Experts Explore Issues and Solutions for Cultural Heritage Development
The University of Central Asia's (UCA) School of Arts and Sciences in collaboration with the Open Society Institute Assistance Foundation in Tajikistan organised an academic seminar on Cultural Heritage and Sustainable Development at UCA’s Khorog campus on July 26-27. The seminar aimed at discussing the values of the tangible and intangible forms of the rich cultural heritage of Tajikistan, and their link and use for sustainable development in the country.
Presentations discussed the challenges of maintaining museums and unprotected cultural sites, reviewed the Tajik film industry, the role of endangered Pamir languages in preserving and transmitting heritage, the study of handicrafts, and explored the link between cultural heritage and developing local economies, tourism, and handicraft in various parts of Tajikistan.
“The seminar provided participants with a lot of practical advice on specific problems linking cultural heritage and development,” said Professor Ramazon Nazariev, from the Tajik Pedagogical State University. “The presenters brought vivid and visual examples from a wide range of sources, promoting many productive discussions.”
Over 20 participants from different regions of Tajikistan included researchers and practitioners from Tajik Pedagogical State University, Institute of Humanities, Institute of History and Archaeology, M. S. Andreev Museum of Ethnography of the Tajik Academy of Sciences, Khorog State University, Zerafshan and Pamirs Eco-Cultural Tourism Associations, and Editors and Journalists of the parliamentary newspaper of Sadoi Mardum and a BBC project.
Keynote presentations were delivered by Professor Ramazon Nazariev from the Tajik Pedagogical State University and Dr. Chorshanbe Ghoibnazarov from UCA’s Cultural Heritage and Humanities Unit (CHHU), and covered specific cultural features of the Tajik people, as well as research and publications of UCA’s CHHU. Representative of the World Bank, and Aga Khan Foundation (Tajikistan) also made presentations about the initiatives of their organisations in promoting cultural heritage.
Yodgor Faizov, Governor of the Gorno-Badakhshan Autonomous Oblast, addressed seminar participants about linking academic studies on cultural heritage to development, which is in line with Tajikistan’s priority areas for 2019 as the “Year of Rural Development, Tourism and Folk Crafts.”
Overall the participants highlighted the important role of the seminar in defining future cooperation between the UCA and other institutions in Tajikistan. The seminar was organised by Dr. Sultonbek Aksakolov, History Faculty Member at UCA, and Dr. Diana Pauna, Dean of UCA's School of Arts and Sciences, in cooperation with Dr. Nazarkhudo Dastambuev, Director of the Programs of Education, Art and Social Activism of the Open Society Institute Assistance Foundation Tajikistan.