ICOMOS World Heritage Panel sessions 2020-2021


Panel 2021 PhotoThe 2021 cycle was particularly challenging in view of the exceptional circumstances due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Late technical evaluation missions carried out on an exceptional basis in December 2020 and January 2021 led to the organization of one ICOMOS World Heritage Panel session in November 2020 and two extraordinary sessions in January 2021.

From 23 to 27 November 2020, the ICOMOS World Heritage Panel met virtually in order to discuss 11 cultural properties nominated for inscription on the World Heritage List in 2021, for which technical evaluation missions were carried out before November 2020.

The Panel meeting is divided in three parts. The first day of the meeting was dedicated to the presentation of the rules of procedures and the Panel members started to examined and discussed the cultural properties nominated for inscription until 24 November 2021.

During the second part held from 25 to 26 November 2021 during the morning, delegations from each nominating States Parties had the opportunity to hold meetings in order to discuss the issues raised with regards to their nominations by the ICOMOS Panel during the first part of the Panel meeting.

During the third and last part of the Panel started in the afternoon of 26 November and lasted until 27 November, Panel members discussed again the nominated properties and adopted provisional recommendations. During this part of the meeting, the content of the technical recommendations was discussed together with the content of the Interim reports and the additional information requests.

The nominations for which technical evaluation missions were carried between November 2020 and January 2021 were examined by two extraordinary sessions held from 12 to 14 January 2021, and on 22 January 2021. The Panel examined and discussed 6 additional nominations. Delegations from each nominating States Parties had the opportunity to hold meetings in order to discuss the issues raised with regards to their nominations by the Panel during the first part of the meeting. Then, the Panel met again to discuss the nominated properties and adopted provisional recommendations on these nominations.

Before the discussions took place, Panel members rigorously examined a range of documents including the nomination dossiers and additional information submitted by States Parties as well as the ICOMOS evaluation mission reports, the desk reviews and information provided by relevant ICOMOS National Committees. All this information was submitted to Panel members in advance before the meeting and Panel members were requested to provide a written report on the basis of a template provided by the Evaluation Unit.

Due to the Covid-19 Pandemic which led to the organisation of online Panel sessions, Ms. Marie-Laure Lavenir, ICOMOS Director General, ensured the co-chairing of the meeting together with Mr. Toshiyuki Kono, president of ICOMOS International.

Over a period of nine days, divided into three sessions, the ICOMOS World Heritage Panel, composed of international conservation experts from 23 countries representing all five continents, carried out in-depth discussions about the nominated properties in order to consider whether the proposed properties fulfill the criteria required for inscription on the World Heritage List and to draft recommendations, in line with the requirements established in the Operational Guidelines, for the next session of the World Heritage Committee.

The ICOMOS Panel, which brings together some thirty persons, is made up of experts appointed by ICOMOS from its networks (ICOMOS members, representatives of ICOMOS International Scientific Committees, ICOMOS Board) and beyond who collectively possess a wide range of relevant cultural heritage skills and experience. The Panel members are selected each year depending on the nature of the properties nominated (e.g., rock art, 20th century heritage, industrial heritage, etc.) and on the basis of geo-cultural balanced representation. The collective expertise of the Panel is complimented by the advice provided by the ICOMOS advisors. They represent the various professional, geographic and cultural sensibilities present at the international level.

Furthermore, each member of the Panel undertakes to attend the whole of the meeting, and to actively take part in the work of the World Heritage Panel. In particular, each Panel member reviewed several files in detail and provided a written report before the beginning of the meetings.

All Panel members must take care to avoid potential perceptions of conflicts of interest. In all cases, an ICOMOS Panel member whose nationality is the same as that of the subject of the evaluation is absent from the discussion and decision-making process. At the beginning of the meeting, all Panel members are required to sign the ICOMOS World Heritage Policy Paper and ICOMOS Commitment of Confidentiality.

The Panel members undertake to respect the confidentiality of the discussions that occur, including the agreed ICOMOS recommendations. In finalizing and releasing the outcomes of the evaluations, communication with States Parties should be conducted solely via the ICOMOS International Secretariat.

The Panel working languages are English and French. Simultaneous translation is provided by ICOMOS through a team of professional translators.

The ICOMOS World Heritage Panel met again virtually in an online meeting in March 2021 to discuss the outcomes following the November 2020 and January 2021 Panel sessions, notably the responses received from the States Parties, in order to finalize the ICOMOS evaluation reports which were submitted to the World Heritage Centre and distributed to the Committee members six weeks before the upcoming World Heritage Committee session. The World Heritage Committee shall then make the final decisions on whether to inscribe or to not inscribe a property, defer the examination of a nomination, or refer a nomination back to the State Party.    


List of 2020 - 2021 Panel Members


Toshiyuki Kono (Japan)

Marie-Laure Lavenir (France)


ICOMOS Panel members

Maria Eugenia Bacci (Venezuela)

Amel Chabbi (UAE)

Gabriel Cooney (Ireland)

Michel Cotte (France)

Abdoul Aziz Guissé (Senegal)

Sharif Shams Imon (Bangladesh)

Pamela Jerome (USA)

Trevor Marchand (UK/Canada)

Peter Phillips (Australia)

Nancy Pollock-Ellwand (Canada)

Laura Robinson (South Africa)

Christophe Sand (New Caledonia)

Jean-Christophe Simon (France)


Representatives from ICOMOS International Scientific Committees

ICAHM - Cynthia Dunning (Switzerland)

ISCCL - David Jacques (UK)


ICOMOS Advisers

Kristal Buckley (Australia)

Luisa De Marco (Italy)

Susan Denyer (UK)

Leticia Leitao (Portugal)

Duncan Marshall (Australia)

Rusudan Mirzikhasvili (Georgia)

Niklas Schulze (Mexico)


Relationship between nominations and Panel members per region


Dossiers 2020


Panel members







Arab States


























The ICOMOS World Heritage Panel members © ICOMOS International

By using this website you agree to the use of cookies to recognize your repeat visits and preferences, the display of videos and the measurement of audiences.No cookies are used to track you for commercial or advertising purposes.

Your browser and online tools allow you to adjust the setting of these cookies. Learn more

I understand

Cookies Policy

ICOMOS informs you that, when browsing the ICOMOS website and all the pages of this domain, cookies are placed on the user's computer, mobile or tablet. No cookies are used to track users for commercial or advertising purposes.

A cookie is a piece of information stored by a website on the user's computer and that the user's browser provides to the website during each user’s visit.

These cookies essentially allow ICOMOS to:

You will find below the list of cookies used by our website and their characteristics:

Cookies created by the use of a third-part service on the website:



For information:

You can set up your browser to alert you of the presence cookies and offer you to accept them or not. You can accept or refuse cookies on a case-by-case basis or refuse them once and for all. However, some features of the ICOM website cannot function properly without cookies activated. 

The setting of cookies is different for each browser and generally described in the help menus. You will find more explanations on how to proceed via the links below.

Firefox   •  



Internet Explorer


Dowload ICOMOS Cookies Policy