MOWCAP MOVES ON: BANGKOK BECKONS BUREAU Preparations for Memory, an exciting new coffee table book on Asia Pacific documentary heritage, final planning for an imminent regional workshop in Seoul, and the launch of Thailand’s national Memory of the World register - just some of the items on the crowded agenda of the 9th Bureau meeting of the MOWCAP (UNESCO “Memory of the World” Committee for Asia Pacific), held in Bangkok, Thailand from 1 to 4 February.. The meeting was generously hosted by the Thai national MOW Committee, with the support of the Ministries of Culture and Education, and held at the National Archives of Thailand. In addition to its own agenda, the Bureau also held a joint meeting with Thai MOW Committee, a very active body chaired by Professor Khunying Maenmas Chavalit. Young people figured conspicuously in the proceedings. UNESCO volunteers for peace, Tu Alfonso and Taweef Kashooo, presented their views on the links between peace and
the preservation of documentary heritage. Preservation issues relating to Thai heritage already inscribed on the international and Asia Pacific MOW registers were considered when the Bureau inspected the King Ram Khamhaeng Inscription in the National Museum, and the Epigraphic Archives at the Wat Pho monastery. Reports on MoW activities from across the region were reviewed. The recent creation of a new National MoW Committee in Fiji – the first in the Pacific - was welcomed. Measures for fundraising and upgrading the MOWCAP website were agreed, as was the concept of developing the extended Bureau as a general information resource. MOWCAP’s mandate (from the 2008 International MOW Conference) to develop ideas for complementation between UNESCO’s MOW, World Heritage and Intangible Heritage programs were taken a step further with major discussion papers. [Media release 5 February 2009, UNESCO Memory of the World Program Asia/ Pacific Regional committee]
The MOWCAP Bureau manages the work of the Asia Pacific Committee between the biennial general meetings of MOWCAP. It most recently met in Canberra in February 2008, and will next convene in Macau in March 2010. The extended Bureau comprises Chair, Ray Edmondson; Vice-chair, Carmen Padilla; SecretaryGeneral, Helen Swinnerton, UNESCO Regional Advisor for CI, Dr Susanne Ornager, Subcommittee chairs Dr Rujaya Abhakorn and Professor Eun-su Cho, Memory editor Nick Deocampo, Special advisers Sarah Choy, Simon Chu, Richard Engelhardt, Akira Genba, and Jinsung Jeon.
A Message from CCAAA Convenor Kurt Deggeller Dear SEAPAVAA friends, At this year’s annual meeting of the eight NGOs which constitute the CCAAA, there were two central topics: the inner cohesion of our group of NGOs and how it as a group networks with those other organisations, which represent our concerns at a higher level. These two topics are closely related: Because only if the participants of a loose network such as the CCAAA, perceive potential benefits, will they identify with it and be willing to make a financial contribution to it. Such potential benefits can be the gained when the individual member organizations working on their own cannot achieve their goals, but when acting in unison with other organizations can have more of an impact. This is the case with important issues such as the question of exceptions and limitations to copyright for archives and libraries, the protection of collections in times of armed conflict or after natural disasters, and the promotion of general access to knowledge and information. The larger NGOs which represent archives, libraries, museums and “monuments and sites” – ICA, IFLA, ICOM and ICOMOS – have begun to look for areas to work together regarding common concerns and the CCAAA was asked to join them. If we act together, we can have a more effective standing with organizations such as WIPO and UNESCO. And within the framework of the International Committee of the Blue Shield we can do more to protect and safeguard our collections. This form of cooperation also makes sense as archives, libraries and museums today hold many valuable audiovisual collections although they are not specialists in the field of preserving and making accessible their film and sound collections. The CCAAA can make an important contribution in advising them and offering support for training measures which will promote the protection and accessibility of these documents. This is another reason why the CCAAA also has to strive to make the UNESCO World Day for Audiovisual Heritage better known. SEAPAVAA had already made many significant contributions to the World Day in the past, for which we congratulate you. We do hope you will remain loyal to us in promoting the World Day again this year. I extend to SEAPAVAA my best wishes for a very successful Conference in Indonesia.
Kurt Deggeller Convenor CCAAA
SEAPAVAA UPDATE MAY 2009 Page 3