UNESCO and the UNESCO UNITWIN Network for Underwater Archaeology organize an introductory training course on underwater cultural heritage in Kemer (Turkey).
The course is addressed to the African region and will focus on basic principles and techniques to understand, study, record and manage the underwater cultural heritage. Logistical organisation lies with the Selçuk University (Turkey), coordinator of the network.
The course is given in English language. The designated participants should preferably be archaeologists, cultural heritage experts, historians or curators working within governmental and cultural heritage institutions. Participants should be presented by their permanent delegations to UNESCO and will be admitted in function of specific requirements. The exact course level will be adapted in function of the level of the registered participants. As places are limited to 15 persons, priority will be given to the States Parties to the UNESCO 2001 Convention. Equally, the principles of geographical distribution and gender balance will be taken into consideration. The deadline for submitting applications is 1 April 2015.
The UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage (2001) ensures the comprehensive protection of underwater cultural heritage through clear legal and operational rules, and sets a scientific work methodology in its Annex. In the course of the First UNESCO Africa Regional Meeting, which took place in Yenagoa (Nigeria) in November 2013, the different countries’ representatives acknowledged the need for reinforcement of capacities throughout the region in order to protect adequately their archaeological sites found, totally or partially, under water. Capacity building is, therefore, required - together with the implementation of an appropriate legal framework- concerning exploration, excavation, conservation and restoration of underwater cultural heritage.
UNESCO has created the UNESCO UNITWIN Network for Underwater Archaeology to join elite universities teaching underwater archaeology. One of the main aims of the network is to organize regional and international capacity-building programmes, scientific conferences and seminars to make advances in the field of underwater archaeology as well as to promote its development among Member States without national academic programmes.