Decision of the Intergovernmental Committee: 12.COM 11.D.3

The Committee,

  1. Recalling Chapter V of the Convention and Chapter I of the Operational Directives,
  2. Having examined Document ITH/17/12.COM/11.d+Add. as well as International Assistance request 01281,
  3. Takes note that Zambia has requested International Assistance for a project entitled Strengthen the capacity for the safeguarding and management of intangible cultural heritage in Zambia (No. 01281):

Since 2010, a number of capacity-building, inventory-making and awareness-creating activities have been carried out in the field of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage by different stakeholders. Participants appreciated these training workshops and were unanimous in calling for a more advanced, comprehensive version of the training to be introduced. To this end, this project intends to develop and implement a degree programme specializing in intangible cultural heritage at the University of Zambia. The project’s objectives are threefold: to provide a critical mass of experts for the safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage in Zambia; to improve the level of training of administrators and experts working in the field of intangible cultural heritage to degree level; and to provide a niche for critical research and in-depth understanding in this field. In its first year, the degree programme is expected to enroll at least 20 district cultural officers sponsored by the project. These officers are currently responsible for identifying and safeguarding intangible cultural heritage together with local communities in all 105 districts in Zambia. The project will use the UNESCO capacity-building programme and its materials to develop a local syllabus and training manual for the degree programme. It is intended to inspire many people to take an interest in issues related to intangible cultural heritage and will have far-reaching benefits for people interested in its safeguarding.

  1. Further takes note that this assistance concerns support for a project carried out at the national level aimed at safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, in accordance with article 20 of the Convention, and that it takes the form of the granting of a donation in line with article 21 (g) of the Convention;
  2. Also takes note that Zambia requested an allocation of US$334,820 from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund for the implementation of the project;
  3. Decides that, from the information included in the file, the request responds as follows to the criteria for granting International Assistance, as set out in paragraphs 10 and 12 of the Operational Directives:

Criterion A.1: Through training sessions recently held as part of the capacity-building programme, the participating members of the community repeatedly expressed their desire to acquire a formal qualification in the field of safeguarding intangible cultural heritage, such as through the development of a degree programme at the University of Zambia. During the preparation of the proposal, the views of the different communities were represented by the chief cultural officer of the ministry responsible for intangible cultural heritage and team of provincial and district cultural officers, who were actively involved in the capacity-building programme.

Criterion A.2: The file provides a detailed budget, grouping costs by activity. The timetable is planned according to the progress of each stage of the programme, and provides reasonable time frames.

Criterion A.3: The budget is well-conceived, consistent with the planned activities and reasonably structured, with a clear overview and precise timetable of the project. The Institute of Economic and Social Research (INESOR) at the University of Zambia will be responsible for implementing the project, in collaboration with the National Commission of UNESCO. The expertise and experience of the human resources involved in the realization of the project are clearly indicated, as are the background, structure and mission of the implementing organization.

Criterion A.4: In terms of lasting results, the project will lead to the development of a national curriculum to strengthen capacities to implement the 2003 Convention, notably in relation to safeguarding through identification, research, documentation and inventorying activities. For instance, research projects carried out by students within communities would raise awareness about intangible cultural heritage. After UNESCO’s support for twenty experts and practitioners during the initial three years, their subsequent fees and the costs associated with new enrolments for the degree programme will be supported by the Zambian government or corporate sponsors. The impact of the project can also be seen in its establishment of a more solid body of experts, including community members.

Criterion A.5: The Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund would cover 90 per cent of the total project budget, with the State Party providing the remaining 10 per cent to finance staff fees, training materials, facility rental costs, equipment, communication costs, operational overheads and so on.

Criterion A.6: The project will achieve the goal of strengthening the skills and abilities of community representatives to independently undertake various intangible cultural heritage safeguarding measures thereafter. It is mandatory for every student to carry out a practical project together with the communities and for their benefit. With the knowledge and skills acquired through the degree programme, beneficiary students will be able to produce inventories and develop safeguarding projects in line with the 2003 Convention. Thanks to the practical component of the programme, which will provide participants with the learning and experience required to be a professional in the field of intangible cultural heritage, the capacities of the communities are also expected to be reinforced.

Criterion A.7: The State Party has so far benefited from International Assistance from the Intangible Cultural Heritage Fund two times, for the following two inventorying projects: 1) ‘Inventorying of proverbs of Lala community in Luano District of Zambia’, contract under preparation (2016-2017; US$24,999.90); 2) ‘Inventorying of the music and dance of the Lozi and Nkoya people of Kaoma District’, contract under preparation (2016-2017; US$24,928.30). These are implemented in accordance with UNESCO regulations.

Paragraph 10(a): The proposed bachelor’s degree programme in intangible cultural heritage is national in scope and involves participants from all ten provinces in Zambia. However, experts from other southern African countries will also be invited to teach the subject in the future.

Paragraph 10(b): The project is nationwide in scope, with the potential to expand beyond Zambia’s borders. The University of Zambia is one of the first universities in the wider region to offer degree programmes of this kind, and may attract students from different countries, as well as sponsors to contribute to the sustainability of the programme in the longer term.

      7. Approves the International Assistance request from Zambia for the project entitled Strengthen the capacity for the safeguarding and management of intangible cultural heritage              in Zambia and grants the amount of US$334,820 to the State Party to this end;
      8. Invites the State Party to seek the involvement of other collaborating institutions and organizations, including partners outside of the University of Zambia, in the implementation of the                  project, as a means to ensure transparency and greater impact;
      9. Highlights the need for the State Party to ensure that the outcomes of the project are sustainable beyond the completion of the first cycle of the degree programme funded with this                        assistance;
    10. Further invites the State Party to use Form ICH-04-Report to report on the use of the assistance granted.