Water and Heritage for the Future Conference: Policy and Outreach (day 2)

Start date
End date

Humans have long shaped their environment in response to water: from drainage and drinking to defense against flooding and to waterways for shipping, water is a core aspect of heritage structures and narratives in cities and landscapes. In the coming decades, the impact of climate change will threaten existing heritage on coast lines, low-lying delta cities and rural areas as well as irrigation systems and water supplies around the world. Focusing on low-lying deltas, the cities and rural areas placed in them we argue that a comprehensive and interconnected approach to historical research, policy-making, education and outreach is necessary to develop sustainable adaptation strategies for water-related heritage. Such an approach requires novel theoretical, methodological and conceptual approaches as well as instruments that acknowledge the inseparability of natural and cultural heritage, the interconnection of spatial and conceptual aspects of heritage, and the importance of water related heritage for the future including the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). They also require new policy, education, and outreach tools.

The Centre for Global Heritage and Development together with ICOMOS Netherlands cooperate in the collection and presentation of scientific evidence, and the development of policy relevant documentation and awareness raising materials in the project “Water and Heritage for the Future”. This initiative is to stress both within ICOMOS, IUCN, ICOM and other heritage institutions, as well with water management related organizations the relevance of water related cultural and natural heritage for the future. On the 25th of November at the TU-Delft, participants will establish the scientific concepts and evidence from examples from around the world of traditional water heritage icons (material, conceptual and spiritual), still existing today and as beacons for the future. On the 26th of November in Fort Vechten, Utrecht, participants will build upon the outcomes of the fist day (Science Day) and discuss the modes to present and role out the scientific outcomes into policy development, public awareness raising and education.


Fort Vechten, Bunnik


Arrival and coffee

10h00 – 10h15
Jhr.Ir. Diederik Six, President of ICOMOS-NL

10h15 – 10h30
Water and Heritage for the Future
Ir. Henk van Schaik, ICOMOS-NL Water Ambassador

Cultural heritage and Water Safety of Flanders for the future: the cases of Zennegat and Scheldekaaien
Nancy Thiels and Soefie Duytschaever, Onroerend Erfgoed, Vlaamse Overheid

11h00 – 11h30
Plenary Presentation outcomes Delft workshops
Prof.Dr.Ir. Carola Hein and the Leads of these workshops

11h30 – 13h00
Pitches on institutional initiatives and programmes:

– Water Heritage initiatives
Dr. Laszlo Hayde, ICID

– The WatCH – Water Cultural Heritage network
Dr. Heleni Porfyriou, National Research Council of Italy, CNR-ICVBC, Rome.

– Water and Heritage in World Water Forum 8, March 2018, Brazil
Dr. Sergio Ribeiro, Brazil (video)

– The World Water Assessment Programme and Water Heritage
Prof.Dr. Stefan Uhlenbrook, WWAP, UNESCO

Reflections on relevance and next steps for Water and Heritage in ICOMOS including the General Assembly in Delhi November 2017, merging with Scientific Committees and linkages with the Culture-Nature Journey:
– Ir. Bénédicte Selfslagh IFA (Vice-President ICOMOS-BE / President ICOMOS Vlaanderen-Brussel, Chairperson European Heritage Label)
– Prof.Dr. Hae Un Rii (ICOMOS-Republic of Korea)
– Meisha Hunter MA (ICOMOS-US)
– Dr. S.C. Yu, (TIIWE, Taiwan)

13h00 – 14h30

13h30 – 14h15
Guided tour around Fort Vechten / visit to the Waterlinie Museum

14h15 – 14h45
The relevance of Fort Vechten as Water Heritage for the Future
Caroline Bugter, Province of Utrecht (tbc).

14h45 – 16h15

  1. Public awareness:

The role of musea:
– introduction
Jurn Buisman (Museum Geelvinck / ICOMOS-NL Board)

– Björn Stenvers (Associated Amsterdam Museums / ICOM Board)
– Paul van de Laar (Erasmus University / Museum Rotterdam)
– Jeroen Kool (Water Museum)
– Bas Kreuger (Fort Vechten).

The role of the media:
– Gijsbert Wolvers (Reformatorisch Dagblad) tbc

2. Education:

Academic education:
Manuela Triggianese, Centre for Global Heritage Development

Tim Murck, Spektor

16h15 – 17h00
Reception and drinks

Throughout the day the video film ‘Water & Heritage’ will be shown and our book “Water & Heritage” is available at the desk.

Please note that the above program may still be subject to change. Please check the website of ICOMOS-NL for the final program.

Members of ICOMOS and other interested parties, including students, can participate for a small contribution.
For both conference days, the invited guests, speakers and organizers are free of charge.
Please register here before 20th November 2016 and you will receive your ticket by e-mail.

For the previous conference day ("Science Day"), Friday 25th November 2016 at the TU Delft, you will find information here.