Call Us: US - +1 845 478 5244 | UK - +44 20 7193 7850 | AUS - +61 2 8005 4826

Market size and potential growth

Why is it important to coordinate cultural heritage first aid with the overall emergency response? During an emergency, priorities for relief and recovery are identified through pre-organized national or international emergency management systems. Based on the priorities identified, aid is then channelled through these systems. To ensure safety and security, access to the affected area is strictly controlled. In order to gain access to the affected area and ensure that cultural heritage is considered a priority, it is important to coordinate cultural heritage efforts within the overall emergency response. Failure to do so may increase the risk of the affected heritage being damaged or destroyed. Stamping of heritage structures in Jacmel, Haiti, 2010. Photo: Aparna Tandon, ICCROM. Introducing cultural heritage first aid 19 Stamped heritage building in Jacmel, Haiti, 2010. Photo: Aparna Tandon, ICCROM. This exercise was carried out in parallel with structural evaluations conducted by the Ministry of Public Works and supporting UN agencies. Full coordination was not possible, mainly because the recovery or protection of cultural heritage was not included in either the national or international emergency response. As a result, many historic structures were declared unsafe and were eventually demolished. See references on page 153. 20 First Aid to Cultural Heritage in Times of Crisis | 1. Handbook When is it appropriate to provide cultural heritage first aid? During an emergency, the first priority is to save lives and ensure security. Once such operations are complete, cultural heritage first aid can be activated. Nonetheless, on-the-ground coordination mechanisms with various emergency and humanitarian actors must be set up prior to an emergency and should be given due consideration in the emergency preparedness plans of local governments and cultural heritage institutions. In practice, the right time for initiating first aid varies and depends on the following factors: • The nature and scale of emergency: in the case of a major or complex emergency, involving extensive damage and loss of life, first aid operations might be delayed. • Access to affected areas: in the event of an armed conflict or nuclear incident, access to the affected area will be severely limited, which may, in turn, delay the activation of first aid. • The scale of damage caused to cultural heritage and/or its significance for stakeholders (e.g. its local, national, international significance): where damage is extensive, the need for outside assistance could delay operations. Similarly, for highly significant cultural heritage, such as a World Heritage site, external experts may be required to carry out inspections before any action can be taken. • Local capacity and preparedness: where there is local capacity in terms of trained personnel and resources, and coordination mechanisms with emergency management institutions are also in place, it is easier to initiate cultural heritage first aid immediately following the life-saving operations.