Opens an external page Link to the homepage

Bundesamt für Naturschutz

New Guidelines on Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas

International Academy for Nature Conservation
Putbus/Insel Vilm
The cultural and spiritual values of nature are of high importance for nature conservation in protected areas. The IUCN Best Practice Guidelines on Promoting the Cultural and Spiritual Significance of Nature in Protected Area Management and Governance, published today, provide guidance on how to consider the cultural and spiritual values attributed to sites within protected areas. The International Academy for Nature Conservation Isle of Vilm (INA) of the German Federal Agency for Nature Conservation (BfN) was involved in the creation of the guidelines.

The purpose of the guidelines is to broaden the scope of protected area governance and management to take into account the cultural, spiritual, aesthetic, historic, and social significance that natural features and natural landscapes have for people of diverse societies and cultures, both traditional and modern.

"By building on work that has been done by the IUCN Specialist Group on Cultural and Spiritual Values of Protected Areas (CSVPA) and its affiliates, the Sacred Natural Sites Initiative and the Delos Initiative, drafting the guidelines was done as inclusively as possible, bringing together protected area managers, representatives of Indigenous Peoples and local communities, mainstream religions, and environmental organizations", said Andrea Strauss of the INA.

BfN and additional partners supported this process during two workshops held on the Isle of Vilm in 2016 and 2017 and in the following years, until it's present conclusion. The publication provides recommendations and practical examples on how the human-nature relationship in protected areas can be reflected and shaped more strongly. The cultural and spiritual significance of nature and protected areas provides a strong motivation for preservation of nature. Focusing more on this relationship can not only increase the acceptance of protected areas, but also lead to changing values in the long term.

weiterführender Inhalt

Cultural and spiritual significance of nature

Bas Verschuuren, Josep-Maria Mallarach, Edwin Bernbaum, Jeremy Spoon, Steve Brown, Radhika Borde, Jessica Brown, Mark Calamia, Nora Mitchell, Mark Infield, Emma Le
External publication
The cultural and spiritual significance of nature has been defined as the spiritual, cultural, inspirational, aesthetic, historic and social... more
To the top