Thursday, September 06, 2012

Raising global awareness of World Heritage brand

MIRI: The international community can be made more aware of the World Heritage brand.

This was the message to an audience of World Heritage experts from senior research fellow and senior lecturer, Dr Lisa Marie King, of the Curtin Sarawak Research Institute of Curtin University, Sarawak Malaysia.

“We could do a better job in raising awareness of the World Heritage brand and its values to the public in Australia as well as in other countries around the world,” Dr King said at an recent International Union for the Conservation of Nature (IUCN) meeting in Cairns, Australia.

It was held in conjunction with the 40th year of Unesco’s World Heritage Convention to review and discuss topics on Australia’s World Heritage sites.

According to King, the certification awarded to national parks or cultural sites was a significant recognition, thus World Heritage sites should be preserved for future generations to learn from and appreciate.

Her research in Australia found many people unaware that the places they visit were World Heritage sites.

“The research findings will not only influence our presentations of these amazing places to the public, but also how we market them for a greater appreciation of these sites,” said King who will embark on a similar research programme in Malaysia to find out how prominent a role the World Heritage brand has in attracting visitors to World Heritage sites in Malaysia.

She noted four World Heritage sites in Malaysia: Gunung Mulu National Park in Miri; Kinabalu National Park in Kota Kinabalu; Melaka and George Town which are historic cities of the Straits of Malacca; and the archaeological site at Lenggong Valley in Ulu Perak, Perak.

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