We are delighted to announce that UNESCO headquarters in Paris approved the establishment of a new UNESCO Chair of interpretation and education for enhancing integrated heritage approaches, at the University of Primorska Faculty of Humanities, which fills the gap of existing UNESCO chairs in the world, recognizing the key to sustainable heritage management in interpretation and education through integrative heritage approaches. In fact, expert trends indicate the need to integrate the management of cultural and natural heritage. Therefore, the main guideline shall include participatory and "value-based" approaches, which can achieve integrative and sustainable management of both natural and cultural heritage through community involvement. The activities of the new Chair will be based on the internationally renowned International Summer School of Museology and other educational and research activities of UP FHŠ intertwined with the activities of Škocjan Caves Park, which is on the UNESCO's list of natural and cultural World Heritage Sites since 1986.
From the side of professional sciences, the Chair covers heritage studies, anthropology and cultural studies, archeology, geography, history, intercultural studies, management, and biology. The main goal of the chair is to develop interpretation and education for professionals and the general public within an integrative heritage approach. The UNESCO Chair is complemented by the goals and research activities of the UP FHŠ internal program group on the topic of heritage.
Head of the Chair is the dean of UP FHŠ, Prof. Irena Lazar, the preparatory work for the establishment of the Chair was done also by Assist. Prof. Neža Čebron Lipovec, Assoc. Prof. Katja Hrobat Virloget, Assist. dr. Zrinka Mileusnić and Assoc. Prof. Alenka Tomaž (from the Department of Archeology and Heritage and the Department of Anthropology and Cultural Studies), in collaboration with Vanja Debevec. The establishment of the Chair was supported by 30 national and international institutions from around the world, universities, existing UNESCO chairs and professional associations.