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  • What is World Heritage?

    World Heritage Convention

    The World Heritage Convention is an international convention on the protection of the world’s cultural and natural heritage sites adopted by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) in 1972. The purpose of the World Heritage Convention is to indicate and ensure the value and conservation of the world’s most essential cultural and natural heritage sites through international cooperation. States that have ratified the Convention can propose sites to be included on the list of World Heritage Sites. Finland ratified the World Heritage Convention in 1987.

    World Heritage in Finland

    There are seven World Heritage Sites in Finland. Six are cultural heritage sites and one is a natural heritage site.

    The activities of the World Heritage Sites in Finland are guided by the Operational Guidelines defined in the World Heritage Convention, the global strategy launched by the World Heritage Committee and the National World Heritage Strategy 2015–2025 by the Ministry of Education and Culture and its implementation plan.

    All UNESCO World Heritage Sites are obligated to report on their activities and the implementation of their action plans every few years. The reports must include details on the tourism management system of the site and any possible research data collected at the site. Reports and communications serve as the basis for research and development work.

    Intangible Cultural Heritage

    The Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage was adopted in 2003 and ratified by Finland in 2013. Intangible living cultural heritage may include oral tradition, performing arts, social manners, ceremonies, crafts, culinary heritage and information and skills related to the local environment. The convention highlights the importance of traditions, cultural diversity and the significance of people in the context of cultural heritage. Communities have an irreplaceable role in identifying and defining intangible cultural heritage.

    Read more about World Heritage:

    Finnish Heritage Agency: World Heritage Sites in Finland