ICCROM-IUCN World Heritage Leadership (WHL) programme, the Arab Regional Centre for World Heritage (ARC-WH) and the Heritage Commission of Saudi Arabia joined forces to deliver a 5-day course on Impact Assessment for World Heritage at the World Heritage site of the ‘Rock Art in the Hail Region’ in Saudi Arabia.

IA in Saudi Arabia
Image by ARC-WH

From 20 to 24 November 2022, the World Heritage Leadership programme supported ARC-WH and the Saudi Heritage Commission in planning and implementing a regional capacity-building activity on impact assessments in the World Heritage context. The course brought together 25 Saudi heritage professionals involved with caring for the country's six cultural World Heritage sites.

Held at the World Heritage site, "Rock Art in the Hail Region," the course focused on providing knowledge, skills and tools to conduct impact assessments in line with our newly-published Guidance and Toolkit for Impact Assessments in a World Heritage Context. The Guidance and its methodology were developed by ICCROM, UNESCO, ICOMOS and IUCN under the framework of the WHL programme. The course guided participants through each step of the methodology and provided an overview of how impact assessments can feed into the process of strengthening heritage management systems and preparing for well-informed development that benefits both heritage and society.

Impact Assessment in Saudi ArabiaThis course in Saudi Arabia was the first capacity-building activity organized based on the results of the Impact Assessment Training of Trainers (ToT) conducted by WHL and ARC-WH in October 2022. The ToT aimed to expand the pool of resource people to deliver content in multiple languages and provide regionally-relevant examples and case studies. Their experience allowed the course to provide useful case studies from the Arab region and other relevant international perspectives.