Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

Why is the inventory of intangible heritage done?

The binding articles in the UNESCO Convention, Paris2003, include the inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage (ICH) at the national level. This means that countries that have ratified the Convention must identify and define the various elements of ICH present in their territory in cooperation with communities, groups, and in some cases individuals.

The inventory process in Albania identifies the intangible cultural heritage in the country, making it more visible to the public, recognizes its value as a source of cultural diversity, sustainable development, the expression of human creativity, a tool for promoting cultural exchange and understanding of mutual between people and for their approach to each other. The Albanian ICH Registry is managed by the Ministry of Culture, which is also the administrator of this platform.

This register provides communities with a platform through which they can highlight their heritage, ranging from smaller local phenomena to large-scale national elements.

The register already has 100 elements from different communities of three regions of the country: Korçë, Shkodër, and Gjirokastër. It is also used to collect good practices, i.e. projects, practices, and methods that have been found to be effective in protecting ICH. As the administrator of this register, the Ministry of Culture has the right to request additions and clarifications to the proposed elements. The Ministry of Culture, through the National Council of Intangible Cultural Heritage, decides which elements will become part of the National Register. Furthermore, elements part of this Register can be proposed to become part of the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. The decision, on which elements will be proposed, is taken by the Minister of Culture, based on the proposal of the National Council of Intangible Cultural Heritage.

According to the rules of the Convention, member states can make no more than one proposal per year. In addition, it is possible to participate in multinational filing cases. Proposals can also be made to become part of the UNESCO Register of Conservation Practices.