Event Date/Time: May 30, 2009 End Date/Time: Jun 01, 2009
Registration Date: May 30, 2009
Abstract Submission Date: Oct 31, 2008
Paper Submission Date: Feb 28, 2009
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Sharing Cultures 2009 aims at gathering in an International Conference worldwide experts and scholars on Cultural and Intangible Heritage. One of the main goals of the Conference is to promote significant discussion on these relevant issues, now that the General Assembly of UNESCO approved the Operational Directives and that the Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage is fully operational.

For this purpouse, Sharing Cultures 2009 adopts de definition of Intangible Cultural Heritage presented in the UNESCO Convention: "The «intangible cultural heritage» means the practices, representations, expressions, knowledge, skills – as well as the instruments, objects, artefacts and cultural spaces associated therewith – that communities, groups and, in some cases, individuals recognize as part of their cultural heritage. This intangible cultural heritage, transmitted from generation to generation, is constantly recreated by communities and groups in response to their environment, their interaction with nature and their history, and provides them with a sense of identity and continuity, thus promoting respect for cultural diversity and human creativity. For the purposes of this Convention, consideration will be given solely to such intangible cultural heritage as is compatible with existing international human rights instruments, as well as with the requirements of mutual respect among communities, groups and individuals, and of sustainable development."

Considering that culture cannot be reduced to its material aspects, intangible heritage must be addressed in innovative-sustainable ways, as a source of inspiration, a field of research and a vast and rich territory of identity. Following the definition endorsed by UNESCO, one of the main goals of Sharing Cultures 2009 is to bring into discussion research work on "living expressions and traditions that countless groups and communities worldwide have inherited from their ancestors and transmit to their descendants, in most cases orally".

The last decades gave intangible heritage scientific recognition throughout significant field work and research projects. The safeguarding of this so often fragile heritage became one of the priorities of international cooperation, the UNESCO role being of major importance in this process. Also ICOM, ICOMOS, and other international and national organizations have been emphasising the need to preserve and study intangible heritage and to include intangible heritage as a concern in professional practices, adopting accurate methodologies and guidelines.

Authors that will submit a paper to Sharing Cultures 2009 International Conference are encouraged to address these main issues in their presentations, making evidence of undergoing innovative approaches and research. The Conference also welcomes papers providing evidence of cultural differences in intangible heritage preservation and use, as well as papers adressing relevant case studies.