UNESCO produces a wide range of publications and documents related to culture.

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Documents Resource Manual 'Preparing World Heritage Nominations' available online

The aim of this Resource Manual is to help States Parties to achieve good quality World Heritage nominations.


Documents MUSEUM International N°247: What Can Art Still Do? 2

Museum International highlights the role of museums as places for reflection and production of knowledge on the heritage and culture, and provides information on debates under way in international bodies.

Read more about this issue

Documents International Year for the Rapprochement of Cultures, 2010: highlights

At present, new global challenges and threats are multiplying and undermining humankind’s cohesion in a world where interdependence is growing and solidarity is diminishing.

Documents UNESCO Venice Newsletter – Issue N°4, 2010

This fourth issue focuses on the results attained by the Office, its mandate and focus areas. Particular attention is given to the successful implementation of joint activities oriented towards strengthening scientific and cultural cooperation in the region, reflecting shared objectives by both the Office and its host country, Italy. It features articles about UN initiatives and joint programming in the region, Science and Culture activities, and it closes with a back story.


Documents Islands as Crossroads - Sustaining Cultural Diversity in Small Island Developing States

The very notion of a ‘small island’ usually triggers several associations in the minds of continental dwellers. Remote, isolated, insular, even paradisiacal, are some of the more common imaginings about islands. Yet small island states and their populations are far from isolated or culturally homogenous. On the contrary, islands have long been places where peoples of different cultures have encountered each other and lived in close proximity. Islands are better understood as dynamic centres of cultural interaction – as ‘crossroads of cultures’.

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Documents Cultural Heritage Review N°58 - World Heritage and Sustainable Tourism

Contents of this issue:

  • Part threat, part hope: the challenge of tourism
  • Nature tourism in Sian Ka'an
  • Communities and tourism benefits at Serengeti
  • Art and Industrial Culture: Völklingen Ironworks

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Documents Cultural Property in War: Improvement in Protection
Commentary on the 1999 Second Protocol to the Hague Convention of 1954 for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict

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Documents General History of Africa Collection (in Portuguese)
Published in eight volumes, the General History of Africa is now issued in Portuguese.

Its complete edition is also available in Arabic, English and French, and its abridged edition is available in English, French and in several other languages including Hausa, Peul and Swahili.

One of UNESCO's most important publishing projects in the last thirty years, the General History of Africa marks a major breakthrough in the recognition of Africa's cultural heritage for it allows the understanding of a historical development of the African people and its relationship with other civilizations from a broad, diachronic, and objective perspective obtained from the inside of the continent.

The collection has been produced by more than 350 specialists of various areas under the coordination of the International Scientific Committee composed by 39 intellectuals, of which two thirds were African.


Documents The Intangible Cultural Heritage Courier of Asia and the Pacific, Vol. 6
This issue presents, notably, the Fifth Session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of ICH and approval of the International Information and Networking Centre for Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific Region, proposed by the Korean government as a category 2 centre.

ICH Courier is published by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Centre for Asia and the Pacific (ICHCAP)


Documents Fast Car: Travelling Safely around the World

Fast Car: Travelling Safely around the World is a racing game that helps you to learn about HIV and AIDS prevention and takes you on a tour of some of the World's Heritage sites.

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Documents A cultural approach to HIV and AIDS prevention and care: E-Learning Tool

This eLearning tool is intended for development practitioners working in response to HIV and AIDS. It is ideally suited for program officers in the field, working directly with communities. It is also intended for practitioners working in centralised offices to help them understand what culturally appropriate approaches are and how they might assist their organisations to respond better in this manner.

Documents The Intangible Cultural Heritage Courier of Asia and the Pacific Vol.5, 2010
The fifth issue of the ICH Courier provides news of the Expert Seminar on ICH Inventory-making for Central Asia which took place from 27 October to 1 November 2010 in Korea, and covers main issues discussed by Experts on Safeguarding ICH and Intellectual Property held in Seoul on 21 October 2010. It is followed by ‘Expert Remarks’ which addresses the Involvement and Role of Communities in the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage by Dr Sulayman Khalaf, Intangible Cultural Heritage Expert of Abu Dhabi Authority for Culture and Heritage.

ICH Courier is published by the Intangible Cultural Heritage Centre for Asia and the Pacific (ICHCAP)



Documents UNESCO Venice Newsletter issue no.3, 2010
This third issue focuses on the theme of Youth. It features articles about UN initiatives and joint programming in the region.


Documents Aux sources des musiques du monde (in French)
L’attrait sans cesse croissant pour les musiques du monde se manifeste aussi bien par le très vif succès de la world music que par la découverte et la reconnaissance toujours plus grandes des valeurs musicales traditionnelles du monde entier.
Documents Community-based approach to museum development in Asia and the Pacific for culture and sustainable development (en anglais)
The inclusion of the concept of cultural identity in global cultural policies was strongly recommended on the occasion of the World Conference on Cultural Policies (1982), which stated that "the equality and dignity of all cultures must be recognized, as must the right of each people and community to affirm and preserve its cultural identity and have it respected by others".


Documents UNESCO World Heritage Desk Diary 2011
The UNESCO World Heritage Desk Diary 2011 features a helpful week-at-a-glance design. It is illustrated with 81 colour photos of World Heritage sites, each accompanied by a short caption.
The diary also introduces the Convention Concerning the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage: its objectives, the selection criteria, the institutions which ensure its implementation, as well as a list of sites and states that are party to the Convention.


Documents Proceedings of the Symposium "Funding Culture, Managing the Risk"

On 16 and 17 April 2010, UNESCO brought together leading experts from the financial, development, academic and cultural sectors for a symposium on "Funding Culture, Managing the Risk" to develop innovative strategies and approaches to improving funding and financing opportunities for culture in developing countries.

The two-day symposium, supported by the Government of Spain and held at the Orga-nization’s headquarters, was part of a series of events organized by UNESCO’s Culture Sector aiming to catalyse new ideas and international action around the culture and development agenda.

Culture is a proven effective driver of development, with great potential and impact for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals; with only five years before the deadline for their achievement, 2010 offers the international community critical oppor-tunities to place the role of culture more centrally in development practices and policies.

This volume reunites the presentations from leading experts and practitioners in the field and captures the dynamic exchanges of ideas and experiences. Included are the key messages of the symposium and the lead-up event, a global online discussion, as well as proposals on the way forward for the culture and development agenda.

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Documents DVD Slave Routes : A Global Vision

This document highlights the African presence across continents, the significant contributions of the African Diaspora to the host societies in various fields (arts, religion, knowledge, gastronomy, agriculture, behaviour, linguistics, etc.), and the racism and discrimination inherited from this tragic past. Its scope moves beyond the trauma of slavery and emphasizes slave resistance and resilience in surviving such a dehumanizing system.

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Documents MUSEUM International N°245-6: Shared Heritage Shared Futures

Museum International highlights the role of museums as places for reflection and production of knowledge on the heritage and culture, and provides information on debates under way in international bodies.

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Documents Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger

Languages are not only tools of communication, they also reflect a view of the world. Languages are vehicles of value systems and cultural expressions and are an essential component of the living heritage of humanity. Yet, many of them are in danger of disappearing.

UNESCO’s Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger tries to raise awareness on language endangerment.

This third edition has been completely revised and expanded to include new series of maps and new points of view.

Documents The UNESCO General and Regional Histories (Brochure, PDF)
This brochure presents the six collections of the Histories :
  • History of Humanity
  • General History of Africa
  • History of Civilizations of Central Asia
  • General History of Latin America
  • General History of the Caribbean
  • The Different Aspects of Islamic Culture
  • The collections constitute seminal works of intellectual heritage and a tool for dialogue, between past and future, between here and there.

    Read more by downloading the brochure (PDF)

    Documents ICC-Angkor: 15 years of International Cooperation for Conservation and Sustainable Development (Book, PDF)
    Published by the UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh, this book covers 15 years of activities of the International Coordinating Committee for the Safeguarding and Development of the Historic Site of Angkor (ICC-Angkor)

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    Documents The Power of Culture for Development (Brochure, PDF)
    Culture, in all its dimensions, is a fundamental component of sustainable development. As a sector of activity, through tangible and intangible heritage, creative industries and various forms of artistic expressions, culture is a powerful contributor to economic development, social stability and environmental protection.

    As a repository of knowledge, meanings and values that permeate all aspects of our lives, culture also defines the way human beings live and interact both at local and global scales.

    Documents We are all in the same boat! Using art and creative approaches with young people to tackle HIV-related stigma (Toolkit, PDF)

    This toolkit will help young people see that we are all affected by HIV and AIDS - we are all in the same boat! We need to work together and support each other.

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    Documents Underwater Cultural Heritage in Oceania
    The Pacific Ocean contains a particular wealth of submerged traces of human existence. It spans three continents - Asia, Australia and America. Its archipelagos and islands are stretched over a great distance and many of them were populated by humans very early on, and underwent processes of substantial change by European colonialism. Underwater sites in Oceania span human history from the Stone Age to the Atomic Age.

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    Documents World Heritage Review n°57 - World Heritage in Brazil

    Contents of this issue:

    - Interview with the Brazilian Minister of Culture, Juca Ferreira.

    - Cultural heritage national policy in Brazil – Perspectives and challenges.

    - Biodiversity protection and Brazilian World Heritage natural sites management as tools of sustainability.

    - Brazilian sites inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

    For more information

    Where to buy:

    UNESCO Publishing

    Documents World Heritage Review n°56 - International Year of Biodiversity

    The Convention recognizes the interconnectivity of biological and cultural diversity in identifying and conserving the rich biodiversity of World Heritage sites.

    Since 2005, the mission of the World Heritage Marine Programme has been to safeguard the world’s most outstanding marine sites, to make sure they will be preserved and allowed to thrive for generations to come.

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    Where to buy:

    UNESCO Publishing

    Documents UNESCO Beirut Office Newsletter issue no. 8

    The Director General of UNESCO, Ms. Irina Bokova signed an agreement with the Syrian Arab Republic for establishing a regional training centre ( UNESCO Category II Centre) in the field of early childhood care and education. This agreement was officially signed during Bokova’s recent visit to the Syrian Arab Republic (22 - 25 April 2010) whereupon the latter was represented by its Minister of Education Mr. Ali Saad.

    Read the UNESCO Beirut Newsletter (pdf)

    Documents Why and how Africa should invest in African languages and multilingual education
    Documents Managing Disaster Risks for World Heritage Resource Manual

    The UNESCO World Heritage Centre and the Advisory Bodies to the World Heritage Committee, as well as the International Centre for the Study of the Presevation and Restoration of Cultural Property (ICCROM), the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) are launching the first title within the World Heritage Resource Manuals series.

    This manual focuses on one specific approach to the principles, methodology and process for managing disaster risks at cultural and natural World Heritage properties.


    Documents Newsletter of the “Portal of Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean”

    As a follow-up to the agreements adopted in the Meeting of the Pro-Tempore Secretariat previous to the XVII Forum of Ministers and Officials in Charge of Cultural Policies of Latin America and the Caribbean (Quito, Ecuador, 11 April 2010), the Technical Secretary of the Forum, based at the UNESCO Regional Office for Culture in Latin America and the Caribbean since 1999, has facilitated the preparation and dissemination of a new issue of the Newsletter of the “Portal of Culture of Latin America and the Caribbean” (a publication in three languages), especially dedicated to provide information of the progress of the projects of the Forum.


    Documents MUSEUM International N°244: What Can Art Still Do? (periodical)

    ‘‘Art will save the world’’. One hundred and fifty years after Dostoyevsky’s triumphant declaration, UNESCO asked, with a touch of scepticism, ‘‘What power does Art still have?’’

    Between the mid 19th century and the start of the 21st, then, it seems that doubt has crept in concerning the power of Art in human destiny. It is true that, in the meantime, the world has undergone profound upheaval, and its intellectual, political and cultural foundations have been shaken by colonisation, totalitarianism and national and international conflicts. The history of the last century, then, has done much to endanger the force of Art. So we were justified in asking the question.


    Documents Handling of Collections in Storage

    A museum’s storage area is a vital part of any museum and generally contains the larger part of the collection. It also plays an essential role in the development of a museum and its programmes as it is closely linked with other activities, such as research, consultation, exhibitions, conservation and loans.

    The storage area guarantees the preservation of and accessibility to the collection, and as a result the proper care and management of collections in storage is an important challenge for museums if they are to maintain their roles as centres of knowledge, research and inspiration.

    Read the document

    Documents The Transformation of the National History Museum in Albania: Recommendations and Proposed Next Steps by the Advisory Board
    published in English and Albanian in Tirana, Albania ©2010
    Documents The Slave Route: reconciling the duty to remember and historical truth

    The Slave Route Project is the culmination of a long reflection about the duty to remember in order to break the silence over one of humanity's greatest tragedies.

    It was at the proposal of Haiti and African countries that, at its 27th session in 1993, the General Conference of UNESCO responded to this duty to remember by approving the establishment of The Slave Route Project.

    The Project was officially launched in Ouidah, Benin, in 1994.

    Read the document 

    Documents Symposium on Culture and Development: a Response to the Challenges of the Future?

    In the context of the current world crisis, when new solutions are being sought –although preliminary studies suggest that the cultural sector has been largely unaffected by the crisis – UNESCO welcomed the opportunity afforded by the 35th session of the General Conference, held in October 2009, to place culture back at the centre of the debate on development.

    The symposium on “Culture and development: a response to future challenges?” was held at Sciences Po on 10 October 2009, with the support of the Government of the Kingdom of Spain, to reopen the intellectual debate on the “cultural” component, which could provide a new key to sustainable and fairer development. The time seems particularly right to focus on culture’s capacity for permanent renewal, owing to the creativity of individuals, peoples and societies, and on the capacity for devising alternative models of development rooted in each country’s rich cultural diversity.

    Read the Report


    Documents UNESCO Beirut Office Newsletter issue no. 7
    A new global trend in the field of early childhood care and education has lately proposed a major shift to move from the traditional way of only promoting elementary education into promoting a more holistic and approach, tackling all areas of child development including cognitive, social and health from birth to eight years of age.
    Documents World Heritage Review n°55 - World Heritage Cities
    Documents 2009-2010 World Heritage Map
    The latest version of the World Heritage map, produced by the UNESCO World Heritage Centre and National Geographic Maps with support from the United Nations Foundation, can now be ordered for a modest fee from the World Heritage Centre website. All proceeds from sales of the maps will go toward the preservation and promotion of World Heritage sites.

    View the map online

    Documents Symposium on the UNESCO General and Regional Histories, 5 and 6 October 2009: Final Report
    Celebrating the completion of the publication of its General and Regional Histories and launching a new phase for their promotion, UNESCO organised a Symposium at its headquarters on 5 and 6 October, 2009.
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