Videos of presentations made at Riga’s seminar on intangible cultural heritage

This post was originally published in French.

In a previous article we mentioned the international seminar devoted to intangible cultural heritage, that took place in Riga in June 2015, in the framework of the Franco-Latvian research program Osmose. Some of the presentations made at this event were recorded. You can access these recordings hereunder. The full program with a summary of each presentation is available online.


Safeguarding the intangible cultural heritage and intellectual property : the public domain in question

Émilie TERRIER, Doctoral student, University of Poitiers, France

In 2003, the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage introduced the Member States to the risks threatening this long-ignored heritage and led them to consider the introduction of a specially adapted protection framework. The WIPO Intergovernmental Committee on Intellectual Property and Genetic Resources, Traditional Knowledge and Folklore is currently working on a protection system based on a sui generis intellectual property law. The question of the preservation of a dynamic public domain is at the very heart of these reflections. Essential to cultural, economic and scientific development, the public domain is vital for a balanced approach to intellectual property. Therefore, how can we reconcile the need to safeguard the intangible cultural heritage with the need to preserve a common fund of knowledge freely accessible? This is the subject that I would like to address.


Intangible cultural heritage and regions in France: inventiveness and dispersion

Christian HOTTIN

Heritage curator, Deputy head of the Department of research management and science policy, Ministry of Culture and Communication, France

While the State has initially demonstrated little interest in the issue of intangible cultural heritage, the regions of France have, since 2006, adapted themselves to this issue in an unequal manner: strongly in the overseas territories and in some parts of the territory having strong regional identity, namely concerning the use of language, but almost none elsewhere. As concerns the services of the General Inventory of Cultural Heritage that depends since 2004 of the regions and are mainly devoted to studying the tangible heritage of France, they haven’t, with some exceptions, enlarged their competencies towards the question of the intangible cultural heritage. Those who have done so, have proceeded in a rough manner, without trying to apply the definitions and principles of the convention, and better informed ones have kept a distance with the implementation of the convention, having preferred to develop partnerships with associations of ethnologists or with regional universities that are already involved within the field of the convention. The establishment of new regions, larger than previous ones, as well as the announcement of act III of the decentralization, today clearly raises the question of delegating competence in the field of ICH to certain regions. As concrete action is just being developed, this is truly a “work in progress” that will be dealt within this presentation.


The 2003 Convention in the light of French law: a historical perspective

Noé WAGENER, Postdoctoral fellow at the Institut des Sciences sociales du Politique, France

From the point of view of French law and French administrative practice, the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage innovates in a double manner. It is an innovation as for the extension of the field of heritage, and as for the recognized role given to communities, groups and individuals who create, maintain and transmit this heritage. But, why are legal and administrative measures of protection so “material” and so “centralized” in France? Haven’t there been any alternatives to this particular “model” of public intervention, before the 2003 Convention? The study of the construction of French cultural heritage law during the 20th century reveals a less linear history, than it might seem at first sight. And the present contribution proposes to return to the richness of this history.


Comparative perspective on the World Heritage (1972) and the Intangible Heritage (2003) Conventions

Jérôme FROMAGEAU

President of the International Society for Research on Art and Cultural Heritage Law, France

The immense richness of natural resources has allowed human populations to live for millenniums, and until today. This relation is not limited to the value of natural resources or to vital services that these spaces produce; it also includes the rich cultural heritage that has evolved over the time in symbiosis with natural environments, more and more artificialized. Or, precisely, in natural and rural environment there are numerous examples where the use of natural resources is regulated by the transmission of knowledge and traditional practices that have assured the safeguarding of biodiversity characteristic to those spaces. Maintaining and safeguarding this knowledge and know-how has recently become a considerable challenge, in particular in the vast field of protecting nature. A voyage through the evolution of implementing conventions for the protection of natural heritage, allows a better understanding of this evolution.


Cooperation partners

The seminar was organized in cooperation with the Institute for Political Social Sciences, National Center for Scientific Research, France; Institute of Literature, Folklore and Art, University of Latvia; Faculty of Law, University of Latvia; Latvian National Center for Culture; Latvian National Commission for UNESCO; French Institute in Latvia; Kuldīga District Council; Kuldīga District Museum; State Culture, Capital Foundation and Journal “Jurista Vārds”.

Organization of the seminar

Anita VAIVADE and Līga ĀBELE with the cooperation of speakers and institutional partners.


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1 réponse

  1. 10/07/2017

    […] Summaries of the presentations are available online. Podcasts and videos of this event can also be accessed online. […]

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