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Colloquium on the Interface Between Cultural and Natural Heritage First Call for Papers



Vision Ethiopia Eighth Conference,

in Collaboration with

the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism


the Ministry of Science and Higher Education


June 12-14, 2019


Colloquium on the Interface Between Cultural and Natural Heritage


First Call for Papers

Videos From Around The World

Following the successful conclusion of Vision Ethiopia’s Seventh Conference that was held in Addis Ababa in collaboration with the Ministry of Science and Higher Education of the Federal Republic of Ethiopia, the Board of Directors of Vision Ethiopia is pleased to announce that the Eighth Conference will be held in Ethiopia, between June 12 and 14, 2019. It will be followed by a post-conference tour of historical sights and scenes.

Consistent with Vision Ethiopia’s mission, the primary aim of the Eighth Conference is to create an independent forum for scholars, policy makers and other professionals to present their policy-related work designed to benefit all Ethiopians. The conference intends to address Ethiopia’s collective cultural and natural heritage, crossing multiple disciplines and highlighting the contributions of the diverse inhabitants of the country. Presenters are expected to explore a wide range of issues, including accurate documentation and interpretation, restoration, preservation, digitalization, and safeguarding the country’s tangible and intangible cultural and natural heritage, as well as the restitution of the country’s looted heritage over the centuries.

Most analysts agree that cultural heritage can be defined within the social, political, and economic context of a country. At the international level, many countries have signed conventions that protect, promote, and conserve cultural and natural heritage. While there is remarkable evidence of human ancestry, fascinating landscapes, rituals, writing systems, arts, inscriptions and other priceless heritage in Ethiopia, the diverse and rich cultural and natural treasures remain  underremain under-researched; under represented globally; poorly taught at schools and universities; and inadequately managed, marketed and resourced.

The forthcoming conference is, therefore, intended to serve not only as a forum for the sharing of knowledge, skills, and experience that would be useful for policy makers, but also for building local capacity in the preservation, management and prudent development of the country’s cultural and natural heritage.  The following are some of the relevant features of the colloquium: understanding of Ethiopia’s indigenous knowledge; protection of intellectual property rights   of indigenous knowledge; and regulatory reforms with regard to trade in and preservation of indigenous knowledge and other cultural heritage, including artifacts, religious relics, historical buildings, and ways and means of preserving manuscripts and other priceless objects. Other aspects of the conference may include recommendations for the return of stolen and ransacked national heritage. Further, papers may explore avenues of cooperation within Africa for the preservation of African footprints in the rest of the world.

We particularly invite experts and other professionals from diverse disciplines, such as sociology, heritage building and artifact engineering, anthropology, archaeology, ethnography, museology, musicology, philology of Ethiopian languages, and the economics and management of culture. Most importantly, we   encourage academics and professionals in Ethiopia to share their research findings and experience, with a view to influencing pragmatic decision-making that benefits all Ethiopians.

Papers must have theoretical depth and be supported by reliable scientific evidence. They must be cross disciplinary, grounded in the pertinent literature, and have policy orientation and relevant applications. It must also be palatable to an international audience. While we acknowledge the work done by contributors to   conferences on Ethiopian studies over the years, pure theoretical papers that are appropriate for an academic audience may not be of interest for this colloquium. Instead, manuscripts that have policy implications and are in consonance with the rapidly changing technology and economics in the country and internationally would be viewed favorably. In addition, papers must be dispassionate, forward-looking, innovative, objective, non-parochial and independent. Authors are advised to avoid using anecdotal evidence, and case experiences need to be put together in a coherent manner geared towards providing useful policy options. Finally, authors are encouraged to articulate why their paper is important for the type of transition that Ethiopia is undergoing.

All papers and proposals will go through a normal review process. Decision about the format, venue or date of presentation of an accepted paper is at the discretion of Vision Ethiopia. Papers may be written in either Amharic or in English. However, speakers are encouraged to consider reaching a wider Ethiopian audience, as the primary mission of Vision Ethiopia’s conferences is creating public awareness of issues of national importance. Completed papers not exceeding 5000 words in length along with an abstract and a conclusion must reach on or before April 30, 2019.

Consistent with our past practice, we aim to transmit the proceedings of the conference live, and to make open space available for the media. The copyright of the videos is the property of Vision Ethiopia. Travel and hospitality industries, hotels and transport companies, as well as exhibitors and heritage institutions in Ethiopia that might be interested to be part of the conference must send their request to the same email address (above) before April 30 2019. For more information about Vision Ethiopia, visit


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