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International Conference “Italy-ASEAN Virtual Learning Centre on Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Development” (Hanoi, 11-12 January 2024)

Conf. Italia-ASEAN 1

On January 11th and 12th, 2024, Casa Italia hosted the closing conference of the project “Italy-ASEAN Virtual Learning Centre on Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Development, which consisted in the creation of an on-line learning platform addressed to cultural heritage professionals and officials from Italy and ASEAN Member States, where they can attend training courses as well as share knowledge and experiences on sustainable cultural heritage management. The project was devised and promoted by the Italy-ASEAN Association, funded by the Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, endorsed by the ASEAN Senior Official Meeting of Culture and Arts, and implemented by the Fondazione “Ing. Carlo Maurilio Lerici” in the framework of the Italy-ASEAN Development Partnership.

The conference was opened by the institutional greetings by Amb. Marco della Seta, Mr. Tran Dinh Thanh (Deputy Director General of the Cultural Heritage Department of the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism of Vietnam) and Mr. Ky Anh Nguyen (Director for Sustainable Development at ASEAN Secretariat).

During the two roundtables moderated by Dr. Richard Engelhardt (former UNESCO Regional Advisor in Asia and the Pacific), experts from Italy and ASEAN Member States that were present at the event, as well as representatives from the ASEAN Secretariat, discussed the various aspects and problems related to sustainable cultural heritage management, with particular regard to issues specific to each individual country and situation.

Upon opening the first roundtable, the Fondazione Lerici, executing agency of the project, presented a relation on purposes, activities and results of the on-line course “Holistic and sustainable approach to the management and safeguarding of cultural heritage”, the first initiative foreseen in the framework of the Virtual Learning Centre, which took place between April and August 2023.

In view of possible future activities, the issue of environment – including effects of climate change on cultural heritage – was singled out as a possible matter of discussion on the Virtual Learning Centre.

Participants to the conference also visited the Thang Long Imperial Citadel and the Vietnam National Museum of History. These field trips provided a most useful and appreciated insight on two relevant study cases of sustainable management of cultural heritage.

The event was concluded by the presentation by Amb. Marco della Seta of the certificate awards to the participants to the on-line course that had submitted the best final essays.