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World Heritage Day 2023: Theme, History, Significance, and How to Celebrate


Published By: Nibandh Vinod


Last Updated: April 18, 2023, 07:57 IST

World Heritage Day 2023: One of the most significant ways is to locate and visit World Heritage Sites nearby while respecting their conservation requirements. (Image: Shutterstock)

World Heritage Day 2023: The day is celebrated on April 18 to raise awareness about the importance of cultural heritage and the need to preserve it for future generations

WORLD HERITAGE DAY 2023: World Heritage Day is celebrated on April 18. It is marked to raise awareness about the importance of cultural heritage and the need to preserve it for future generations. The day was established by the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) and was approved by the UNESCO General Conference in 1983.

The theme for World Heritage Day changes every year and is proposed by ICOMOS, with the aim of promoting cultural diversity, heritage conservation, and sustainable development. World Heritage Day encourages people around the world to explore and appreciate the cultural treasures that exist in their communities and beyond.

It provides an opportunity for individuals, organizations, and governments to come together to raise awareness about the importance of heritage sites and to promote their protection and conservation. Read on to find out more about the day:

World Heritage Day 2023: Theme

Every year, ICOMOS suggests a subject for its members, partners, and anyone interested in commemorating World Heritage Day to organize activities around. The theme for this year is Heritage Changes.

The official website stated, “In keeping with the spirit of open, innovative, constructive intergenerational dialogue, and the strategic focus of ICOMOS Triennial Scientific Plan 2021-2024, as well as the 2020 ICOMOS resolution on Approaches to Cultural Heritage. the IDMS 2023 features the following theme: HERITAGE CHANGES.”

World Heritage Day: History

Before the late 19th century, the protection of historic buildings was solely a national concern, and laws related to this matter in Europe were established during this time. Although various associations existed in each country, they were limited to national boundaries.

Cultural internationalism, as we know it today, emerged after the First World War, with the establishment of the League of Nations, and particularly after the Second World War, with the creation of the United Nations and UNESCO.

The Athens Conference, which was held in 1931 and organized by the International Museums Office, along with the Athens Charter, drafted by Le Corbusier during the fourth Assembly of the International Congresses on Modern Architecture in 1933, and later published anonymously in Paris in 1941, are major stepping stones in the development of ideas.

ICOMOS marks the “International Day for Monuments and Sites” annually on April 18, which was officially recognized by the 22nd UNESCO General Conference in 1983.

World Heritage Day: Significance

The aim of this day is to increase awareness of the value of cultural assets, the vulnerability of sites and monuments, and the measures necessary to protect and conserve them. The event highlights culture’s significance while acknowledging the numerous obstacles to achieving this goal. It encourages us to honor and appreciate the diverse cultural expressions around the world. It also seeks to promote the preservation of these cultural expressions.

Finally, World Heritage Day is observed to stay in touch with our cultural heritage and its traditions which have always reflected and shaped values, beliefs, and aspirations, and as such, define a people’s identity. Preserving our cultural history is crucial in maintaining our cultural identity as a people.

World Heritage Day: Celebrations

  1. To celebrate World Heritage Day, one of the most significant ways is to locate and visit World Heritage Sites nearby while respecting their conservation requirements.
  2. One can research the site before the visit to understand the steps needed to protect it.
  3. Furthermore, individuals can submit a site to ICOMOS that they think deserves protection for its cultural value.
  4. By doing this, one can play their part in raising awareness and preserving important sites for future generations.



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