SHT delegates participated in the International Conference of National Trusts (17th ICNT) in Gianyar, Bali, Indonesia.

11-15 September 2017

As a member of International National Trust Organization (INTO), The Siam Society Under Royal Patronage sent delegates to attend The International Conference of National Trusts #17 on the theme of “OUR CULTURAL HERITAGE, THE KEY TO ENVIRONMENTAL SUSTAINABILITY, which took place in Bali on 11 – 15 September 2017.

The conference was cooperation between INTO, Indonesian Heritage Trust (BPPI), and The Regency of Gianyar. This conference was attended by over 100 participants from 31 countries. This creative program opened a chance for participants to experience the tangible and intangible cultural heritage and natural resources of Bali, to exchange knowledge and ideas in various exciting environments; such as Masceti Beach, Rumah Panchoran – a beautiful heritage house in Nyuh Kuning village, Taman Nusa – a cultural park exhibit traditional house of various ethnic groups in Indonesia, Bali Safari and Marine Park, Gianyar Botanical Park, and Samuan Tiga Temple.

Some of topics of workshops and discussions included:

  • What do members expect and need from INTO?
  • Summit on the uses of heritage
  • National standards for cultural tourism
  • Developing models for the management of heritage places
  • Fundraising for heritage conservation
  • Developing business plans for heritage organizations
  • Intangible heritage the heart and soul of heritage interpretation
  • Traditional knowledge and local wisdom for Sustainable Environment
  • Too old and too boring – how to get young people involved in the heritage movement
  • Amex Heritage Leadership Panel: New strategies for expanding our audiences
  • Towards environmental sustainability – people and environment in harmony

The Siam Society’s delegates and members have also voiced out their opinions and experiences in different workshops and discussions. “We are engaged in a completely new kind of dialogue which will expand partnership for heritage and conservation. There is a new discourse with new partners we need to talk to, it is the community we need to consult.” – Richard Engelhardt, UNESCO and The Siam Society member.

Too old and too boring – how to get young people involved in the heritage movement – “I will definitely take home the ideas of FAI in Italy, who work with young volunteer groups throughout the country. We are very eager to develop a similar model in Thailand, because FAI shows that you should not think for the young people – with the right amount of guidance, we should allow them to develop their own ideas on heritage” – Kanitha Kasina-Ubol, General Manager of The Siam Society.

“There are indigenous people and local communities who have knowledge and experience to live in harmony with the nature. Their intangible culture should not be overlooked as it could be a part of national success in natural resource management. Allowing people to live with the nature and to consume forest products will create the sense of belonging and stewardship. The state in Thailand and elsewhere should consider not obstructing the grassroots-based management, but instead recognizing, respecting, certifying their rights and help facilitate the sharing of local wisdom in forest management between villages, in Thailand and in the international level. – Jarunee Khongsawat, Siamese Heritage Trust Manager, The Siam Society, summarized her presentation on “Forest Protection Embedded in Village Culture: A case study of Ban Thung Yao village, Lamphun province, Thailand. The full paper can be downloaded here.

We have learned many new things from many inspiring people in this Heritage Trust Family. We would like to extend our thanks to ICNT2017 team for organizing this meaningful conference and for proving a grant for delegates from The Siam Society to be a part of your program.


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