Cultural anthropologists, academics and researchers are set to gain a greater understanding of Abu Dhabi’s intangible heritage in a workshop in Abu Dhabi and Al Ain.
Organized by Abu Dhabi Tourism and Culture Authority (TCA Abu Dhabi) under the title, “Identifying Community-based Intangible Cultural Heritage,” the workshop targets heritage enthusiasts, particularly teachers and researchers at the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Community Development, heritage departments, local institutions, individuals, non-governmental organizations (NGOs) and others involved in preserving intangible cultural heritage.
The workshop, running between August 24 and September 4, will be supervised by Dr. Nasser Ali Al Humairi, intangible heritage director and Unesco international files coordinator at TCA Abu Dhabi. Participants will receive theoretical training for five days in Abu Dhabi, followed by another five days of practical training in Al Ain City on how to collect documented information covering three intangible cultural heritage elements (Al Harbiyah, Al Majlis and Arabian coffee) which will be on the Unesco’s Intangible Heritage List in 2015.
“This is a very important workshop because the process of identifying community-based intangible cultural heritage is a fairly new practice which does not have a fixed form yet. It draws on different experiences and tools used in multiple research areas including participatory rural appraisal and other developmental participatory tools; receiving free, conscious prior approval by local communities on the decisions related to their future; participatory ethnographic studies, folkloric surveys; oral history studies; and spatial data management and participatory delivery,” said Dr Nasser Al Humairi.