Conservation Philosophies: Global or Local?

A three day international conference organised by

Centre for Conservation Studies, Department of Archaeology, University of York and ICOMOS-UK

3 - 5 June 2010, King’s Manor, York, UK

Agra Fort, India
Agra Fort, India © M & G Therin-Weise

Is there such a thing as a global conservation philosophy for cultural heritage? Should there be? Or should cultural heritage conservation reflect cultural diversity?

The 1965 Venice Charter was based on the idea that the principles guiding the preservation and restoration of ancient buildings should be agreed and laid down on an international basis, with each country being responsible for applying them within the framework of their own culture and traditions.


Shanyang Imperial Palace, China

The Conference will include three keynote papers from internationally prominent practitioners in China, India and UK. They will explore conjunctions and differences between conservation philosophies and principles in China, India and UK and discuss international conservation instruments and guidelines including the China Principles, INTACH Charter and English Heritage Conservation Principles and a possible UK Charter.

(Shenyang Imperial Palace, China © UNESCO/Christian Manhart)

The Call for Papers brought an enormous and very welcome response of high quality Abstracts from different parts of the world; out of these the selected speakers will be addressing the following themes:

  • Are coincidences in conservation ideas between east and west the result of direct contact and exchange of ideas between conservation professionals in the 19th and 20th centuries?
  • Are coincidences of outcome influenced more by changing over- arching philosophies – the westernisation of the east (colonialism) and the easternisation of the west?
  • Is there an over-arching conservation philosophy which brings east and west together at a global level and within which regional and national principles, policies and practice can be developed, or are there fundamental dichotomies and irreconcilable differences?
  • At a practical level, is there potential for international agreement on methods of, and standards for, conservation interventions at cultural heritage sites?


Conference programme 

The conference programme with our distinguished speakers and registration details in now available at the following link:

York-ICOMOS(UK) conference programme (PDF  , 210kb)

We are grateful to York Archaeological Trust, York Minster, Charles Wallace India Trust and York Centre for Conservation Alumni Association for their generous support towards this major international event at York.


The Conference will include three keynote speeches from internationally prominent practitioners in China, India and UK:

Professor Guo Zhan (China), Director World Heritage Expert Committee of China, Vice-President, ICOMOS International;

Professor AG Krishna Menon (India), Convenor INTACH Delhi Chapter;

Paul Drury (UK), The Paul Drury Partnership.

The other distinguished speakers at the conference include:

Xue-cai YuDepartment of tourism, Southeast University, Nanjing, CHINA

Namiko Yamauchi, Japan Cultural Heritage Consultancy, Tokyo, JAPAN

Souad Sassi, University of Mentouri, Constantine, ALGERIA

Biumol Tom, Assistant Professor, College of Engineering, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, INDIA

Vikas Dilawari, Head of Conservation, Kamla Raheja Vidyanidhi Institute of Architecture and Environment Studies, Mumbai, INDIA

Jeff WestICOMOS-UK Executive Committee, UK

Keith Emerick, Inspector of Ancient Monuments, English Heritage, UK

Louise Cooke, Independent Consultant, UK

Sarah Wolferstan, Consultant, Institute of Archaeology, University College London, UK

Susan Denyer, Secretary, ICOMOS-UK; World Heritage Advisor, ICOMOS, London, UK


Suggested Accommodation Options



Alhambra Court Hotel


Coach House Hotel


The Churchill Hotel


 The Dean Court Hotel


The Grange Hotel


Hedley House Hotel


Park Inn Hotel


The Royal York Hotel


Bed & Breakfasts / Guest Houses

23 St Mary’s


Airden House


Abbey Guest House


Beech House


Crook Lodge


Galtres Lodge


Georgian House


Guy Fawkes Inn


Lamb and Lion Inn


The Minster


St Mary’s


Tree Tops


Please note that this is a list of local accommodation options and does not represent an endorsement by either ICOMOS-UK or The University of York. Correct at time of printing. For more accommodation options, please see:


Conference Fees

The registration for the conference in now open.

The conference fee covers the full two-day conference and the Thursday evening reception.

Please note there is a small extra charge for the excursion to Fountains Abbey and Studely Royal on Saturday 5th June.


£145   ICOMOS-UK Members

£145   York Conservation Course Alumni

£190   Non-Members

£  95   Students

£  30   Fountains Abbey Site Visit


To book a place, please complete the booking form on the following link:

York-ICOMOS(UK) conference programme (PDF  , 210kb).


Last few places left!