportunity for us – world heritage organizations, site managers, etc. to come together to discuss the challenges of pandemics for heritage sites, how to keep them sustainable during the pandemic, what measures are to be taken when reopening heritage sites and how do we adapt them to the new requirements.
On September 3, the International Conference “World Heritage: Challenges and Post-Pandemic Development” was held online in cooperation with OWHC, with the involvement of UNESCO, ICCROM, Tourism Board and the Ministry of Culture of Azerbaijan, and OWHC member cities. The conference gathered a wide group of interested institutions with presentations targeted on sustainable urban heritage development. A number of local and foreign speakers enriched the program by their experience presenting the challenges they faced during the pandemic and the development perspectives in the post-pandemic era for world heritage cities.
Asgar Alakbarov, Chairman of the Board of the Administration of Walled City of Baku
Jacek Majchrowski, Meyer of Krakow, President of the OWHC
Jyoti Hosagrahar, UNESCO Deputy Director
Lee Minaidis, Interim Secretary Genaral of the OWHC
Joseph King, Director of Partnership and Communication, ICCROM
Azade Heseynova, Chairman of the Board of Reserves Management Center, State Tourism Agency of Azerbaijan
Corinna Del Bianco, Romualdo Del Bianco Foundation, Italy
Matthias Ripp, OWHC Regional Secretariat for Northwest Europe and North America
Robert Piaskovski, Krakow, Poland
Diana Büttner, Bamberg, Germany