By Oleh Rybchynskyy
Ukraine’s cultural heritage includes a broad variety of noteworthy town-planning, architectural, archaeological, historical, scientific and engineering sights. The issues related to their preservation, conservation, restoration and development postulate the need for drafting such scientifically based programmes which would promote expansion and detailed elaboration of the monument conservation legislation in the direction of cultural heritage preservation; upgrading the research and design documentation standards; addressing the social challenges; and raising the urban investment or economic development levels.
Ukraine witnesses an improper and consumerist attitude to its cultural heritage, whereas lack of a programme focused on monument research and development fosters distortion and fragmentation of the urban historical and cultural landscape.
The research topic relevance is determined by the following provisions:
- Formation of a far-sighted future cultural heritage in Ukraine necessitates setting up such an action plan which would provide for its well-weighted, consistent and harmonious development.
- Under the conditions when demands mount for revival of the cultural heritage as a reflection of the societal material wealth and spiritual life, it is vital not to disrupt its traditional nature. Conservation and revival of the material and non-material legacy should be based on the principles of restoration, reconstruction, modernisation, regeneration and revalorisation. That being said, this moment in time dictates the need for developing some innovative options to revive the cultural patrimony.
- The contemporary ways of developing the Ukrainian humanities sphere necessitates simultaneous addressing the social and economic challenges and cultural heritage preservation. To achieve the objective, proper methodologies have to be selected and theoretical culture revival models developed. Today Ukraine is on the verge of some global processes related to addressing its social and educational issues, national identity formation or cutting-edge technology integration; therefore, at the times of pro-active changes and reforming the issue of cultural heritage conservation is an extremely momentous one, as it provides a fundamental resource and a frame of reference for the renewal processes.
Analysis into Recent Research and Publications
The issues of monument preservation and research in Ukraine have been looked into by Gorbik, V.A. (Горбик В.А.), Denisenko, G.G. (Денисенко Г.Г.), Skripnik, P.I. (Скрипник П.И.), Opalko, Y.V. (Опалько Ю.В.), Andres, G.A. (Андрес Г.А.) and Chervinsky, A.I. (Червинский А. И.). The experience of cultural patrimony preservation in the United Kingdom, USA and Canada has been analysed by Katargina, T.I. (Катаргина Т.И.) The legal aspects relevant to cultural heritage conservation have been covered in the work by Kurilo, T.V. (Курило Т.В.) entitled Legal Protection of Ukraine’s Cultural Heritage (Правовая охрана культурного наследия Украины). The legal framework related to the issues of monument preservation in Ukraine has been reviewed by Malysheva, A.V. (Малышева А.В.).
The above works focus on some individual aspects and the entire agenda of cultural legacy conservation; however, an analysis into the monument protection activities and an action plan geared to cultural heritage revival has been left unheeded or failed to become a subject for a separate assessment.
Major Instruments on Cultural Heritage Conservation
Ukraine has ratified the below international instruments:
- European Cultural Convention of 19.12.1954;
- Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property of 14.11.1970;
- Convention Concerning the Protection of World Cultural and Natural Heritage of 16.11.1972;
- Convention for the Protection of the Architectural Heritage of Europe of 03.10.1985;
- European Convention on the Protection of the Archaeological Heritage (reviewed) of 16.01.1992;
- European Landscape Convention of 20.10.2000;
- Riga Charter on Authenticity and Historical Reconstruction in Relation to Cultural Heritage of 24.10.2000;
- Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage of 02.11.2001;
- In 2008 Ukraine joined the UNESCO Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (Law of Ukraine of 06.03.2008 No. 132 On Ukraine’ Accession to the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage)
- UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions adopted by the 33rd General UNESCO Conference (2005) in Paris and effective since 2007.
Ukrainian Legal Framework and Regulatory Enforcement
- The Ukrainian 1996 Constitution has entrenched the shared obligation on behalf of the state, local authorities, individuals and legal entities to observe strictly the legal environment pertaining to identification, use, research and promotion of the cultural and natural heritage. Chapter One of the Ukrainian Constitution and, specifically, its Articles 11 and 12 say: (а) the Ukrainian state shall assist in consolidation and development of the Ukrainian nation, its historical conscience, traditions and culture, as well as in the development of the ethnic, cultural, linguistic and religious distinctiveness of all the indigenous peoples and ethnic minorities of Ukraine; and (b) Ukraine shall take care of meeting the ethnic, cultural and linguistic needs of the Ukrainians who reside beyond its state borders. Part Two of Article 66 asserts: “Everyone shall be obliged to refrain from harming the nature or cultural heritage and to compensate any losses caused by her or him.”
- The Law of Ukraine On Cultural Heritage Protection regulates the legal, organisational, social and economic relations within the cultural heritage conservation sphere aimed at its preservation, cultural legacy object use in social life and protection of the traditional environmental nature in the interests of the present and future generations.
- The Law of Ukraine On Archaeological Heritage Protection regulates the relations linked to the Ukrainian archaeological patrimony conservation, the patrimony in question being seen as an inalienable part of the human cultural heritage and vulnerable and non-renewable source of knowledge on historical past, as well as specifies the rights and obligations of the architectural legacy researchers.
- The Law of Ukraine On Exports, Imports and Restitution of Cultural Valuables sets the monitoring procedures and the general procedures related to cultural valuable transportation beyond the Ukrainian state borders, as well as contains the list of what represents cultural valuables under the Ukrainian laws in effect and is subject to government protection.
- The Law of Ukraine On Architectural Activities sets the legal and organisational foundations for engaging in the architectural activities and aims at formation of a favourable living environment and achievement of the aesthetic expression and economic expedience and reliability of the buildings, structures and compounds thereof.
- The Law of Ukraine On Territorial Planning and Development sets the legal and organisational foundations for planning, development and other kinds of use of territories and aims at ensuring a sustainable community development, while taking into account the public and private interests.
- The Law of Ukraine On List of Cultural Heritage Monuments Which Are Not Subject to Privatisation specifies that a monument may only be privatised provided its would-be owner enters with the relevant cultural heritage conservation authority into a preliminary contract on making a future contract on (part of) the monument protection containing its substantial terms and conditions, including the purpose-oriented use and the operations the would-be owner commits himself to conduct in respect of the monument in order to maintain it in an appropriate condition.
- The Law of Ukraine On Culture specifies the legal foundations of any activities in the cultural sphere and regulates the public relations pertaining to the creation, use, propagation and conservation of cultural heritage and cultural valuables and is directed towards ensuring access to these.
The criteria relevant to monument identification are entrenched in Resolution by the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers of 27 December 2001 No. 1760 On Approval of the Procedure Relevant to Monument Category Identification for Entering Any Cultural Heritage Assets on the State Register of Immovable Monuments in Ukraine.
The following criteria have been formulated for the national significance monuments:
- national significance monuments represent historical or cultural valuables and should meet the criterion of authenticity, as well as at least one of the following criteria:
- have made a substantial effect on development of culture, architecture, urban planning or arts in the country;
- directly linked to historical events or beliefs and life or activities of prominent personalities;
- represent a masterpiece of a creative genius; and have become remarkable milestone works by prominent urban planners, architects or other artists; and
- represent works of an extinct civilisation or artistic style.
- The local significance monuments should meet the following criteria:
- influence on the development of culture, architecture, urban planning or arts in a certain community or region;
- linkage to historical events or beliefs and life or activities of prominent personalities in a certain community or region;
- represent works by renowned urban planners, architects or other artists; and
- represent cultural heritage of an ethnic minority or regional ethnic group.
In summary, the Ukrainian legal framework in the area of cultural legacy conservation has been harmonised with the international practices in the sphere.
Analysis into Foreign Experience in the Sphere of Cultural Heritage Conservation
The world practice of cultural legacy protection has accumulated a vast wealth of insights into the public initiatives and their opportunities. The most valuable one is the practice related to searching and recording the bibliographic, historical and ethnographic materials, historical and cultural monuments, works of art, relics and ethnic period pieces, public event organisation (festivals, concerts or exhibitions) and focusing on issues of the national language or traditions, languages or traditions of the ethnic minorities, urban planning and architecture monuments and historical or cultural landscape of cities, towns and villages.
The United Kingdom has accumulated a positive experience of public-private partnerships. Year 1992 saw the rise of the Private Finance Initiative, a new concept of state-owned property management. Long-term service provision contracts are awarded to private sector representatives, one of their material terms and conditions being their investment commitments.
Valentina Kholodok, who did research into foreign experience of fiduciary management over the historical, cultural and natural heritage sites, argues that in the United Kingdom, apart from its government, also the church, monarchy, a national trust, groups of “friends”, as well as individuals are engaged in historical and cultural patrimony conservation. Among multiple vital and currently central forms of national legacy protection, a special place is attributed to fiduciary management.
The experience pertinent to cultural heritage socialisation is covered in the research carried out by Olga Nadyrova. She, notably, asserts that “France has developed the notion of ‘cultural heritage pedagogics’ as an interdisciplinary vector which combines pedagogics, psychology, ethics, law, history, marketing and other branches.” The notion of cultural heritage pedagogics raises awareness of the local community in respect of the patrimony resources and is integrated via training and education lessons, workshops and seminars or by visiting museums, historical sights and the like. Olga Nadyrova points out that the French civil society organisations mainly engage with schoolchildren and students and organise educational events which are usually interactive and combine theory with in situ research and some practical actions, such as visiting museums or historical sites; master classes focusing on traditional national crafts or copying renowned sculptural or architectural works; cultural heritage animation; seminars, training sessions and meetings with practicians or prominent personalities; and voluntary work aimed at conducting some unsophisticated restoration operations or archaeological excavations. In summary, conservation and harmonious development of the historical and cultural monuments is conditional in France on its status of high education level, wide range of information sources and promotion events using scientific and popular literature and use of the scientific potential of its experts in various branches of science.
In her thesis research Olga Nadyrova states that “a striking instance of local cooperation among the UNESCO, ICOMOS, ICCROM and the city council is provided by the project related to Nancy in the east of France. Nancy has been recognized as a historical city with its 240 historical or architectural monuments. The stunning thing about the project is the fact that, beside the major operations related to repairs or restoration work conducted in the city’s historical centre part as a result of cooperation with the city council, a tourist tram line has been built to interconnect all the city masterpieces. While visiting the restoration sites, the ICOMOS arranged several symposia and attracted the attention of many scholars, as well as philanthropists or donors. Outreach and entertainment events for the local public were successfully staged to attract it to volunteer work at the sites.”
Olga Nadyrova formulates a crucial conclusion that France’s centuries-long experience in formation of an efficient monument protection system could be in part used also in the Ukrainian realities. Notably, she suggests that:
- the Ukrainian laws in effect should be improved (singling-out a provision on each one of the individual cultural heritage types and accumulating in one legislative instrument all the legislative foundations related to taxation, management terms and conditions, criminal and administrative accountability cases and relationship regulations with private owners of any cultural heritage monuments);
- some engagement methods of the civil society entities (arranging cultural heritage days in collaboration with the state authorities and educational institutions) should be adopted; and
- the outreach activities targeting both the local public and tourists should be improved.
Works by foreign researchers on cultural legacy conservation put in their focus mainly the issues related to the development of the modern world and classical restoration philosophy. For example, Prof. Bogusław Szmygin (Poland), while looking into the contemporary conditions and opportunities faced by a restorer, argues that quite often an investor’s demands require from a restorer some serious concessions and deviations from the classical restoration basis, which might well lead to the monument’s physical destruction. Consequently, as the monuments are adapted to the modern needs, a threat arises that the facility authenticity will be gone.
The legacy conservation peculiarities are likewise affected by the regional engineering and financial factors, restoration attitude philosophy, local traditions and religion. The issue has been emphatically stressed by Prof. Andrzej Tomaszewski (Poland), who believes that an integrated restoration development provides a path to addressing the heritage preservation challenge in the modern world. According to AA. Tomaszewski, “integrated revalorisation of an ensemble or historical town provides a serious and complicated problem. Integration of four collaborating parties’ resources and competences must be put in place, and only they put together are able of achieving a positive outcome. These are representatives of monument restorers; urban planners, environment designers and utility designers; researchers of historical, technical, societal and economic structures; and urban communities and the authorities.”
The methodological aspects pertaining to the cultural heritage revalorisation in historical towns and cities have been elaborated by Prof. Edmund Małachowicz (Poland). Notably, in his work Konserwacja i rewaloryzacja architektury w zespołach i krajobrazie (Architectural Conservation and Revalorisation in Ensembles and Landscapes) he specifies the following revalorisation activity vectors: elimination of menace and destruction sources, improvement of the urban structures’ technical condition, upgrading the living standards and conditions and improvement of an ensemble’s aesthetic quality.
The restoration practices available in the modern world will be successful, if they rely on the public opinion formed. The fact is accentuated by restorer Cezary Głuszek (Poland), who did research into the conservation strategy and public activities around the Rabsztyn castle ruins’ revalorisation: “Everybody is engaged in the idea of the Rabsztyn castle revalorisation and deeply convinced that it has a special significance for the local community. The people believe that arranging tournaments, competitions, contests and other forms of recreation and rest will also have an economic effect and try to convince the Olkusz County residents that the Rabsztyn castle is an economic asset for the entire region, as well as a cultural one. They all share the responsibility towards its salvation and preservation in the best possible condition for the sake of future generations.”
The contemporary world is pro-actively shifting its attitudes, intentions and objectives relevant to patrimony preservation. Ever more attention is being drawn to the issues of cultural landscape preservation, new construction conducted in the protected area and around the monument, use of computer-aided technologies in monument research and restoration and active use of the architectural legacy for socio-cultural purposes. Therefore, it is vital for Ukraine to go beyond developing the programmes for cultural heritage conservation and implement them, while taking into account the needs of the local authorities, local communities and the private sector, and be more pro-active in engaging the educational institutions.
Insights into the Activities Pursued by the Ukrainian Monument Protection Institutions
With the goal in mind of efficiently streamlining the system for cultural monument management, registration and funding, Ukraine set up in 2002 its State Service for Cultural Heritage Protection, which had for a long time been incorporated in and reported to the Ministry of Culture. As per Edict by President of Ukraine of 15 March 2006 On State Service for the Issues Related to the National Cultural Heritage, it provided a basis for foundation of the State Service for the Issues Related to the National Cultural Heritage. The chief objectives of the State Service for the Issues Related to the National Cultural Heritage were outlined as follows: involvement within its competences in implementation of the government policies in the area of cultural heritage protection and museology; running within its competences the affairs of state governance and providing coordination of the activities pursued by the executive authorities in the said sphere; exercising state monitoring and supervision over how the legislative requirements related to the cultural heritage protection and museology are complied with; performing regulatory, permissive and registration functions in the area of cultural heritage protection and museology; and putting in place provisions for promoting international collaboration in the said sphere.
The cultural heritage protection authorities with the local self-government bodies are entrusted with the following tasks: promoting the monument protection activities on their relevant territories; organising scientific methods-specific, exhibition, exposition and publishing activities; organising research into cultural monument sites; and engaging in organising training, retraining and advanced training of the personnel involved in the cultural heritage protection sphere.
Thus, for instance, the issues pertinent to the historical and cultural legacy protection in today’s Ukraine have been put in focus of Irina Komarnitskaya’s dissertation paper Protection and Preservation of the Historical and Cultural Monuments in Ukraine in 1991-2012: Historiography. The author looks into the role performed by individual civil society entities in rehabilitation of ecclesiastical architectural monuments; issues related to building use by the religious confessions; points out that the architectural and town planning sites more often than not become subjects of polemics or public discussions in the press and at meetings of the local authorities; indicates at violations available in course of development documentation issue and monument destruction for the sake of selling the land they are situated on; and focuses on vagueness of the term historical and cultural reserve, reserves’ non-existent right of monument protection authorities both on their territories and in protection areas, outstanding issue of providing taxation preferences and exemptions to the reserves and unsettled relations between the executive authorities, on the one hand, and property management and reserve business, on the other hand.
Improvement of the government regulation frameworks in the sphere of historical and cultural heritage protection is covered in the dissertation paper of Valery Meshcheriakov entitled Government Regulation Mechanisms in the Sphere of Historical and Cultural Heritage and Architectural Monument Protection in the Regions. For example, when analysing the global experience of cultural and architectural monument conservation, V. Meshcheriakov stresses the need for setting up a non-profit national trust organisation in Ukraine. The organisation’s regulations should be entrenched at the legislative level, viz.:
- Creation of a motivation system for donors who donate their financial resources for heritage facility conservation;
- Ban imposed on sharing the profits generated by the trust using a heritage facility among its founders and members;
- Observing the non-alienation principle, i.e. making provisions that a heritage facility should be made available for perpetual use in the interest of public at large;
- Exemption of the trust of property taxes, since the heritage facility is in fiduciary management and is used in the public interest, and the access to it is guaranteed; and
- Assignment of rights to fiduciary management of the heritage facilities.
Valery Meshcheriakov also justifiably states that there is an urgent need for re-thinking attitudes to comprehension and analysis of interaction among the authorities, public and private sector in the sphere of historical and cultural heritage and architectural monument conservation and protection. Therefore, role played by the joint cooperation institutions (Public, Consultative or Expert Methodology Councils) should be reinforced, and their major functions should include a comprehensive promotion of a broad public participation in pasting and implementing the government policies in the cultural domain by active engagement in the processes relevant to elaboration of legislative and other legal regulatory instruments on historical and cultural legacy protection in the regions and appropriate monitoring of their enforcement; promotion of cultural assets at the local and regional levels; arrangement of inspections into how the cultural patrimony objects are stored and restored; putting forward proposals on how to draft and constantly update on the basis of the national protection register a catalogue (state description) of the vital cultural valuables, both state-owned and private, and, perhaps, regulations on exporting any objects crucial for the national cultural legacy and other events.
Following his analysis, Valery Meshcheriakov formulates some major factors which prevent an efficient regulation by the state authorities of the cultural heritage sphere:
- Legal norms quite often are not supported by an implementation mechanism underpinned by by-laws and are too vague for a direct effect;
- Improper monitoring of how the effective laws, regulatory legal acts or decisions made in the monument protection sphere are enforced;
- Low level of awareness and legal competence among the specialists active in the cultural heritage protection area (their lack of knowledge of the laws effective in the sector or their basic contents);
- Lack of distinctive and holistic organisational and managerial vertical flowchart in the sphere or systemic approaches and coordination in the activities pursued by the state and local authorities, when performing urgent operations linked with historical and cultural patrimony protection and conservation;
- Insufficient monitoring on behalf of the authorities of all the levels over violations of the monument protection laws in effect;
- Unsettled conditions and incomplete status of the system aimed at cultural heritage object registration;
- Insufficient identification of the sources for funding events related to protection of the cultural heritage objects of the national and local significance levels;
- Inefficient work by the local authorities on integration of innovative projects related to cultural heritage protection and promotion;
- Lack of conditions in place for introduction of corporate and private charity and philanthropy culture;
- Poor evaluation by members of the public of the authorities’ activities aimed at historical and cultural patrimony protection; and
- Inappropriate level of cooperation between the government and public institutions.
Vladlena Litovchenko’s thesis concentrates on identifying the role played by the UNESCO in the cultural heritage protection and conservation area. The author says that “a promising cooperation vector with the UNESCO in protection and conservation is represented by drafting state ear-marked programmes on cultural legacy preservation at the regional level. These programmes should include issues pertinent to cultural patrimony conservation in this or that region or territory and promote integration of those forms of cultural heritage preservation and mainstreaming which have proved their efficiency in the UNESCO operations. These programmes must have an objective of developing and implementing a variety of research, repair, restoration, nature conservation, informative, financial and economic measures to seek preservation, use and promotion of the cultural heritage objects and creation of new tourist routes and modern travelling infrastructure in the Ukrainian regions. Another promising cooperation vector between Ukraine and the UNESCO in the culture protection sphere is HR training. In this domain our government, with an active support from the UNESCO and other international institutions, has to facilitate specialists’ personnel training and advanced training in the sphere of cultural and natural heritage facility protection by introducing relevant professional courses at the specialised higher educational establishments.”
In summary, an analysis conducted into the activities carried out by the monument protection institutions indicates at the following key problems:
– improper control over the effective law enforcement;
– low awareness and legal competence levels among experts in the cultural heritage protection area; and
– inappropriate cooperation level between the state institutions and civil society organisations.
Insights into the Regional Cultural Heritage Conservation Programmes
Recent years have seen an emerging practice for development and implementation of the regional cultural heritage conservation programmes. What follows below is kind of an executive summary of these programmes.
The state ear-marked programme for cultural heritage preservation and tourist infrastructure development at Glukhiv, Sumy Region, for 2012-2016 was approved under Resolution by the Ukrainian Cabinet of Ministers of 20 July 2011 No. 814. The programme’s major tasks are: – making provisions for preparing design and cost estimate documents for restoration, repairs, adoption, conservation, rehabilitation and museumification of the cultural heritage facilities and beautification of the monument protection zones; – performing operations for restoration, repairs, adoption, conservation, rehabilitation and museumification of the cultural heritage facilities and beautification of the monument protection zones; – reconstruction (construction) of the utility lines and structures affecting the conditions of the cultural heritage facilities; – beautification of the streets and squares in the town’s historical area; – translocation beyond the town’s historical area of the buildings which do not match the traditional nature of its environment; and making provisions for preserving the nature conservation sites and recreation areas.
The 2012-2015 Ternopil District cultural heritage preservation programme was approved under a district council resolution of 15 June 2012 No. 231. For the purpose of programme implementation, the following objective were formulated: – making an inventory of 232 monuments (archaeology, history and monumental arts, architecture and urban planning, garden art and landscapes); – making a comprehensive inventory of how icon-stands, church paintings, sculptures, old prints et al. preserved in three architectural monument churches; – making an inventory of failing monuments of archaeology, history, monumental arts, architecture and urban planning; – making an inventory of three garden arts monuments; – making an electronic database on the district’s cultural heritage facilities, including mapping, geodetic, bibliographic and archive materials, facility photographs (pictorial albums) and topical catalogues; and – preparing electronic certificates for 232 cultural heritage facilities (archaeology, history and monumental arts, architecture and urban planning, garden art and landscapes).
The 2016-2010 Kremenets District cultural heritage preservation programme is specified in Order by the District State Administration Chairperson of 22 January 2016 No. 22. For the purpose of programme implementation, the following objective were formulated: – making an inventory of 345 monuments of archaeology, history, monumental arts, architecture, garden arts and urban planning (in 2017: 211 archaeology, history and garden arts monuments; 93 architecture and urban planning monuments; 6 garden arts monuments; 35 icon stands complete with their icons, old prints et al.); – exploring the cultural heritage sites to identify in situ their borders and occupation layers and studying the facilities (examination, protection object definition, photographic recording, registration card preparation and making a brief historical reference and a technical condition statement); – making an inventory of failing monuments of archaeology, history, monumental arts, architecture and urban planning; – promoting cultural heritage facilities by issuing catalogues, reference books and other printed materials and arranging photographic exhibitions; – producing and installing protection signs at the monuments.
The overall 2016-2020 Trans-Carpathian Region programme for preservation and use of the cultural heritage monuments was approved under Decision by the Trans-Carpathian Regional Council of 22.12.2015 No. 91. The programme’s major focuses are: – ensuring state registration and control over preservation and use of the cultural heritage facilities; – certification at the modern information level of the cultural heritage facilities; – making an electronic database of the certificates; – developing the science-based design and cost estimate documents for conducting repair and restoration operations aimed at rehabilitating from their present failing condition the national and local significance architectural monuments, in particular, wooden sacral architecture monuments; – expert assessment of the prepared design and cost estimate documents for conducting conservation, restoration and rehabilitation operations and provision of the national and local significance monuments with fire and security alarm systems and lightning protection; – performing relevant operations aimed at conservation, restoration and rehabilitation operations and provision of the national and local significance monuments, wooden sacral architecture monuments and other cultural heritage facilities with fire and security alarm systems and lightning protection; – assisting in drawing investments for preservation, repairs, restoration, rehabilitation, museumification and use of the monuments; – creation on the Region’s territory of advanced infrastructure for scientific research, designing and repair or restoration entities for preservation of the cultural heritage monuments; – making provisions for concluding contracts between a cultural heritage protection authority, owners (their authorised bodies) and users of the monuments; – performing operations related to constructing monuments and memorial signs (including a competitive bidding as per Order of the Ukrainian State Committee for Construction and Architecture and the Ministry of Culture and Arts of 30 November 2004 No. 231 / 806), memorial signs and putting in order graves of prominent people in arts, science and culture and fallen defendants of Ukraine; – assisting in revival of the traditional Trans-Carpathian crafts in the area of artistic ceramics, artistic wood carving and processing, artistic metal working and other folk craft types; – providing financial assistance in developing the folk craft logistics; – assisting in inclusion of the cultural heritage facilities in the national and global tourist routes; – development of international cooperation in the cultural heritage protection area; – improvement of the legislative provisions relevant to protection and conservation of the cultural heritage facilities; and – systematic monitoring and supervision of the monuments’ technical, artistic and aesthetic condition.
The 2016-2020 Zaporizzhia District cultural heritage facilities’ preservation programme was approved by the 5th Session of the Zaporizzhia District Council, Zaporizzhia Region, on 31.03.2016, Resolution No. 19. The programme mainly aims at: – ensuring a proper state registration and monitoring procedure over the preservation and use of the cultural heritage facilities; – drafting registration documentation under the state formats in place in respect of the archaeological legacy monuments which were inventoried in 2013; – entering into protection contracts with regard to the cultural heritage monuments; – improving the technical condition of the historical and architectural monuments and conducting overhauls or current maintenance and restoration operations at these cultural patrimony sites; – conducting search and investigation work to identify new cultural patrimony monuments and drafting their relevant registration documentation; – broad-base public outreach on Zaporizzhia District cultural heritage facilities, promotion of the monument protection philosophy and involving the growing generation to events dealing with historical and cultural monument conservation; and – inclusion in the tourist routes of the facilities or sites which are featured by a special historic or cultural significance.
In summary, following the results of reviewing the regional ear-marked programmes, we should specify the following crucial problems or drawbacks: – the programmes reflect a formalistic approach to cultural heritage conservation and development; – the objectives set in the programmes do not take into account a possible collaboration with the communities or NGOs; and – the programmes do not account properly for the challenges related to cultural heritage revival and socialisation.
Aspects of Civil Society Organisations’ Engagement in the Sphere of Cultural Heritage Conservation
Ukraine has multiple national and local level civil society organisations which predominantly aim at historical or cultural legacy conservation. A possible involvement of companies, research, education or culture institutions, NGOs and individuals in the Ukrainian cultural patrimony preservation has been entrenched in Article 11 of the Law of Ukraine On Cultural Heritage Protection, and, namely: “Enterprises of all the proprietary forms, research, education or culture institutions, non-government organisations and citizens shall provide assistance to the cultural heritage protection authorities in their work related to cultural heritage protection, may assume patronage of the cultural legacy facilities for the purpose of ensuring their preservation, assist the government in conducting any events related to protection of the cultural heritage facilities and dissemination of knowledge on these, get involved in cultural patrimony promotion among the public and facilitate its study by children and youths, and involve individuals in its protection.
The Ukrainian Society for Protection of Historical and Cultural Monuments shall be instrumental in involving public at large in participatory protection of the cultural legacy, propagate cultural heritage and laws on its protection, exercise public monitoring of its preservation, use, conservation, restoration, rehabilitation, museumification and maintenance, and assists in the activities pursued by the cultural heritage protection authorities.
Independent expert teams, at the initiative of the public associations, cultural heritage protection authorities, as well as other executive or local authorities and at the expense of their own funds or on a gratuity basis, may conduct a public expertise related to the issues of cultural heritage protection. The conclusions made by such an expert exercise may be taken into account by the executive or local authorities, when making any relevant decisions hereunder.”
With the goal in mind of preservation, restoration, study and promotion of the historical and cultural monuments, as well as monitoring over how the legislation pertaining to their protection and use is complied with, on 21 December 1966 the Ukrainian Society for Protection of Historical and Cultural Monuments (USPHCM) was incorporated. The Society is a charitable research and creative public organisation. For a more profound elaboration of individual USPHCM activity vectors, several research, cultural and educational centres have been set up, such as the Cossack Times Scientific Research Centre, USPHCM Cultural Studies Centre and the Ukrainian Centre for Biographical Necropolistics. There has been in action since 1991 a joint unit of the Ukrainian National Academy of Sciences and the USPHCM, i.e. the Monument Studies Centre. The Society traditionally conducts broad outreach activities: it acted as a founder and publisher of the informative and methodological newsletters The Ukrainian Sights: History and Culture (1969-1989, published since 1989 as a nation-wide scientific journal) and The USPHCM Herald (1997-2003). The Society initiated in 1992 a renewal of the scientific historical and philological journal The Kiev Antiquities, a former press organ of the Kiev Old ‘Gromada’ (1882-1906). Currently, the USPHCM publishes a nation-wide journal The Echo of Ages (since 1994) and several scientific or popular publication series. The Society stages within the framework of its monument protection programmes multiple public or scientific events aimed at drawing attention of both the authorities and public at large to the monument studies and protection agenda.
In order to bring to the public focus the city development agenda, the project entitled Municipal Development and Renewal of Lviv’s Old Town has been arranging since 2012 a so-called City Workshop. Every summer, in June, a specially built open pavilion is installed in a public space which serves for two or three weeks as a creative spot for various events relevant to the city’s agenda. It provides a venue for reports, seminars, exhibitions, educational projects targeting children and youths, and movie shows. Using diverse means, the residents are informed on various topics and, notably, restoration, operating the historic buildings, public involvement in decision-making, mobility and the like. The City Workshop presentations have already taken place in Lviv, Chernivtsi, Odessa, Kiev and Ivano-Frankivsk. It has taken the City Workshop just four years to become an efficient platform which pro-actively promotes cooperation among the civil society organisations, public initiatives, city administration, as well as artists, craftsmen and all those who are interested in the city-related topics.
In summary, following the results of conducting an analysis into the activities pursued by the NGOs in the area of cultural heritage preservation, we should indicate the following key problems: – mistrust on behalf of the NGOs towards the government authorities; – lack of systemic approaches or action coordination in the sphere of cultural heritage conservation; – lack of logical links along the axis ‘cultural heritage consumer – community – experts in the area of cultural heritage conservation – government authorities;’ and – support by the authorities to the private initiatives or social activity generation has remained toxic. Unfortunately, today the Ukrainian cultural legacy is not a crucial factor in the sphere of establishing collective self-respect or social cohesion and has failed to become a catalyst of socio-economic revival.
A successful example of involving NGOs in cultural patrimony protection and re-thinking is provided by the CHOICE project. For two years NGOs representing various cities, towns or region in Ukraine have implemented innovative projects in the area of reviving the cultural heritage’s social role. It is due to the regular-basis discussions, workshops, seminars or experience-sharing exercises that the professional competences, institutional capacities or the local communities’ awareness levels on the historical or cultural resources of a number of Ukrainian cities and towns (Borislav, Uzhgorod, Brody, Kremenets, Dnipro, Starokonstantiniv or Chuguev) and regions (Volyn, Greater Black Sea area or Poltava Region) have been strengthened.
Activities carried out by the NGOs have resulted in creating several maps and mobile applications on the cultural heritage facilities, laid foundations for the regional cultural landscape humanisation, staging open discussions on the ways and opportunities for cultural heritage revitalisation by the local communities and establishing cooperation with the local authorities in the issues related to cultural policy formation.
Currently Central Challenges in the Monument Protection Domain
- By far the greatest challenge is represented by funding channelled to the monument protection activities. Lack of government programmatic financing causes decline and loss of the historical or cultural monuments.
- Sub-standard monitoring enforced on behalf of the monument protection authorities over how the laws and legal acts in effect are. Legislation violations in the area of historical or cultural legacy protection and use have gained a systemic dimension, while the perpetrators are not held duly accountable.
- According to the ratified conventions and UNESCO or Council of Europe recommendations, the issue of cultural patrimony register formation poses an urgent problem for Ukraine. Most historical or cultural monuments in Ukraine are not provided with scientifically developed registration documentation.
- Insufficient level for elaboration of scientific or methodological foundations underpinning the formation the cultural monuments’ digital resources and sub-standard technologies aimed at digital catalogue formation. No elaborated catalogues of virtual reconstruction or key national cultural resources are in place.
- Lack of proper conditions for cultural development, assistance in revival of the ethnic minorities’ popular arts, traditional folk crafts or cultural traditions.
- A serious challenge is represented by lack of systemic approaches or coordination within the government authorities relevant to historical or cultural heritage conservation. From the perspective of Yuriy Opalko, “Dispersion of managerial functions among the Ministry of Culture and Tourism of Ukraine, Ministry of Construction, Architecture, Housing and Utilities of Ukraine and other departments excludes a possible exercise of cohesive state governance over the cultural legacy protection, use and reconstruction. NGO representatives and experts have for many years articulated their opinion on the need for setting up a separate and independent central executive power authority to focus on the issue. It could well be a separate state administration authority (State Committee for Protection of Historical and Cultural Heritage or a Department for Cultural Heritage Protection within the Government).”
- Lack of a favourable climate for attracting private funds to reconstruct the cultural heritage. There are no tax benefits available for sponsors or philanthropists.
- Lack of trust between the government authorities and the NGOs.
- The government authorities do not practice regular-basis consultations with the public on challenges, needs and wishes in the sphere of cultural heritage conservation.
- There is no programme in place which would connect the methods for cultural legacy conservation and development with some elements of social planning.
- Lack of support provided on behalf of the local authorities to the private initiatives in the sphere of cultural patrimony conservation and development.
CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
The activities pursues in the sphere of cultural heritage conservation should be based on quality communications among representatives of various professions. Qualitative changes in the sphere of cultural heritage conservation might only be expected when all those involved in the process join ranks and get to collaboration. Therefore, cooperation between the experts from various sectors and the local authorities has to be supported by the society, NGOs and activists. A successful, well-scheduled and harmonious renaissance of the cultural heritage is a possibility which is conditional on concerted actions between entrepreneurship and the local community’s established position. It is recommendable to adopt the practice of the public’s integration in the processes relevant to cultural legacy conservation. For example, the local authorities could entrust representatives of the public with making joint decisions in the interests of developing the territorial legacy and public spaces.
The local authorities and the NGOs should conduct the process of forming the attitudes of the local community to the cultural heritage protection agenda in the following directions: developing and promoting the knowledge on peculiarities of a patrimony present in a specific historical city or town, developing a programme aimed at preserving the historical landscape and real-estate development regulations, and consulting the public on the ways to conserve the legacy. The local authorities should convince the local community that the town’s cultural heritage is of a great importance for its development.
The civil society organisations should involve in the cultural heritage conservation domain such institutions which would be independent of the government financing sources. The cultural politics and policies should be influenced by scholars, researchers and NGOs, and their opinion must not just have a consultative but decisive voice on the issues of cultural legacy preservation. Besides, these independent scholars, researchers and NGOs should have recognition within the local community for which cultural heritage preservation is a priority.
The local authorities should implement in their municipalities such projects which are jointly organised by the local public. In order to introduce changes in the unsatisfactory condition of cultural development in small towns and other communities, its historically formed sphere of economic activity and businesses should be revived and the vector of providing services for the local public and guests should be developed. Today many residents are disassociated from their active community life and the issues of cultural patrimony conservation lack social support, which fact jeopardises implementation of the cultural heritage conservation programmes. Therefore, the relations between the authorities and the residents and among various age or social groups must be re-established. Updating the historical activity spheres which are characteristic of human settlement will address the issue of founding new worker townships. A significant factor of cultural development will be represented by educational programmes aimed at involving in this sphere of activity some persons who are pushing and not indifferent and will encourage them to hold festivals, volunteer camps, seminars, workshops, conferences, tourist education events and Town Days, and to celebrate important historical dates related to the history of their city, town, region or country.
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