unesco - cultural survival and revival in the buddhist sangha [2006]

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Phase II Third Project Progress Report July 2005 - June 2006

Cultural Survival and Revival in the Buddhist SanghaDocumentation, Education and Training to Revitalize Traditional Decorative Arts and Building Crafts in the Buddhist Temples of AsiaSeptember 20061

...living traditions of Buddhism in the region are a vibrant, integral part of the local identity and cultural resources. At the same time, they are under threat from development pressures; shifting sociocultural tastes which privilege modern ways; and discontinuities in transmission of traditions and skills...


ContentsFact sheet Executive Summary of Report 1. Background 2. Activities Undertaken 2.1 2.1.1 2.1.2 2.1.3 2.1.4 2.1.5 2.1.6 2.1.7 2.1.8 2.1.9 2.1.10 2.1.11 2.1.12 2.1.13 2.1.14 2.1.15 2.1.16 2.1.17 2.1.18 2.1.19 2.1.20 2.1.21 2.1.22 Project implementation at sites Bhutan Cambodia Cambodia (Phnom Penh) Cambodia (Siem Riep) China (Sichuan) China (Yunnan) India (Arunachal Pradesh) India (Ladakh) India (Sikkim) India (Sikkim - Replication) Lao PDR (General) Lao PDR (Bokeo) Lao PDR (Champassak) Lao PDR (Luang Prabang) Lao PDR (Savannakhet) Mongolia Nepal (Lalitpur) Nepal (Mustang) Sri Lanka (Kandy) Thailand (General) Thailand (Nakhon Si Thammarat) Thailand (Nan) 5 6 7 9 8 8 8 10 10 12 13 15 16 17 19 20 21 22 23 25 26 28 30 31 31 32 33 36 36 36

2.2 Project monitoring 2.2.1 Monitoring by UNESCO 2.2.2 Monitoring by national mentors

2.3 Sub-regional networking 40 2.3.1 Theravada Caucus (Nan, Thailand) December 2006 40 2.3.2 Joint implementation activities planned 38 2.4 Developing synergies with external initiatives 2.4.1 Sustainable Tourism Development in Living Buddhism Areas 41 42


AnnexesAnnex A Theravada Caucus, Nan, Thailand, December 2005 - Agenda Annex B Theravada Caucus, Nan, Thailand, December 2005 - List of Participants Annex C Theravada Caucus, Nan, Thailand, December 2005 - Report Annex D South Asia Training of Trainers Workshop for Culture Heritage Specialist Guides (Focusing on Living Buddhism) Paro, Bhutan, May 2006 Executive summary


Fact sheetProject Title Cultural Survival and Revival in the Buddhist Sangha: Documentation, Education and Training to Revitalize Traditional Decorative Arts and Building Crafts in the Buddhist Temples of Asia.

Executing Agency UNESCO Bangkok Cooperation Partner Nordic World Heritage Foundation Funding Source Government of Norway Local/national counterpart agencies/organizations Project Duration (Phase II) 4 Years (2004-2007) Project Implementation Sites (18 total) Bhutan Thimphu (proposed Tentative List site) Cambodia Phnom Penh, Siem Riep China Sichuan, Xishuangbanna India Arunachal Pradesh, Ladakh, Sikkim Lao PDR Bokeo, Champasak (World Heritage site), Luang Prabang (World Heritage site), Savanakhet Mongolia Kharakhorin (World Heritage site) Nepal Lalitpur, Mustang Sri Lanka Kandy (World Heritage site) Thailand Nan (Tentative List site), Nakhon Si Thammarat National Implementing Agencies National/Provincial/Local government bodies National/provincial/local Buddhist sangha Keywords Heritage conservation; revitalization of traditional knowledge, skills and practices; technical, vocational training; sustainable livelihood opportunities; replication of best practice Sector Culture, tangible and intangible Budget (including 13% overhead Year 1: US$ 420,455 Year 2: US$ 699,785 Year 3-4: US$ 613,857 TOTAL: US$ 1,734,097


Executive SummaryThe regional expansion of Phase II of the UNESCO Cultural Survival and Revival in the Buddhist Sangha: Documentation, Education and Training to Revitalize Traditional Decorative Arts and Building Crafts in the Buddhist Temples of Asia was launched in January 2005. The Strategy Development Workshop was conducted in Luang Prabang, Lao PDR in May 2005. Project activities on-site commenced after the workshop, with the earliest starting in late 2005. Site preparatory activities included the formation of local organizing committees and supervisory committees, the drafting of curricula and the identification of teachers and the preparation of training materials. Currently, fourteen sites have commenced on-site documentation and training activities, namely Phnom Penh and Siem Riep (Cambodia), Sichuan and Xishuangbanna (China), Bokeo, Champasak and Luang Prabang (Lao PDR); Ladakh and Sikkim, (India); Kharakhorin (Mongolia); Lalitpur and Mustang (Nepal); Nan and Nakhon Si Thammarat (Thailand). Awareness-raising and institutional capacity building activities are still underway at another four sites, namely Thimphu (Bhutan), Arunachal Pradesh (India), Savannakhet (Lao PDR), and Kandy (Sri Lanka). This will lay the groundwork for documentation and training activities. Due to the differing starting times for each site, reflecting varying levels of institutional capacity and preparedness, the progress of each site ranges. The majority of sites was implementing or had completed their second cycle of project implementation. Early starters like Mongolia were already in their third cycle of implementation by mid-2006. In accordance with the project design, the cycles have focused on the following activities. First-cycle activities have focused on: Network building Documentation of crafts traditions Identification and prioritization of training topics Identification of trainers Development of curricula Preparation of training materials Launch on-site pilot training in selected high-priority topics Second-cycle activities have focused on: Launch training activities for high-priority topics using training methodologies tested in cycle 1 Continue with documentation of crafts traditions Continue with the production and dissemination of training materials 6 As the project moves into the final 18 months of implementation, it is expected that that sites should all achieve a level of sustainability by the end of the fourth cycle: Third-cycle activities will focus on: Expansion of training through additional platforms and curricula Continue with documentation of crafts traditions Continue with the production and dissemination of training materials Development of curriculum for lowerpriority topics Fourth-cycle activities will focus on: Consolidation of training platforms and curricula for long-term replication Production and dissemination of final training materials for use in future training Production of final documentation outputs for use in future training or research activities In terms of sub-regional networking and mentoring activities, the second sub-regional caucus was held in Nan, Thailand in December 2005, with the participation of all Theravada sites. A third subregional caucus for the Vajrayana sites was planned for Ladakh, India in July 2006, which was unfortunately cancelled to political instability. Regarding partnerships with external initiatives, UNESCO and the Asian Development Bank (ADB) have cooperated in the development of Living Buddhism sites within the context of sustainable tourism. In particular, a training programme for cultural heritage specialist guides has been launched with a focus on Living Buddhism sites. This programme provides a channel for the broader dissemination of educational material developed through the Cultural Survival and Revival project to other local concerned stakeholders who have an impact on the safeguarding of the temples and other Buddhist heritage. The first training of trainers workshop for the South Asian countries was held in Paro, Bhutan in May 2006 and a second workshop is being planned for the Greater Mekong Sub-region countries in Luang Prabang, Lao PDR in October 2006. Both workshops are being undertaken with co-financing support from the ADB.

I. Background

The Cultural Survival and Revival in the Buddhist Sangha: Documentation, Education and Training to Revitalize Traditional Decorative Arts and Building Crafts in the Temples of Asia project was initiated by UNESCO in 2000 with primary support from the Government of Norway, and supplementary funding from the Government of New Zealand. It aims to build local capacity in the conservation of intangible heritage via revitalization of traditional artisan skills among local caretakers of heritage, in particular amongst religious communities such as the Buddhist sangha.1 The project was developed in response to requests from Buddhist communities for assistance in maintaining religious cultural heritage, which is the main repository of local cultural heritage. The project targets reviving traditional decorative arts and building crafts as well as developing preventative conservation skills. Phase I (2000-3) was implemented in Luang Prabang, Lao PDR, in collaboration with the Luang Prabang Department of Information and Culture and the Laotian Buddhist sangha . Through the establishment of the Training Centre for Laotian Traditional Temple Arts and Building Crafts, the project has succeeded in documenting and revitalizing a number of traditional decorative arts and building crafts. Phase II (2004-7) will ensure the ongoing implementation of the project in the Phase I pilot site of Luang Prabang, and a regional expansion 7

throughout the Theravada and Vajrayana (Tibetantradition) Buddhist countries in Asia. The inclusion of sites throughout Theravada and Vajrayana Buddhist areas will maximize the regional impact of the project. Through appropriate adaptation of the pilot project methodology, local representatives will implement projects that will aim to preserve of the intangible culture heritage of their sites. Phase II adopts a cluster approach to implementation, which allows for intra-regional and regional cross-mentoring through networking and partnership building. This strategy is expected to build in sustainability of results in the long-run, with the mobilization of national and regional partners brought into the planning, implementation and ongoi


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