ICOMOS Philippines’ members presented in the People-Nature-Culture Forum 2022

To provide how management and conservation of heritage places can give a dynamic and mutually beneficial role in society today and long into the future, the People-Nature-Culture (PNC) World Heritage Leadership (WHLP), a capacity-building programme delivered by IUCN, ICCROM, UNESCO World Heritage Centre, and other organizations, with the support of the Norwegian Ministry of Climate and Environment and other partners, is established to equip heritage site managers worldwide.

Among the fully-funded scholars is ICOMOS PH member Dr. Laya Boquiren Gonzales, who was invited to participate and present at the PNC Forum, which celebrated the conclusion of the 2017-2022 Korea-ICCROM Funds in Trust, the approaching completion of Phase I of the World Heritage Leadership Programme (WHLP) and the 50th anniversary of the World Heritage Convention. The event was held from October 10 – 12, 2022 in Suwon, Republic of Korea (ROK)

Dr. Boquiren – Gonzales presented “How can we establish good governance arrangements that ensure they benefit from the conservation of those places?” on Day 2 under the theme of Who benefits from heritage.

Dr. Laya Boquiren – Gonzales presenting the case on the Interlinkages of Built Heritage and Intangible Cultural Heritage, and the C’s of Governance at the PNC Forum

Dr. Boquiren-Gonzales provided highlights on her presentation from the forum:

The conservation of the Santiago Apostol Parish in Betis, Guagua, Pampanga, a National Cultural Treasure, is an excellent case of community-based safeguarding of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) and application of the C’s of Governance, including the following:

  • collaboration of management actors;
  • concerted efforts of multiple stakeholders including local champions;
  • conservation anchored on a sense of collective devotion and pride and not only tourism as the sole motivation;
  • coordination among a consulting committee;
  • collaboration of local cooperatives for the safeguarding of ICH;
  • celebrations that dramatize the significance of traditions and honor collective memory;
  • contracting technical experts in the conservation of built heritage, a convergence of space of interests;
  • consensus and coalition-building;
  • cooperation strengthened by social relationships; and
  • collective pride rooted in one’s occupational identity and place affinity.

The claiming of public spaces (SDG 11.5 and SDG 11.7), originally intended for disaster mitigation, became an intergenerational significance collective skills formation anchored on place wisdom (the space is now an artisans’ haven and eco park).

Substantial impacts include the integration of woodcarving into the Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) system by local champions and acknowledgment of the need to integrate heritage into basic educational pedagogy. Heritage, including intangible properties, provide livelihood (SDG 8) entrepreneurial opportunities beyond mere employment (SDG 10), a sense of well-being and contentment, pride, social cohesion, and place affinity. It is life itself.

The conservation of built heritage and safeguarding of craft production unfold in relationships forged over time across levels of the locality. Decisions are arrived at through consensus. Concerted efforts are the product of coalition-building.

Ideally, cooperation is institutionalized or formalized under the coordinated efforts of national government agencies and provincial and municipal governments. When the local government and national government agencies enter the picture, the conservation of built heritage and safeguarding of the intangibles must be achieved through efficient planning and mobilization of resources, and reflected in Key Performance Indicators (KPIs); implemented in Programs, Projects, and Activities (PPAS); and audited using the right monitoring and evaluation tools.

Conservation efforts are best protected by legislation and enshrined in the constitution. However, the strength of implementing the terms of such arrangements and the rule of legislation are just as potent as the combined aspirations of communities. Therefore, community empowerment and collective action must persist above all.

To know more about the PNC forum, kindly visit this link ➡️ People-Nature-Culture Forum takes a closer look at the benefits of heritage places | ICCROM

For more information on ICOMOS Philippines ➡️ https://philippines.icomos.org/ 

#ICOMOS #ICOMOSPH #HeritageProfessionals #InAction #SustainableDevelopmentGoals #LikasKayangPagUnlad #PhilippineHeritage #PAMANA2030 #PNCForum2022  

Pilot study on the Cultural Landscape Heritage Conservation (CLHC) specialization in the Philippines by ICOMOS Philippines’ members of the International Scientific Committee on Cultural Landscapes

Are we prepared to be teaching landscape heritage conservation? We have many cultural landscapes that need to be preserved, but few formally trained practitioners. 

The Journal of Cultural Heritage Management and Sustainable Development published the research on the Cultural Landscape Heritage Conservation (CLHC) specialization in the Philippines. The study by ICOMOS Philippines’ members Arch. Kenneth J. Tua together with fellow Cultural Landscape specialists LArch. Gabriel Caballero and LArch. Susan C. Aquino-Ong was in coordination with the current four  universities offering landscape architecture in the country: the University of the Philippines – Diliman, University of San Carlos, Bulacan State University, and University of San Agustin. Relevant stakeholders were also consulted in the study, such as the Philippine Association of Landscape Architects (PALA), the Technical Committee for Landscape Architecture, Commission on Higher Education (TCLA-CHED), and the Professional Regulation Commission – Board of Landscape Architecture (PRC BOLA).

The peer-reviewed article reviews the preparedness of the Landscape Architecture curricula in the Philippines for the CLHC specialization and will serve as a starting point to engage discussions with the PRC BOLA in its development of the CLHC specialization currently being planned. The end goal is to develop a training program for landscape architecture students from the current four universities, and landscape architects and heritage professionals. 

It utilizes the framework of Harvard professor emeritus Carl Steinitz’s ‘Geodesign’,  in formulating a developmental process and validation of the interrelationship and collaborative activity of the identified thematic areas and courses in terms of IT, geographic sciences, design professions and the people of the place. 

If a program is created, then the hope is that more technically proficient practitioners can create methodologies and policies to preserve and protect places of cultural and natural significance.  

The work has been presented initially at the NAMI: 2021 PALA National Convention, and has been uploaded as open source here: https://openarchive.icomos.org/id/eprint/2539/ . The published and peer-reviewed version is available in this DOI: https://doi.org/10.1108/JCHMSD-11-2021-0194 .

ICOMOS Philippines congratulates the work of Arch. Tua, LArch. Caballero and LArch. Aquino-Ong for this significant publication! 

Publication Cover Page Photo from Emerald Publishing and ICOMOS Philippines

For more information on ICOMOS Philippines ➡️ https://philippines.icomos.org/ 

#ICOMOS #ICOMOSPH #LandscapeHeritage #Conservation #SustainableDevelopmentGoals #LikasKayangPagUnlad #PhilippineHeritage #PAMANA2030 

ICOMOS Philippines invited to Workshop of Manila’s Cultural Mapping and Inventory

How to balance heritage with the demands of a modern city? In exploring ways to preserve the rich cultural character of Manila, the City Government of Manila invited stakeholders to present their opinions. Among organizations invited was ICOMOS Philippines, represented by Trustee Erik Akpedonu, co-author (with Fernando Zialcita) of “Endangered Splendor: Manila’s Architectural Heritage 1571-1960.
“Manila’s Tourism Stakeholder’s Seminar/Workshop on Cultural Mapping and Inventory” was the Tourism Month celebration, the City Government of Manila’s Department of Tourism, Culture and Arts of Manila (DTCAM), held the last September 22, 2022, at Universidad De Manila.
Mr. Akpedonu proposed a number of legislative measures to better protect built heritage in Manila:

  1. To legislate (by city ordinance or executive order) that the Office of the Building Official, before issuing demolition, renovation, or redevelopment permits, not only cross-check the proposed development site against the list of officially NCCA/NHCP- or LGU-declared heritage structures (as is currently the case), but to also cross-check against a list of PRESUMED IMPORTANT CULTURAL PROPERTIES (buildings 50 years and older, works of National Artists, etc.) as defined by Republic Act 10066 (The Heritage Act) and as compiled by PRECUP and Manila`s own Tourism Office, before issuing such permits;
  2. To make public by online posting the minutes of all official meetings discussing any variations to any existing zoning laws for specific individual constrictions projects (which to date does not seem to be the case); and
  3. To exempt declared heritage structures and Presumed Important Cultural Properties from Property Tax under certain conditions.

The meeting was attended by representatives from Manila`s Tourism Office and Office of the Building Official, barangay chairpersons, various NGOs (e.g., Grupo Kalinangan, SAHTA, ICOMOS PH) and the academe (e.g., Dela Salle University, Mapua University).

Photo from Mr. Erik Akpedonu and ICOMOS Philippines
Photo from Mr. Erik Akpedonu and ICOMOS Philippines
Photo from Mr. Erik Akpedonu and ICOMOS Philippines
Photo from Mr. Erik Akpedonu and ICOMOS Philippines

Mr. Akpedonu is co-author (with Fernando Zialcita) of “Endangered Splendor: Manila’s Architectural Heritage 1571-1960 (Volume 1: The Center)”, a complete compendium of Spanish, American and early independence period structures. The book chronicles the story of Manila’s rise during the galleon trade from a small port to the nation’s capital and the evolution of its heritage architecture. It is also a commentary on the current state of our built heritage, with discussions of current restoration practices, revitalization, and proposed economic uses for its preservation and protection. Book Preview: Facebook Watch

To know more about the book, visit and/or order in this link ➡️ http://bitly.ws/uGqb

For more information on ICOMOS Philippines ➡️ https://philippines.icomos.org/

#ICOMOS #ICOMOSPH #ManilaCultural Heritage #SustainableDevelopmentGoals #LikasKayangPagUnlad #PhilippineHeritage #PAMANA2030

ICOMOS Philippines Open Forum Series

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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 ??????????? ??????? on ??????? ?? (??????), ?:??-9:3? ?? (???+?). 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

Ivan Henares elected as Secretary General of ICTC for 2020 – 2023

Last 13 October 2020, ICOMOS Philippines Member Mr. Ivan Henares was elected as Secretary General of the ICOMOS International Cultural Tourism Committee (ICTC) for 2020-2023.

The ICTC is a global network of cultural heritage, conservation and tourism professionals & academics; and a platform for multi-disciplinary and multi-stakeholder research and activities with the aim of achieving high standards in policy directions and management of cultural heritage at historic sites and tourism destinations.  Mainstreaming cross-cutting issues places conservation and cultural tourism centre stage in sustainable development agendas. As an international professional network ICTC seeks to work at a strategic level to advise governments and influence international bodies – UNESCO, UNWTO & IUCN – to adopt policies and practices that better support cultural heritage conservation in the context of tourism development. 

As Secretary General, Mr. Henares will be responsible for assisting the president of the committee in the running of ICTC and will circulate, direct, and/or coordinate internal communications among the members, to external parties and the ICOMOS Secretariat. He has previously served as Vice President for the Scientific Committee for 2 terms, from 2014-2017 and 2017-2020.

Here is what Ivan Henares’ response when asked what will be the future of cultural tourism amidst the global pandemic.

ICOMOS Philippines would like to congratulate Mr. Henares for his success and further contribution to the scientific work of cultural tourism professionals globally!