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South Korea

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Author winterkjm
#256 | Posted: 19 Aug 2017 13:04 
Update on the Jeju Island Extension.

Author winterkjm
#257 | Posted: 15 Oct 2017 12:26 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Suncheon is seeking the designation as a UNESCO Biosphere reserve first. The biosphere designation could come as soon as 2018 or 2019 and it would include several ecological areas in and around Suncheon, including a linked corridor to (2) Ramsar wetlands.

Korean cities and regions are very keen on "branding" in regards to tourism. Jeju is often touted as special because of its "triple crown" designation as world heritage, biosphere reserve, and global geopark. North & South Jeolla province are on an ambitious mission to achieve a flurry of diverse designations.

The Sourthwest Coast Tidal Flat nomination dossier is fairly advanced at this point and its certainly a priority nomination. In the next couple years, Korea's Southwest coast region could have additional biosphere reserves, ramsar sites, world heritage sites (cultural & natural), and Global Geoparks!

Current Designations Jeolla Province

Ramsar (7)
Muan Tidal Flat
Jeungdo Tidal Flat
Gochang & Buan Tidal Flats
Suncheon Bay
Dongcheon Estuary
Ungok Wetland
Jangdo Wetland

IUCN Green List (1)
Jirisan National Park

UNESCO Biosphere Reserves (2)
Shinan Dadohae

World Heritage (1)
Gochang, Hwasun Dolmen Sites

Current Nominations Jeolla Province

World Heritage (8)
- Traditional Buddhist Mountain Temples of Korea (Seonamsa, Daeheungsa) 2018
- Seowon, Confucian Academies of Korea (Pilam, Museong) 2019
- Southwestern Coast Tidal Flats
- Naganeupseong, Town Fortress and Village
- Stone Buddhas and Pagodas at Hwasun Unjusa Temple
- Sites of fossilized dinosaurs throughout the Southern Seacoast
- Salterns
- Kangjingun Kiln Sites

UNESCO Biosphere Reserve (1)
- Suncheon

UNESCO Global Geopark (1)
- Mudeungsan National Park

Author elsslots
#258 | Posted: 16 Oct 2017 12:06 
They take these things seriously in Korea indeed: they are looking for seven lost UNECSCO certificates that verify the inscription of Korean cultural assets on UNESCO's World Heritage List.

Author winterkjm
#259 | Posted: 8 Nov 2017 21:16 
Interesting detail from an article today.

"There are additional World Heritage sites including Baekje Historical Remains Extension List (2022), Namwon and Jangsu Kaya Ruins (provisional list listing / 2020), and Byeonggolje (inclusion in the temporary list / 2019). It will become a treasure trove of Korea's representative World Heritage Sites."

Author winterkjm
#260 | Posted: 8 Nov 2017 21:28 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Update - ROK Nomination Plan

2018 WHC
- Traditional Buddhist Mountain Temples of Korea (Cultural)
2019 WHC
- Seowon, Neo-Confucian Academies of the Joseon Dynasty (Cultural)
- Southwest Coast Tidal Flats (Natural)
2020 WHC
- Gaya Tumuli: Gimhae & Jisan-dong (Cultural)
2021 WHC
- Hanyangdoseong, the Seoul City Wall (Cultural)
2022 WHC
- Ruins of the Hanseong-Baekje [Extension] (Cultural)

Plans for Tentative List (inclusion)
- Ruins of the Hanseong-Baekje [Extension] (2018-2019)
- Ganghwa Island Marine Heritage Sites (2018-19)
- Busan Provisional Capital and Refugee Trail (2018-19)
- Christian Heritage and Martyr Sites of Korea (2018-19)
- Byeokgolje and Uirimji Resevoir (2019)
- Namwon and Jangsu Kaya Ruins (2020)

Author winterkjm
#261 | Posted: 10 Dec 2017 09:34 | Edited by: winterkjm 
I thought I would continue this conversation here.

South Korea - !!! The Whole Country !!!

I read this a while back, its a funny piece about the nearly unparalleled drive Korea has in pursuing world heritage status since Democratization. Yet, the writer being a Westerner makes me feel the satire is more geared toward the expat community in Korea. The best satire does have a grain of truth, for sure!

Nevertheless, I do think Korea's pursuit regarding cultural heritage preservation is admirable when considering the context of its near extinction during the 20th century. Sounds depressing I know, but I think this is ultimately the source of the passion (or obsession) if you will.

This article really sheds light on the massive amount of resources and labor funneled toward heritage projects.

Experts say that a budget plan for 2018, which was passed at the National Assembly on Wednesday, reflects an increased interest on the part of President Moon in the Gaya project. The budget for research of ancient Gaya culture has expanded by 1 billion won (913,000 U.S. dollars) to 3.2 billion won (2.94 million dollars). In addition, the separate budget on repair and maintenance of Gaya heritage has also jumped by 2 billion won (1.82 million dollars) to 14.5 billion won (13.2 million dollars).

"It is imperative that we keep the principle of ascertaining historical evidence and conducting thorough research first before embarking on restoration," said an official from the cultural heritage circles. "If the government and municipalities are obsessed with short-term gains, it could lead to another distortion of history."

Author winterkjm
#262 | Posted: 4 Mar 2018 20:27 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Wando Cultural Landscape (Korea)

The Cultural Heritage Administration and Heritage England have developed quite the partnership over the years! This is not the first time they made the trip to Korea and vice versa.

"Henry Owen John, a foreign expert who attended the seminar, is an English expert in archeology. He is an international adviser to Historic England. He is a specialist in the registration of UNESCO World Heritage Site in Lake District, UK."

The heart of the cultural landscape nomination:
Slow City Cheongsando
Wando Arboretum
Bogildo Yunseondo Grove

Author meltwaterfalls
#263 | Posted: 5 Mar 2018 04:27 | Edited by: meltwaterfalls 
The Cultural Heritage Administration and Heritage England have developed quite the partnership over the years! This is not the first time they made the trip to Korea and vice versa.

I actually met with the Korean team when they were over in 2013 (I think) It was part of a larger project to develop ties between the two countries heritage sectors.

Looks like it is carrying on and hopefully bearing some fruit.

Author winterkjm
#264 | Posted: 23 Mar 2018 09:51 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Looks like Korea has one "incomplete" nomination for 2019. The Southwest Coast Tidal Flats will move to 2020 according to the Cultural Heritage Administration.

Author winterkjm
#265 | Posted: 30 Mar 2018 00:50 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Update - ROK Nomination Plan

2018 WHC
- Traditional Buddhist Mountain Temples of Korea (Cultural)

2019 WHC
- Seowon, Neo-Confucian Academies of the Joseon Dynasty (Cultural)

2020 WHC
- Southwest Coast Tidal Flats (Natural)

2021 WHC
- Gaya Tumuli: Gimhae & Jisan-dong (Cultural)

2022 WHC
- Hanyangdoseong, the Seoul City Wall (Cultural)

Korea is 0 for 3 as of late. Two withdrawn nominations (Seowon, Seoul City Wall) and one incomplete nomination (Tidal Flats). Soon I suspect we'll hear the ICOMOS evaluation on Korea's 2018 nomination. It might very well be the bar for OUV has been raised? Perhaps the Cultural Heritage Administration has rushed nominations in their ambitious bid(s) to secure UNESCO status? Could it be Korea is reaching its threshold of world heritage sites that can demonstrate OUV?

Author winterkjm
#266 | Posted: 18 Jun 2018 12:35 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Japan has been successful recently with modern cultural nominations.

2014 - Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution (1850 - 1910)
2015 - Tomioka Silk Mill and Related Sites (1870 - 1900)

Korea clearly aims for similar success. However, while Japan's modern heritage is connected almost exclusively to industrialization, Korea must find a somewhat different path.

1st option - Joseon Efforts to Modernize
- Late Joseon - Daehan Empire
- Jeong-dong: Old Legation Quarter

2nd option - Dark History (Colonialism)
- Seodaemun Prison
- Japanese Colonial Buildings - Gunsan

3rd option - Survival and Refugee Experience
- Busan Provisional Capital and Refugee Trail

4th option - Christian Heritage (currently 8 cathedrals/churches are listed as historic sites)
- Christian Heritage and Martyr Sites of Korea

It is not clear which path the Cultural Heritage Administration of Korea will take. There have been numerous reports on the Busan nomination, seemingly this is the front-runner. Modern heritage has been a focal point regarding preservation in Korea in the last decade. Analyzing the CHA heritage search tool may shed some light on Korea's attempts to inscribe heritage sites from different periods of history.

Cultural Heritage Administration - Heritage Search
- Current WHS/Inscriptions that represent that period in Korea History are in BOLD
- Periods with no WHS are in italics

Prehistoric Age - 7 Historic Sites
Stone Age - 9 Historic Sites (1 TWHS)
Bronze Age - 12 Historic Sites
Iron Age - 4 Historic Sites
Samhan Period - 1 Historic Site
Three Kingdoms Period - 56 Historic Sites
Goguryeo - 2 Historic Sites (1 TWHS)
Baekje - 33 Historic Sites
Silla - 45 Historic Sites
Gaya - 14 Historic Sites (2 TWHS)
Unified Silla - 50 Historic Sites
Goryeo - 37 Historic Sites
Joseon - 133 Historic Sites
Great Han Empire Period - 14 Historic Sites
Japanese Imperial Period - 19 Historic Sites

I feel the nomination "Ancient Mountain Fortresses in Central Korea" is a long shot, but would include a Goguryeo Fortress. The Gaya nomination is official as the priority dossier for 2021, this has a better chance of inscription in my view. Daegokcheon Stream Petroglyphs has been a priority for years and it would fulfill a sought after inscription covering the Stone Age period in Korea, but complications in preserving the petroglyphs have preventing an official submission so far.

That leaves only: Prehistoric Age, Iron Age, Samhan Period, Great Han Empire Period, and Japanese Imperial Period. Representational sites from all of these listed periods are in development, some far more advanced than others.

Author winterkjm
#267 | Posted: 29 Sep 2018 08:22 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Link two TWHS nominations into one? Seoraksan and Kumgang Mountains, a key portion of the Baekdudaegan Mountain range. Mixed heritage, with cultural and natural values. It is premature to realize a DMZ WHS, but this nomination (under the current government) is actually possible in the near term. The DPRK has been active in achieving a UNESCO Biosphere inscription of Mount Kumgang in 2018, while the ROK achieved this for Mount Seorak in 1982 and an extension in 2016.

In addition, Mt. Kumgang and the Historical Relics (DPRK) benifitted recently from an international assistance request that was approved in May 2018 for Preparation of nomination: "upstream advice and guidance in the identification of the potential OUV" ($27,000). Therefore, we know Mount Kumgang is an active nomination.

Author winterkjm
#268 | Posted: 30 Dec 2018 15:59 | Edited by: winterkjm 

The Gaya Tumuli nomination which is a lock for 2021 has expanded greatly over the years. The official website is full of information about each tumuli cluster that makes up this nomination. The original proposal(s) began as two separate tentative nominations in 2013, totaling 3 components. Today the nomination simply referenced as Gaya Tumuli includes 7 components spread out over three provinces.

Criteria for Inscription
ⅲ. bear a unique or at least exceptional testimony to a cultural tradition or to a civilization which is living or which has disappeared.

This promotional video in English highlights the historical importance of the Gaya Confederacy. I visited Goryeong Jisan-dong Daegaya Tumuli, which is the most famous of the 7 components and perhaps most suited for visitors (large museum, marked paths, multi-language educational signs, etc).

Other Components of Interest:

- Hapcheon Okjeon Tumuli is adjacent to the Hapcheon Museum and includes artifacts from the tombs including Roman glass, a golden sword, and horse armor.
- Gimhae Daeseong-dong Tumuli is adjacent to the Daeseongdong Tomb Museum, which can be reached conveniently from Busan using the Busan-Gimhae Light Rail Transit.

I may try to visit the later two sites in Hapcheon and Gimhae when I return to Korea in 2021. For planned itineraries that include Haeinsa Temple and Upo Wetland, these 3 components located in Goryeong, Hapcheon, and Gimhae are the most accessible.

Author winterkjm
#269 | Posted: 5 Apr 2019 09:28 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Catholic Relics in Chungnam Province - Nomination is progressing and moving forward to be included on the tentative list. These are just a couple of the sites that were discussed in the Cultural Heritage Administration meetings.

Historic Site Related to Catholic Priest Kim Dae-geon at Solmoe Maeul, Dangjin

Haemieupseong Walled Town, Seosan

Hongjueupseong Walled Town, Hongseong

Tomb of Patriotic Martyrs, Hongseong

Gongseri Catholic Church

Author winterkjm
#270 | Posted: 6 Apr 2019 14:57 | Edited by: winterkjm 
Potential candidates for Korea's Tentative List (2019-2021)?

[Extension] Jeju Volcanic Island and Lava Tubes (3 additional components)
[Extension] Baekje Historical Remains Area (11 additional components)
Catholic Relics in Chungnam Province (8 components)
Busan Provisional Capital (7 components)
Maritime Fortifications: Ganghwa Island and Gimpo (6 components)

The Cultural Heritage Administration is involved in a comprehensive process of evaluating properties to be considered for Korea's Tentative List. In fact, all nominations above have been "in the works" for years. I was pre-mature in my analysis when I assumed based on reports that some or many of these nominations would be officially submitted in 2016, 2017, or 2018. We are now approaching 10 years from Korea's last major tentative list update 2010-2011 (January). Two inscriptions have resulted from that tentative list update: Baekje Historic Areas and Sansa, Buddhist Mountain Monasteries in Korea. With nominations forthcoming in 2019, 2020, and 2021 there is no shortage of nominations moving toward inscription, therefore no rush to add new tentative nominations.

The nominations above are quite complex as serial properties, various components are sometimes located in different cities, and certain sites still require national protection. Demonstrating OUV may also be challenging for Busan's nomination as its historical value rests primarily on the years 1950 to 1953. The Catholic nomination which is heavily focused on the person of Saint Andrew Kim Dae-geon (1821-1846) in two of the components, his birthplace and the place he was martyred, is perhaps based too much on associative meaning rather than historical remains. Additionally, some of the Catholic components still require national designation as a historic site.

There are dozens of additional nominations that have stakeholders who certainly have expressed interest. Perhaps, some will progress enough and be evaluated by the Cultural Heritage Administration favorably, yet I suspect many will be rejected. For example, one recent report claims Ullreung-do is seeking to be nominated and then inscribed by 2023! It might be added to Korea's tentative list in the coming years (perhaps), but it almost certainly would not take precedence over other nominations already on the tentative list. The fact that volcanic sites are already over-represented on the list seems like a major barrier for this aspiring nomination.

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