ICH Safeguarding in the Pacific: From Analogue to Digital

Meeting participants

On 5 September 2017, ICHCAP-Pacific cooperative workshop on digitizing ICH-related analogue audiovisual materials was held at the International Conference Hall of the National Intangible Heritage Center in Jeonju, Korea. The workshop was held as part of the Digitization Program that ICHCAP has conducted since 2011 for sharing ICH-related information in the Asia-Pacific region. It was attended by eight experts from the Yap State Historic Preservation Office of Micronesia and the Fiji Museum, selected as partner organizations this year, as well as other organizations at home and abroad.

The workshop consisted of exchanges among experts for restoration/digitization of ICH materials, working-level meetings to check project progress and discuss how to use the outcomes, and field trips to archive facilities of ICH and data management organizations.

The workshop was divided into two sessions. The first session provided the opportunity to share the current status of ICH management in the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) and Fiji. There were presentations on the introduction of ICH and relevant organizations in each country, as well as the ICH-related audiovisual materials owned by the two organizations and their digitization plans.

The second session included presentations by domestic experts on Korea’s digitization and archiving of audiovisual materials and panel discussion. It started with the introduction of ICHCAP and its Digitization Program. Then, experts from the National Archives of Korea (NAK), Korean Film Archive (KOFA), and National Research Institute of Cultural Heritage made presentations on how materials are digitized and archives are managed in their respective organizations. They also had a Q&A session to share their experience and know-how with other participants.

Participants from overseas joined the working-level meetings on 6 September 2017 and took field trips to domestic expert organizations, including KOFA, Korea Educational Broadcasting System, National Folk Museum of Korea, and NAK on 7 and 8 September. They had an opportunity to learn about data preservation and archiving, strengthen their expert network, and seek measures to promote cooperation. After the workshop, the partner organizations from FSM and Fiji will embark on their projects to digitize analogue audiovisual materials, the results of which will be used to build digital databases as well as CD/DVD selection sets.

ICHCAP’s Digitization Program aims to support Member States in the Asia-Pacific region to digitize, manage, and promote old and/or damaged ICH-related analogue audiovisual materials. Generally, this effort is part of a larger objective of sharing information and using relevant acquired materials for ICH transmission. Through the workshop, ICHCAP hopes to help the selected organizations make a greater success in their projects.

Meanwhile, the Yap State Historic Preservation Office has recorded and preserved Micronesian history and cultural heritage since the 1970s. It has had many difficulties, including exposure of analogue materials to constant natural disasters. The Digitization Program is expected to help overcome such difficulties. The Fiji Museum, which has safeguarded and promoted various culture and heritage of Pacific islands since 1904, plans to restore old oral history archives of the natives of iTaukei, Solomon, and Vanuatu to use such information more widely