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UNESCO Participates in the Workshop on Disaster Management for Cultural Heritage Sites Held by the Ministry of Education and Culture at Borobudur 9-13 June 2014



The Borobudur Conservation Office of the Indonesian Ministry of Education and Culture conducted a workshop on ‘Disaster Management for Cultural Heritage Sites’ from 9 to13 June 2014, at the Borobudur World Heritage site. The workshop was attended by more than 30 participants from various cultural conservation sites in Indonesia as well as local government representatives. The key aim of the workshop was to increase the capacity of stakeholders working at cultural heritage sites to respond and mitigate potential disasters.

The workshop was officially opened by Mr Iskandar Siregar from the Borobudur Conservation Office who highlighted that the event was a joint-effort disaster mitigation in the cultural heritage sites. Mr. Masanori Nagaoka, the Head of the Culture Unit at the UNESCO Jakarta Office, gave a presentation entitled “General Overview of UNESCO Activities on Disaster and Risk Management (DRM)”. Mr. Nagaoka provided information on types of disasters occurring in the different parts of the world, how this impacts cultural heritage, and some of the major DRM challenges sites face.  Mr. Nagaoka outlined that one of the main challenges to the effectiveness of a DRM plan is the lack of coordination between the site management systems for the particular heritage property and the organizational set-up, policies and procedures for disaster management in the city or region in which the property is located.  In conclusion, Mr. Nagaoka outlined that UNESCO has developed a Resource Manual on “Managing Disaster Risks for World Heritage” in 2010 under the coordination of ICCROM, ICOMOS, IUCN and UNESCO World Heritage Center. The session attracted interest from the audiences and invited fruitful discussions especially on UNESCO’s experiences in implementing disaster preparedness activities and how it linked to local initiatives. 
The rest of the workshop covered topics including Policies on Heritage Conservation for Cultural Heritage in Disaster-Risk Area, Basic Principles of Disaster in Indonesia, Introduction to Hazard, Vulnerability and Capacity (HVC), Management for Disaster Mitigation on Cultural Heritage, Basic Emergency Management Command System, Methods and Tools for Disaster Mitigation & Risk Assessment, Disaster Mitigation Planning on National/ Regional Spatial Planning, Management on Evacuation and Disaster Management Scenario, and samples of Recovery Programs in West Sumatra, Borobudur and Prambanan Temples. Besides UNESCO, the speakers came from the relevant departments of Ministry of Education & Culture, Gadjah Mada University, The National Disaster Management Agency and Indonesian’s Center for Research and Technological Development of Geological Disaster. The workshop was presented in a combination of a lecture, interactive practical exercise and group discussions.
In the last day of the workshop, the disaster response simulation for Borobudur temple was conducted in the Borobudur compounds. Taking the earthquake disaster scenario, the simulation gathered 272 participants including all staff of the Borobudur Conservation Office, representatives from National and Regional Disaster Management Agencies, Police, Red Cross, Local Government of Borobudur, community from Borobudur sub-district and the rest of the workshop participants. The simulation was conducted by dividing all participants into specific designated tasks based on the Emergency Response Scenario developed and discussed during the workshop. The tourists of the Borobudur on that day were also briefed about the simulation and some of them participated in the simulation. The simulation went very well and provided more practical knowledge to all participants involved on how to respond in case of earthquake disaster in Borobudur temple. The evaluation session was conducted in the end of the simulation and lead by KRT Adikoesoemo, the Advisor from National Disaster Management Agency.

The official closing ceremony for the event took place at the Borobudur Conservation Office, where Dr.  Marsis Sutopo, the Director of Borobudur Conservation Office, stated that the workshop and simulation are part of the efforts to build human resources capacity in terms of disaster mitigation, especially for the cultural heritage experts. Dr. Sutopo encouraged the participants to continue the good efforts by starting prepare their own cultural-heritage-based-disaster-preparedness plan at their relevant site so that the appropriate plans for response and preparedness in case of disaster are in place.

Managing Disaster Risks for World Heritage: