UNESCO Heritage Sites in Iran
Jame' ('Atiq) Mosque of Esfahan, proposed Heritage Site
Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live with today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage is both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration. Places as unique and diverse as the wilds of East Africa’s Serengeti, the Pyramids of Egypt, the Great Barrier Reef in Australia and the Baroque cathedrals of Latin America make up our world’s heritage.
What makes the concept of World Heritage exceptional is its universal application. World Heritage sites belong to all the peoples of the world, irrespective of the territory on which they are located. Currently Iran has ten official heritage sites and over fifty more sites on a tentative list for review.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) seeks to encourage the identification, protection and preservation of cultural and natural heritage around the world considered to be of outstanding value to humanity. This is embodied in an international treaty called the Convention concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage, adopted by UNESCO in 1972.
UNESCO's World Heritage mission is to:
- encourage countries to sign the World Heritage Convention and to ensure the protection of their natural and cultural heritage;
- encourage States Parties to the Convention to nominate sites within their national territory for inclusion on the World Heritage List;
- encourage States Parties to establish management plans and set up reporting systems on the state of conservation of their World Heritage sites;
- help States Parties safeguard World Heritage properties by providing technical assistance and professional training;
- provide emergency assistance for World Heritage sites in immediate danger;
- support States Parties' public awareness-building activities for World Heritage conservation;
- encourage participation of the local population in the preservation of their cultural and natural heritage;
- encourage international cooperation in the conservation of our world's cultural and natural heritage.
Ideas of Working with Official and Proposed Iran Heritage Sites
- Geographically locate each site in Iran.
- Consider the cultural and historical significance of the site to Iran and to the world’s community.
- Create an historical time line of Iranian history incorporating heritage sites.
- Link sites to architecture, art, religion and utilitarian use.
- Explore proposed potential UNESCO Heritage sites in Iran and justify their addition to the official list.
- Locate heritage sites in other areas of the world, particularly the area in which you live.
- Support the efforts of the Heritage site program, globally and locally.