UNESCO World Heritage Convention (1972)
Introduction and Definition
Economic and environmental pressures led to the adoption in 1972 of the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage (better known as the World Heritage Convention) by UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization). This has become the flagship convention for the conservation and management of heritage sites, with almost universal ratification of 189 countries (as of July 2012), referred to as States Parties. Despite its popularity, this legal instrument is still badly understood.
This entry aims to explain the mechanisms to inscribe sites on the World Heritage List. It then will explain the different efforts undertaken since the early 1990s to widen the framework for implementation of the Convention and to ensure that it encompasses the diversity of the world heritage and not only European sites. The second part presents the failures and issues of the implementation of the Convention, in...
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