Internship Testimonial: Ruby Descalzo, ICOMOS PH Intern 2020

As an environmental scientist and as a heritage advocate, I find myself eager to learn about the interconnectedness of culture and the environment. Though miles away from the Philippines, I joined ICOMOS Philippines as an intern hoping to broaden my knowledge on our cultural and natural heritage, and likewise to grow as a young professional in the field of heritage. 

I was able to accomplish a variety of tasks during my internship, focusing graphic design, branding, and research work. These included creating promotional materials for ICOMOS Philippines’ talks and webinars series as well as contributing to the mapmaking for Project Alexandria and the archaeological research project led by Dr. John Peterson. My experience was made more fruitful through the mentorship of the Communications Team members, headed by Ms. Claudia Montero as they were able to help me translate my ideas into effective communication materials. Moreover, my involvement in the research work enabled me to be exposed to various heritage conservation aspects as well as Philippine Archaelogy which afforded me the opportunity to learn about facets of history that I would not have come across were it not for Dr. Peterson’s project.

My internship in ICOMOS Philippines was my first exposure to professional heritage work. Throughout the program, I gained a better understanding of various facets of heritage: cultural landscapes, built heritage, as well as the challenges that the Philippine heritage practice currently faces. However, the most important lesson and firsthand experience that I had with the organization was seeing the interdisciplinarity of heritage work exemplified by the members. 

After my internship, I have started working as a research assistant for a research project on lake methane dynamics. While my current work mainly deals with environmental science, I hope to continue contributing in any way I can to our country’s natural and cultural heritage conservation. And in the hopes of improving my knowledge in both environmental science and heritage conservation, I hope to pursue graduate studies on ethnoecology and eventually join ICOMOS Philippines as a member this time.

Internship Testimonial: Gio Abcede, ICOMOS PH Intern 2020

During my internship, I was exposed to the different projects of the Architects Committee–from contributing to their Focus Group Discussions, to researching on the International Scientific Committee on Twentieth Century Heritage (ISC20C), and to delving into the topics for the proposed CPD Talks on proper adaptive reuse strategies and design principles application to historic buildings. These involvements enabled me to get a better understanding of what constitutes a good conservation and adaptive reuse project. Insights gathered from ISC20C advocacy projects and initiatives, which can be helpful in resolving 20th century structures’ demolition issues, and the various case studies encountered during this research aided the discussion in how to work around the challenges architects may face regarding conservation parameters. 

Other than the work for the Architects Committee, I was also exposed to more heritage research by contributing to Project Alexandria and working on the ICOMOS Philippines Online Library which both helped me gain a more comprehensive look into the current heritage conservation landscape in the Philippines. Moving forward with my architectural and documentation work, the learnings that the experience offered to me by ICOMOS, my mentors and its members is something that I am extremely grateful to have.

“Through the guidance of my mentors in ICOMOS Philippines, I was able to get a better understanding of what constitutes a good conservation/ adaptive reuse project. We looked into local and international case studies and discussed what challenges architects face in the process of designing with conservation parameters.  I hope to carry these insights and instill them in design principles for my work in Architecture and documentation projects.”

I will be completing my thesis, a proposal on a values-based adaptive reuse guide using a typo-morphological analysis of Avenida Rizal, in hopes to stir the discussion of how heritage values may be better interpreted by designers/architects. I am also taking on projects that create virtual tours for tourist destinations and heritage sites around the Philippines. I hope to get more experience in fields relating to heritage work and eventually return to ICOMOS and contribute more as a member.

Introducing Kristen Banaag, ICOMOS Philippines Intern – November 2020

Kristen Banaag, ICOMOS Philippines Intern 2020

With greater amount of online content and communications activities, ICOMOS Philippines is now looking at data protection and intellectual property management for its members. ICOMOS Philippines is happy to share that we will have a third intern working with us for the next months:

Kristen Banaag is an undergraduate student taking up Diplomacy and
International Relations with a specialization in East and Southeast Asian Studies at the Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines. She is familiar with project management, and publications and is actively involved in various organizations that are centered on youth empowerment and leadership advocacies in line with her passion to pursue philanthropic and socio-cultural causes.

Kristen wanted to be part of the ICOMOS Philippines internship program because she believes that it will enable her to productively apply the insights and takeaways to her field of study. She believes that it is essential to widen one’s perspective on the cultural diversity of one’s country to successfully imbue a positive impact through her prospective line of work.

Aside from working on content creation, copywriting, and social media management, Kristen will also contribute to developing the intellectual property and copyright protocols and develop a marketing plan to increase the audience of ICOMOS Philippines across potentially interested groups even outside the heritage field . This work will be guided by the Secretariat, Carissa Veloso and Trustee, Kara Garilao. She will also be supporting the creation of the digital library of ICOMOS Philippines under the mentorship of Communications Committee Member, Rancho Arcilla.

Welcome, Kristen! We’re very pleased to have your assistance.

Internship Testimonial: Patricia Panganiban, ICOMOS PH Intern 2018

Under the mentorship of Tina Paterno, I had my internship with ICOMOS Philippines in 2018. Together with Sen Roxas, we worked on understanding the state of conservation practices in the country: What sites get conserved? What are the methods being used? With these in mind, we kicked off our baseline research by gathering reports on conservation projects in the country, with emphasis on building typology, regional project distribution, funding, and conservation methodologies and practices.

“The work in ICOMOS Philippines gave me a good starting overview of cultural work being done in the country… The experience that I gained through my research helped prepare me for the challenges that come with setting up a museum, especially the research into an institution’s history.”

From emailing different government agencies, to scouring libraries, and getting access to reports, our work, though arduous, was made more fruitful by the help and insight offered by various ICOMOS Philippines members who willingly shared their experiences, opinions, and suggestion to aid our research. The experience that I gained in my ICOMOS internship has helped prepare me for the challenges of my current work and even beyond.

ICOMOS Philippines’ internship program equipped me with the necessary knowledge and background as I witnessed the work conducted by the National Museum and the National Historical Commission of the Philippines. Currently, I am part of the development team of the Nayong Pilipino Foundation’s museum project, Museo ng Nayong Pilipino. Thanks to my ICOMOS experience, I am able to handle the challenges faced as we develop our collection and exhibits.


For interested students and or new graduates who would like to take internship with ICOMOS Philippines, please contact  info@icomosphilippines.com

ICOMOS Philippines Elected New Board of Trustees and Officers

2020 – ICOMOS Philippines recently concluded a Special Membership Meeting on November 30, 2020, 9:30AM (GMT+8) in a Zoom meeting. The Special Membership Meeting is in lieu of the ICOMOS Philippines Annual Meeting that was originally scheduled for July 2, 2020 as indicated in Article II Section 2 of the by-laws, which was not held due to community quarantines and restrictions imposed to prevent the spread of the coronavirus pandemic.

The main agendas of the Special Membership Meeting were the presentation of the Term Report of Trustees and the Election of New Board of Trustees and Officers. The Meeting ended successfully concluded with new Board of Trustees and Officers.

For the new Term, Tina Paterno remains to be the ICOMOS Philippines President. With her are Ivan Henares as Vice President, Kara Garilao as Corporate Secretary, Richard Daenos as Executive Secretary, Erik Akpedonu as Treasurer, Kate Lim for the EPWG Representative position, and Claudia Montero as Communications Officer.

Know more about the people behind the International Council on Monuments and Sites Philippines: ICOMOS Philippines Board of Trustees and Officers

Introducing Supitcha Sutthanonkul and Ceirene Malolos, ICOMOS Philippines Interns – November 2020

New ICOMOS Philippines interns. Supitcha Sutthanonkul (left) and Ceirene Malolos (right)

With rising interest on collaborative heritage research, mentorship and the development of communications strategies for the organization, ICOMOS Philippines is happy to share that we will have two new interns working with us for the next three months:

Supitcha ‘Maysa’ Sutthanonkul is a heritage studies student from Thailand who is pursuing her master’s degree in World Heritage Studies in Brandenburg University of Technology in Cottbus, Germany. She has a background in architecture with a major in interior architecture. She has done projects related to history, heritage, architectural conservation and urban development. Her interests include industrial heritage, sustainable development, and adaptive- reuse of architecture in the urban context.

Maysa decided to join the internship program to learn about heritage conservation in a different context from Thailand gaining experience from one of the very active national committees of ICOMOS. She hopes to use skills and advice from her mentors, Gabriel Caballero and John Peterson to develop fruitful research for the heritage field in the future.

Maysa will be researching on the current state of the World Heritage Tentative List of the Philippines for the next three months.


Ceirene Malolos is a graduate of Communication Arts from De La Salle University Manila and is currently taking her Masters in ASEAN Studies at the University of the Philippines Open University. Concurrent to her graduate studies, she participated in the ASEAN University Network – ASEAN Credit Transfer System at the National University of Singapore; and she was also a Darmasiswa Scholarship awardee taking Pure Fine Arts (Seni Rupa Murni) at the Indonesian Institute of the Arts in Denpasar, Bali in Indonesia.

By applying at the ICOMOS Internship Program, Cen intends to grow her expertise and knowledge on Philippine culture and heritage adding to her on-going area studies track, share and raise awareness about the current state of her country’s own culture and heritage – in the Philippines and beyond.

Aside from the advancement of the Project Alexandria research under the tutelage of Tina Paterno, Cen will further develop the organization’s communications strategy, particularly reviewing the video and graphic content to further the objectives of effectively communicating with the public, stakeholders and its members. She will be working with Communications Committee Member, Claudia Montero to further develop the brand of ICOMOS Philippines.

Welcome, Maysa and Cen! We’re very pleased to have your assistance.

Gabriel Caballero appointed as the ICOMOS International Focal Point for the Sustainable Development Goals for 2021 – 2023

Last 3 November 2020, ICOMOS International announced the appointment of ICOMOS Philippines Member Mr. Gabriel Caballero as the incoming Focal Point for the UN Sustainable Development Goals for 2021-2023.

Considering the urgencies the world’s societies are facing today affecting the cultural and natural heritage, and the potential of heritage to help address these, the 2030 Agenda is an imperative to transform the framework of cultural heritage protection in the next ten years. Cultural heritage goes beyond monuments. It has a crucial role for the well-being of communities, which needs to be harnessed for sustainable urban and rural and socio-economic development, in particular for post-COVID recovery strategies at international, national, and local levels. ICOMOS is a leading global voice in integrating cultural heritage within sustainable development framework. The SDGs Working Group coordinates ICOMOS response to the 2030 Agenda, through advocacy, policy, localizing of the SDGs.

Here is what Gabriel Caballero said to the SDGWG explaining his thoughts on the next years ahead.

As Focal Point, Mr. Caballero will act as a facilitator and coordinator for ICOMOS International’s work in relation to the global sustainable development policy arena. He will also coordinate the activities of the SDGs Working Group (SDGWG) under the supervision of the Working Group Chair and the ICOMOS Director General, and in close coordination with the International Secretariat. He is mandated to push forward the implementation of the ICOMOS Action Plan for cultural heritage and localizing the SDGs.

ICOMOS Philippines would like to congratulate Mr. Caballero for his success and further contribution to the scientific work of linking heritage with the movement of sustainable development globally!

Testimonial of Kenneth Tua from the ICOMOS Internship Programme

Unlike my other work in the private and public sectors, working in ICOMOS PH was the most fulfilling and unique of all. I had the experience to learn from the best of the best in the Philippine Cultural Heritage sector. I felt valued by members, who listened to my ideas for the organization and its stakeholders.

I applied for this internship because my scheduled trips in Asia for my masters degree were cancelled due to the pandemic. Little did I know it would open a huge door of opportunities for me- destiny indeed. I was assigned to the baseline pilot study for the research entitled: “Philippine Landscape Heritage Education: Review of the preparedness of Landscape Architecture curricula in the Philippines for the Specialization of Landscape Heritage Conservation (LHC)“. In this study, I was able to reach out and collaborate with stakeholders such as the Philippine Committee on International Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscapes (ISCCL), Philippine Association of Landscape Architects (PALA), Technical Committee of Landscape Architecture – Commission on Higher Education (TCLA – CHED), and Professional Regulation Commission – Board of Landscape Architecture (PRC – BOLA). Moreover, I was able to join committee meetings of ICOMOS PH wherein I was able to contribute and brainstorm to timely and pressing heritage issues, which increased my connection to Philippine Heritage.

The mentorship alone was already a worthwhile learning experience. Additionally, I was able to maximize my professional skills in academic research, stakeholder engagement, and project management. What I treasure the most is the professional and personal relationship I gained from the organization and its highly acclaimed members.

After this holistic internship, I will be continuing on to my final year of my masters degree in Europe and in the future, I will be doing another internship abroad, but this time I know I am more equipped and prepared, all thanks to ICOMOS Philippines.

For interested students or new graduates who would like to take internship with the organization, please contact info@icomosphilippines.com

Call for Candidature – ICOMOS Philippines Board of Trustees (2020-2023)

In accordance with the ICOMOS Philippines By-laws, the 2020 General Assembly will elect the Board of Trustees for a term of three years (2020-2023). The Board of Trustees will elect among themselves the Chairman / President, Vice President, Secretary, and Treasurer. The Information Session, held last 30 October 2020, provided more information on proposed policies, procedures, and by-laws amendments which further elaborated the scopes and responsibilities of the Board of Trustees.

Functions and Powers of the Board of Trustees

The Board of Trustees shall have general charge of the property, business and affairs of the Organization with the power to manage, direct, and supervise the same under its collective responsibility as provided in the By-laws and the Policies and Procedure. Trustees shall:

  • Appoint or elect all officers, employees, and other administrative officers of the Organization as may be designated, except junior officers and minor employees; to define their duties and to discipline or remove them.
  • Purchase or otherwise acquire for the Organization rights and privileges of properties, and to manage, conserve, and invest the funds of the Organization
  • Approve the annual budget of the Organization
  • Delegate from time to time any of the powers of the Board which can lawfully be delegated to any standing or special committee or to any agent or officers and to appoint any person or persons to act as agents of the Organization with such powers and upon such terms as it may deem fit.

Additional Scope of Work of the Board of Trustees (based on the Policies and Procedure 2020)

Members of the ICOMOS Philippines Board of Trustees donate time and expertise to the Organization and they are part of a working board. As such, Trustees are expected to do the following tasks:

  1. Donate a minimum of 10-20 hours a month of their time to the organization. Each trustee must take charge of one of the following for the duration of their tenure: staff management; fundraising; or 1 project per year
  2. Assist the President in the cultivation of donors, partners, supporters, collaborators, allies, and other stakeholders
  3. Ensure the organization’s activities are compliant and in furtherance of its mission in compliance with international parent organizations and local mission / vision
  4. Engage in the creation of long and short-term goals with the President
  5. Assist in review of financial statement
  6. Respond to email within 48 hours for items for Board approval, as and when required.

Application Procedure:

Interested parties should submit their letter of intent and (1) curriculum vitae, (2) letter of intent, and (3) proposed agenda for the next 3 years to the ICOMOS Philippines Secretariat at info@icomosphilippines.com with the email title “Trustees Application 2020 – Last Name” by 15 November 2020.

For more information on the position and how to apply, please read the information below.

ICOMOS Philippines Information Session

ICOMOS Philippines’ Board of Trustees and Officers will be holding an 𝗜𝗻𝗳𝗼𝗿𝗺𝗮𝘁𝗶𝗼𝗻 𝗦𝗲𝘀𝘀𝗶𝗼𝗻 on 𝗢𝗰𝘁𝗼𝗯𝗲𝗿 𝟯𝟬 (𝗙𝗿𝗶𝗱𝗮𝘆), 𝟴:𝟬𝟬-9:3𝟬 𝗣𝗠 (𝗚𝗠𝗧+𝟴). In this event, the Board of Trustees will discuss the following:

  • Proposed update for the organization’s by-laws, policies and procedures
  • Voting procedures and candidature details for the upcoming board elections in November 2020

Members are highly encouraged to attend in preparation for the upcoming General Assembly and Board Elections. Members may RSVP through email to the secretariat at: info@icomosphilippines.com