Value of Cultural Heritage for Society
In an increasingly globalised world, marked by the exchange of ideas and people’s mobility, the search for connections and roots reflects the individual’s need to belong and to know who he/she is.
People in eastern, central and western Europe may have different ideas on their cultural identity, affiliations and citizenship, but they all face the same question: how can different cultural identities co-exist on the basis of mutual respect and an active desire to live as one community – values which underlie the CoE’s ideal of peace and security?
Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (Faro,
Whilst the other international heritage conventions deal with how to protect and conserve cultural goods, the
Faro Convention poses the question why and for whom the heritage is transmitted. It is based on the idea that knowledge and use of heritage form part of the citizen’s right to participate in cultural life as defined in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
The text presents heritage both as a resource for human development, the enhancement of cultural diversity and the promotion of intercultural dialogue, and as part of an economic development model based on the principles of sustainable resource use. In this respect it falls within the scope of the Council of Europe’s priorities as set by the 3rd Summit of Heads of State and Government in May 2005.
The Framework Convention on the Value of Cultural Heritage for Society (known as "the Faro Convention") entered into force
on 1st June 2011. A series of events is being organised to help disseminate the novel message of the Convention. The publication of
"Heritage and Beyond" constitutes a basis for reflection to be developed by public authorities and civil society on the different values and contributions which heritage can make to society as a whole.
The Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape (CDCPP) will be responsible for overseeing the implementation of the convention.
Section IV of the Convention provides for "monitoring and cooperation". It also provides for co-operation between parties to the Convention to promote recognition of the common heritage of Europe. Co-operation includes maintaining, developing and contributing data "to a shared information system, accessible to the public which facilitates assessment of how each Party fulfils its commitments under this Convention". The current development of the Herein Network already takes into account the thrust of the Faro Convention.
Handbook on Values for Life in a Democracy
The Council of Europe’s project on Cultural identities, shared values and citizenship (2006-2008) was launched after the Third Summit of Heads of State and Government (Warsaw, 2005). It was based on the premise that an awareness and appreciation of Europe’s rich diversity of cultures and heritages and how they have interacted with each other over time are essential preconditions for mutual respect, peaceful coexistence, intercultural dialogue, a shared attachment to common values and an emerging European cultural citizenship.
One of the outcomes of the project was the
Handbook on Values for Life in a Democracy
which is structured around a series of key questions to promote discussion amongst young people about fundamental issues associated with universal human rights and the implementation of core European values.
European Manifesto on Multiple Cultural Affiliation
As a contribution to the Council of Europe White Paper on intercultural dialogue and to the European model of cultural diversity, a team of experts prepared a reference text in 2006 and 2007 on multiple cultural affiliation and citizenship. Going beyond the approach based on fixed cultural identities and the debate on recognition for minorities, the text sets out to show how the feeling, on the part of certain individuals or groups, of belonging simultaneously to several cultural traditions can be reconciled with a European citizenship in the making, based on mutual recognition of different cultures and a shared attachment to common values.
Heritage and Beyond
The publication looks in depth at various themes introduced by the Faro Convention, such as the holistic definition of heritage, the concept of heritage communities and of a common European heritage, its different economic and social dimensions and the principle of shared responsibility. It also offers valuable insights into the relationships between the heritage, the knowledge society and the process of digitising cultural assets.
colloquy of the publication)