UCLG participation at IX International conference of Eurasia World Heritage Cities in Bali


From 29th of April to 2nd of May, Euro-Asia Regional Secretariat of the Organization of World Heritage Cities (OWHC), together with the Municipality of Denpasar and Eurasia Regional Section of UCLG, was hosting the ninth edition of the International Conference of Eurasia World Heritage Cities.

The OWHC, an international network that brings together local governments that have a heritage site inscribed on the UNESCO world Heritage List, represents a collective intelligence on all issues related to the urban management of world heritage property. During this event, participants from local government, academia, and NGOs shared knowledge on how to promote and support the maintenance, recognition and enhancement of their world heritage.

Under the theme of “Resilient Heritage and Tourism” the sessions were focused on how to protect the World Heritage from climate problems, how to save the tourist attractiveness of the cities facing extreme weather conditions and what contribution local leaders may make into implementing SDG#13 “Climate actions”. As the Asia-Pacific Region (ASPAC) is one the world’s most natural disaster-prone areas, UCLG ASPAC has also made a variety of efforts to address this issue, such as conducting in-depth sessions on the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction during the 7th UCLG ASPAC congress. On the 2nd day, participants visited Bali’s cultural heritage, including Taman Ayun Temple which is a UNESCO heritage site.

The on-site visit provided a great opportunity for participants to directly see and learn that Denpasar City is active in protecting the cultural heritage of Bali. Furthermore, Denpasar City showed to its participants that they are making various efforts to pass on the cultural heritage that Bali currently has to future generations.

As part of its support, the UCLG world secretariat also participated in this event sharing various opinions with the participants. The UCLG Learning team also cooperated in 2017 with a learning event on the challenge of Kota Tua in Jakarta, Indonesia to safeguard cultural heritage. Like Denpasar, Kota Tua faces many challenges due to the pressure of urban development in the city centre, which needs collaboration with owners and users.

The UCLG peer cities’ practical recommendations made an important contribution to the city’s regeneration plan, which were received as relevant for the cities as well as OWHC. In conclusion, more collaboration on heritage between regions and network OWHC will be interesting over the long term especially in relation to UCLG’s strong emphasis on cultural policies and agenda culture 21.