Messages from Youth for Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage

AD Banner for 2021 Intangible Cultural Heritage Youth Summit © ICHCAP

On Thursday, September 30, ‘2021 Intangible Cultural Heritage Youth Summit’ was held in parallel to the 2021 World Forum for Intangible Cultural Heritage hosted by the National Intangible Heritage Center and organized by the International Information & Networking Centre for Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific Region under the auspices of UNESCO (hereafter ICHCAP). Over 40 youth participants who are taking lead in the safeguarding and transmission of ICH from 15 countries, including the Asia-Pacific region, gathered in the virtual world of Metaverse. This meeting was organized to share various cases of young professionals from each country under the theme of “Intangible Cultural Heritage, Safeguarding and Cooperation by Youth” and aims to establish the foundation for building a youth-led ICH cooperation network and accordingly launch ‘ICH Youth Forum’ in the future.

Participants Gathered at the 2021 Intangible Cultural Heritage Youth Summit in Metaverse Space for Discussion © ICHCAP

The meeting was opened with a keynote presentation by Dr. Duong Bich Hanh, a chief of Culture Unit at UNESCO Bangkok Office, under the theme of “Significance of Youth’s Role and Engagement in Safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage”. Subsequently, nine youth speakers from six countries (Bangladesh, China, India, Korea, Lao PDR, and Nepal) have given presentations from different perspectives of youth practitioners, researchers, and professionals.They shared various activities or efforts to safeguard Intangible Cultural Heritage and examine what needs to be done to maintain and boost ICH transmission in their perspective. Some will suggest active youth engagement in the ICH field to build and develop cooperation between youths.

A free discussion was proceeded under the theme of “Youth of the World Speak Up: ICH, Youth and Cooperation” to build a cooperative system among young people. The vision, direction, and specific activities of the Youth Forum drawn by youths were actively discussed. The participants agreed with the need for continuous cooperation and discussion of young people, and based on this, the declaration was adopted and the event was concluded by reaffirming its commitment to the youth networks in the Asia-Pacific region.

One of the participants commented that “I was stimulated by the enthusiasm of the youths in safeguarding Intangible Cultural Heritage. If we do not act as a youth today, tomorrow never comes. It’s very important to keep on providing a venue such as this event so that we can actually share the culture with more plenty of people and discuss matters relevant to ICH.”

The contents of the summit were summarized and shared on the 3rd day of the 2021 World Forum for Intangible Cultural Heritage on Friday, October 1. In the special session, the four representative Summit participants shared the outcomes of the Youth Summit which can be checked through the following link ( Apart from that, the summit’s recorded video will be uploaded later through ICHCAP’s YouTube channel.

For further information on <2021 Intangible Cultural Heritage Youth Summit>, please contact the sectariat of the 2021 ICH Youth summit (email:, T: +82-63-230-9747).