International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property
ICCROM and Italy

ICCROM and Italy

The Headquarters Agreement signed between UNESCO and Italy on 27 April 1957 gave a home to a new organization, ICCROM. Sixty years have now passed, and the dialogue with ICCROM’s host country is arguably now more important than ever.

Today, Italy is taking a leading role in cultural heritage protection at the international level, a role made clear through multiple diplomatic and humanitarian developments. This aspect of Italy’s foreign policy and cultural diplomacy is both the raison d’être and explanation for ICCROM’s location in Italy. Recent years have seen many opportunities for collaboration between ICCROM and its host country on these vital themes.

Italy is deeply committed to heritage protection, and its strong engagement in the Mediterranean region is a main pole of its international policy. Both directly and through coordination, ICCROM’s host country supports nations in the Mediterranean through humanitarian assistance and capacity building.  These initiatives, often taken in conjunction with ICCROM activities, aim for a positive regional impact in Africa, the Arab region and southeastern Europe, as well as internationally.  Moreover, given ICCROM’s strong focus on disaster preparedness, ICCROM has leveraged its long-standing cooperation with Japan to bring visibility to Italy’s rescue of damaged heritage following the earthquakes in Central Italy.

In the 60 years of ICCROM’s presence in Italy, the collaboration framework has greatly evolved. Born at the aftermath of the Second World War, ICCROM was called – in the first years of its activity – to address the issues of the post-war reconstruction, issues supported strongly by Italian institutions. In the early 1960s, ICCROM contributed to international campaigns in which Italy was a driving force — recovery from the Florence floods, the transfer of the Abu Simbel monument and other initiatives as well. In more recent years, as Italy has strengthened its cultural diplomacy beyond its borders, ICCROM has offered an ideal platform for joint initiatives in a worldwide scenario, addressing the growing complexity of the themes proposed by cultural heritage.


Latest News


On 12th of February 2020 the Director-General received the visit of Ms Daniela Porro, Soprintendente Speciale Archeologia, Belle Arti e Paesaggio di Roma, and Alessandro Mascherucci, Architect in charge of the Portion of San Michele Complex.

Based on feedback provided by delegates attending the General Assembly, from 30-31 October 2019, this evaluation is vital to assessing outcomes and identifying areas that need improvement. As ICCROM continues to improve its services to Member States, this evaluation will provide the opportunity to measure progress and ensure a high standard of quality at future General Assembly meetings.

The eighth international First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis (FAC) course concluded last week at ICCROM’s headquarters in Rome. The course brought together experts from several fields of expertise that included cultural heritage, disaster risk reduction, urban resilience, mediation, climate variability and humanitarian aid. Through the FAC training, they learned how to mitigate the disaster risks and prevent damage to cultural heritage in crisis situations and take the necessary steps to ensure early recovery post-crisis.

On 5th of December  2019 the Director-General received the visit of Amb. Andrea Meloni, International School of Cultural Heritage of the Fondazione Scuola dei beni e delle attivitá culturali.

The Italian Chamber of Deputies gave the green light to the ratification and execution of the exchange of letters between Italy and ICCROM. This follows the approval at the Senate. MP Mirella Emiliozzi (Five Star Movement): keeping ICCROM’s headquarters in our country is of great interest and of particular relevance.