We held our most recent EC/Board meeting on 16 February, as I mentioned in my last blog. (This one actually covers a fortnight ago, as I was in France last week enjoying the winter sunshine. Sigh.)
We hold our EC/Board calls by webinar. There is something really magical about seeing the names of our governance and Secretariat volunteers pop up on the screen from all over the world. And then imagining where they are, what it’s like, what time it is …
It doesn’t always work smoothly but we’ve been getting better at these over the years. In the early days I remember there was often much confusion about the timings of the calls. Or indeed long pauses followed by people speaking over one another. But the technology has improved greatly and the calls are now expertly chaired by Fiona, with Bill running constant technical support and me taking rapid notes!
Firstly, the meeting approved the 2016 draft financial statements and budget for 2017. Our Small Grants Programme is listed in the operating budget this year, which is great news for our members out there looking for financial support for small, one-off projects. Look out for the next call which will be announced very shortly!
In addition, we also reviewed progress against the strategy. INTO uses a one-page planning method, which everyone agrees is great at focussing on tasks under our four Strategies: Family; Growth; Voice and Strength.
Secondly, the team considered a paper about governance principles. This aimed to set out the top level recommendations of the Governance Working Group before finalising the new draft constitution. There was broad endorsement, although a couple of points were raised that will be fed back to the Working Group.
Once approved by the EC/Board and the Trustees, the new constitution will be recommended to the INTO membership for final approval at Congress in September.
The next item on the agenda was World Heritage Day. We have been thinking about the best way to build on last year’s successful launch of the State of Global Heritage Report. Perhaps in partnership with WWF-UK (they did a big piece on endangered World Heritage Sites in 2016)? Or by expanding on the ICOMOS theme of sustainable tourism. We have agreed to plough our own furrow to some extent as we will be developing the work we did last year on youth and heritage. We believe this is so important, particularly in Africa where the population is so young – and the (often intangible) heritage so rich. Please send us content for Fiona’s speech by Friday 10th March!
Following on from that, the EC/Board gave consideration to the proposal for a new INTO Heritage Trusts Handbook, building on Dr June Taboroff’s 2002 Handbook. The meeting agreed that, after 15 years, it was very timely to move forward with this project. There have certainly been a lot of changes and developments in that time.
These include a reduction in government support for heritage, growth of civil society organisations and the new challenges posed by migration, changing demographics and other societal trends.
What is more, a new forward looking handbook that responds to the interests and needs of both INTO and its members will be a great outcome from the 2017 Conference.
Oliver finished the meeting with a brief report on plans for the ICNT in Indonesia, which the EC/Board agreed all sounded very positive and exciting.
Find out more here. We really hope to see you there!
Thanks for reading!