The UNESCO World Heritage Center, in partnership with the International Institute for Central Asian Studies (IICAS), the National Commission of the Republic of Kazakhstan for UNESCO, the Ministry of Culture and Information of the Republic of Kazakhstan, and the NGO "QazaqGeography", conducted a Practical Seminar of the UNESCO Japan FiT Silk Roads (Phase III) Project in Aktau, Kazakhstan, from September 5 to 8, 2023.
This seminar saw the participation of national coordinators and experts from the working group dedicated to the Serial Transnational nomination “Silk Road Volga-Caspian corridor”. This group represents Kazakhstan, Azerbaijan, the Republic of Tatarstan of the Russian Federation, Turkmenistan, Iran, Japan, the UK, IICAS, and UNESCO.
The seminar provided insights into the various facets and phases of modern documentation practices for historical and cultural heritage sites. Cutting-edge geodetic equipment, including UAVs, was employed during both the fieldwork and the post-processing stages.
Experts had the opportunity to learn from and leverage the vast experience in international-level documentation shared by leading specialists from institutions such as UNESCO, UCL, Teikyo University, and IICAS.
The field trip, excellently organized by "QazaqGeography" LLC, left an indelible impression of the unique monuments of natural and cultural heritage in the Mangystau region.
In the aftermath of the seminar, a resolution was passed. This resolution underscored the necessity of undertaking tasks like inventorying, comparative analysis, identifying the potential for Outstanding Universal Value, and collecting documentation for historical and cultural heritage sites within the Caspian region. These sites form an integral part of the Serial Transnational Nomination "Silk Roads: Volga-Caspian Corridor". The resolution also extended a warm welcome to the idea of organizing subsequent expert meetings. These meetings are envisioned as platforms for sharing experiences, transferring knowledge, enhancing the capacity of experts, and amplifying joint research endeavors.