First Meeting of the Regional Centres for Cultural Heritage in South-Eastern Europe: Cooperation, Partnerships, Funding, will be held in the premises of the International centre for underwater archaeology on 23rd March 2012.The meeting is organised by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia and the UNESCO Venice Office, in cooperation with International Centre for Underwater Archaeology and the Croatian Commission for UNESCO. The regional centres of excellence initiated within the framework of the annual Ministerial Conferences on Cultural Heritage in South-Eastern Europe, with the support of UNESCO, are key partners for the enhancement of sub-regional cooperation and the development of institutional and professional capacities in the safeguarding of cultural heritage, intended as a shared tool for fostering dialogue and sustainable development. The further strengthening of the centres is therefore considered as a common objective by the countries in the region, with the overall aim to improve the management of cultural assets as crucial resources for social and economic development.
Participants of the meeting will be representatives of the International Centre for Underwater Archaeology (Zadar, Croatia), Regional Centre on the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage (Sofia, Bulgaria), Regional Centre on Restoration of Cultural Heritage (Tirana, Albania), Regional Centre on the Digitisation of Cultural Heritage (Skopje, FYRO Macedonia), Regional Centre on the Management of Cultural Heritage (Cetinje, Montenegro) and representatives of the UNESCO, Ministry of culture of the Republic of Croatia, European Commission, World Bank, Regional Cooperation Council, Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Turkey, Turin International Research Centre on the Economics of Culture and World Heritage Studies and European Fund for the Balkans.
The overall objectives of this meeting are to: exchange information on the status, current, and planned activities of the regional centres; enhance coordination for the implementation and planning of activities; share experiences and good practices concerning the status, management, and sustainability of the centres; reinforce networking and cooperation, and promote the establishment of new partnerships; better align the centres’ activities with other relevant initiatives and programmes at sub-regional or European level; explore possibilities of cooperation and financing opportunities, with special reference to the EU framework.