ASEAN VMAST Workshop: Introducing UNESCO's Visitor Management, Assessment & Strategy Tool for ASEAN World Heritage Sites
UNESCO, in collaboration with Thailand’s Designated Areas for Sustainable Tourism Administration (DASTA) and Thammasat University, will organize an ASEAN-level VMAST Workshop: Introducing the UNESCO's Visitor Management, Assessment & Strategy Tool (VMAST) for ASEAN World Heritage Sites, from 14 February through 18 March 2022. This online workshop is an activity under the project “Promoting Sustainable Tourism in ASEAN World Heritage sites with Visitor Management Assessment”, funded by the ASEAN Secretariat through the Ministry of Tourism and Sports, Thailand.
The workshop is divided into three sessions:
Session 1: 14-15 February 2022
A two-day workshop to introduce UNESCO’s VMAST tool to representatives from World Heritage Sites in ASEAN.
Session 2: 16 February and 16 March 2022
A one-month site assessment exercise on using VMAST to assess World Heritage Sites, wherein the country representatives work together in applying the VMAST tool to their selected World Heritage Site(s) and produce short assessment report(s) from VMAST web-based programme.
Session 3: 17-18 March 2022
A two-day seminar to present the assessment results and discuss strategies forward.
The workshop aims to equip all ASEAN countries with the knowledge about UNESCO’s new tool in assessing the conservation and tourism management at World Heritage Sites. This UNESCO Visitor Management Assessment and Strategy Tool will become an integral part in future periodic reporting of current World Heritage properties in all countries, as well as in considering management plans of new nominations of sites to the World Heritage List. The workshop will benefit the protection of World Heritage Sites in ASEAN countries, so that they can fulfil the commitment made as Parties to the UNESCO 1972 Convention for the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage.
The VMAST is useful for site managers and authorities in establishing baselines for visitor and site management. It can generate insight into the current status of the site management against sustainability indicators specific to World Heritage, and what can be done through ongoing management activities to protect heritage values while localising the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The key outputs from this workshop are VMAST assessment reports for up to 18 World Heritage Sites in ASEAN countries, which will be showcased at the seminar on 17-18 March 2022.