Online event of UNESCO chairs on Intangible Cultural Heritage of Turkey and Azerbaijan was held

On the 9th of April in 2021 “UNESCO chair of intangible cultural heritage in official and unofficial education” of Ankara Haji Bayram Veli University, UNESCO Chair of folk music heritage and epic traditions under the Institute of Folklore of ANAS, National Commission of Turkey on UNESCO, Azerbaijan National Commission on UNESCO, UNESCO accredited institutions ─ Association of intangible cultural heritage and Public Union of Ashig Shamshir-online consultation meeting of UNESCO chairs on material cultural heritage” was held. First of all, the head of the National Commission of Turkey on UNESCO Professor Ojal Oghuz noted that this meeting was the first event on UNESCO chairs in Turkey and Azerbaijan. He noted the great work and support of Elnur Sultanov, the Secretary General of the National Commission of Azerbaijan for UNESCO, in cooperation between the Turkish and Azerbaijani chairs. Professor A.Oghuz mentioned that UNESCO chairs had been greeted with great sympathy and interest in Turkey in recent years.

General Secretary of the National Commission of Azerbaijan for UNESCO Elnur Sultanov noted that the cooperation of UNESCO departments operating in both countries in the field of protection of Intangible Cultural Heritage will create new opportunities for further strengthening of joint activities in the field of study, protection and promotion of cultural heritage of fraternal countries.
Then, Ankara Haji Bayram Veli University, the representative of the Center for Adaptation and Research in Turkish folklore Dr. Gozde Tekin spoke about the activities of the center, research and projects, the work of the museum, publications, business associations and UNESCO courses. Director of the Institute of Folklore ANAS, academician Mukhtar Kazimoglu-Imanov drew attention to the importance of the event. He mentioned the great need for cooperation with organizations in Turkey, especially with organizations established through UNESCO. He also considered it necessary to find common problems. Academician M.Kazimoglu-Imanov touched upon the cooperation of Yunus Emre Institute and Folklore Institute and considered it important to establish cooperation with Haji Bayram Veli University Turkish folklore Research Center in the future.

At the opening meeting the representative of Haji Bayram Veli University of Ankara Dr.Ahmet Erman Aral spoke about the outstanding activities of the organization. After the opening session the event continued its work with speeches of the chair. Department of Folklore Institute of ANAS Dede Gorgud, Dr. Ramazan Gafarli spoke on the theme “The role of higher education institutions, research institutes and UNESCO chairs in the study and promotion of common moral values of Turkic peoples” and said that UNESCO chairs were an integral part of the Global Action Plan to strengthen cooperation and academic mobility among universities and Research Institutes of Academies. The program of UNESCO chairs is considered as the main form of development of inter-university cooperation and aims to help improve the quality of education, training and scientific research. R.Gafarli mentioned the importance of opening the UNESCO chair, which would engage in joint study and promotion of children’s folklore of Turkic peoples.

Head of the department “Mythology” of the Institute of Folklore ANAS, Professor Seyfaddin Rzasoy spoke on “Work to be done to increase the number of departments in the field of intangible cultural heritage in Azerbaijan” and noted that the work experience of Turkish departments in the field of study and promotion of intangible cultural heritage was extremely great. He noted that Azerbaijani chairs should study this experience both theoretically and practically. Professor S.Rzasoy noted that one of the important issues facing UNESCO chairs was to study the Novruz ceremony. Professor Metin Ekiji also said that the main goal in the protection of intangible cultural heritage was to preserve the heritage. He noted that such events were important in terms of sharing the gained experience. From the participants of the event Professor Mukhtar Kutlu, Professor Ali Duymaz, Professor Dilavar Duzgun, Fazil Gasimov and others discussed the future prospects of the chairs.

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