ICCROM & World Urban Planning Education Network

On 9 May 2024, ICCROM formalized a Memorandum of Understanding with the World Urban Planning Education Network (WUPEN), marking a significant milestone in our joint commitment to advancing sustainable development and the protection of cultural heritage globally, especially within rapidly urbanizing areas.  

This collaboration signals a significant step towards safeguarding cultural heritage in rapidly urbanizing regions worldwide. The agreement encompasses joint research initiatives, such as reducing climate risks to Historic Cities in East Asia and Digital Preservation and Revitalization of Modern Heritage in East Asian Urban Centres.   

Additionally, it aims to facilitate information exchange, organize conferences and workshops, and continue to raise awareness and support for our initiatives. A notable aspect of the partnership includes the establishment of an urban heritage lab, underscoring the importance of innovation in preserving cultural identity amidst urbanization.  

"As we stand at the threshold of new possibilities, we recognize the urgent need to address the escalating risks posed by disasters caused by natural and human-induced hazards, climate change, and urban growth. These challenges threaten our shared cultural heritage, yet they also give us the unique opportunity to integrate traditional knowledge with modern technological advancements. Our collaboration aims to leverage historic city planning techniques and cutting-edge digital tools, including machine learning, to enhance documentation, interpretation, and climate risk modelling. This synthesis of old and new is vital for building resilience and improving the quality of life for urban populations worldwide," ICCROM Director-General stated. 

With WUPEN's expertise in urban planning and digital innovations complementing ICCROM's legacy in advocacy, research, and capacity building in urban heritage conservation and management, we embark on a transformative journey toward sustainable urban development. Our joint endeavour, the Urban Heritage for Sustainable Development project, is poised to pioneer innovative solutions that preserve heritage while empowering communities.   

We look forward to fostering an international network of urban heritage professionals, transcending boundaries for collective progress.