The University Student Forum on World Heritage & Conservation Proposal Competition, initiated by Guangdong’s Sun Yat-sen University School of Tourism Management in 2011, was recently honoured by the Asia and the Pacific Region under the auspices of UNESCO (WHITRAP) for its world heritage education efforts.
This Forum is a national competition for college students in China, consisting of three parts, namely, world heritage expert lectures, world heritage and conservation proposal competitions as well as interdisciplinary dialogues.
As many as 48 experts from international organizations such as UNESCO, IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature and ICOMOS, the International Council on Monuments and Sites, from prestigious universities in China including Peking University and Tsinghua University, as well as representatives from world heritage sites have given lectures on the theme.
The world heritage and conservation proposal competition is made up of preliminary contests on campus, national qualification trials and on-site finals. Undergraduate students of related majors such as archaeology, architecture, ecology, geography and tourism form interdisciplinary teams to put forward creative proposal on heritage conservation and utilization. Through on-site presentation and expert evaluation, they will be selected for awards.
Outstanding works in the competition will be forwarded to the managers of the world heritage sites and displayed to the public through their WeChat official accounts. So far, a total of 315 universities, 978 teams and more than 5,000 people have participated in this competition.
The interdisciplinary dialogue is the communication between students from two opposing majors named heritage conservation and heritage utilization. The representatives share their opinions on a series of conflicting issues on the protection and utilization so as to reach agreements.
College students are responsible for the whole process of the event including the planning, follow-up tracing and organization. Up to now, this Forum has been held successfully for a decade, serving as one of the leading brand activities of heritage education for college students in China.
Now this project has been listed as one of the ten Innovative Case Studies on World Heritage Education, according to the World Heritage Institute of Training and Research for the Asia and the Pacific Region under the auspices of UNESCO (WHITRAP).
The Global Call for Innovative Case Studies on World Heritage Education is launched by the WHITRAP, which is also one of the events of the World Heritage Committee’s 44th session. Its aim is to select outstanding cases which exemplify innovative approaches to World Heritage on a global scale, to share and present these good practices to the widest international audiences and to lead and promote the future development of World Heritage education.
Author | Nancy (intern)
Editor | Monica & Jerry