29 November, 2018
Within the framework of the European Year of Cultural Heritage, Incatema has attended the International Meeting on Cultural Heritage and Development, where experts from across the world analyse the role of culture and cultural heritage as a fundamental right and decisive factor in achieving inclusive, participatory and peaceful societies. Under the slogan Culture is development, intellectuals, architects, historians, political representatives, members of UNESCO and project managers involved in the preservation of historical assets led the debate on the role that cultural heritage plays in development. The participants discussed issues such as urbanism and sustainability, measures to preserve and protect heritage in cases of armed conflict and the contribution of cultural heritage, and also the relationship between culture, economic growth and social innovation. During the presentation and inauguration of the Meeting, Josep Borrel, Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, highlighted the role that cultural heritage assumes as a driver of dialogue between peoples. According to the Minister, “The recognition of one another’s values promotes cooperation and helps us create more plural and inclusive societies”. Meanwhile, Doctor Eusebio Leal, the Havana City Historian, stressed the importance of educating society on cultural values: “The hand executes what the heart orders” he has stated in the past, alluding to the need to continue with tasks of conservation whilst also constructing new heritage. Similarly noteworthy were the concerns raised by the architect David Chipperfield with regard to the challenge of finding a necessary balance between conservation and development. In the same vein and in the words of Javier Bardón, Director of Architecture at Incatema Consulting & Engineering, “The conservation of cultural heritage, far from representing, uniquely, a task of recovering the past, should take on key relevance in the construction of the present and the design of the future”. The International Meeting on Cultural Heritage and Development forms part of the activities scheduled for November on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of the creation of the Spanish Agency for International Cooperation and Development (AECID), and represents the contribution of Spanish Cooperation to the initiatives planned for 2018 to commemorate the European Year of Cultural Heritage. The event took place at Casa de América in Madrid on 27th and 28th November 2018.