Cultural heritage management in the context of socio-economic development of Syria: problems and opportunities

Alghafri M.A.1
1 Damascus University

Статья в журнале

Экономика, предпринимательство и право
Том 10, Номер 1 (Январь 2020)

Цитировать:
Alghafri M.A. Cultural heritage management in the context of socio-economic development of Syria: problems and opportunities // Экономика, предпринимательство и право. – 2020. – Том 10. – № 1. – С. 163-176. – doi: 10.18334/epp.10.1.41565.

Эта статья проиндексирована РИНЦ, см. https://elibrary.ru/item.asp?id=42446105

Аннотация:
In any country maybe create a huge of economic revenue through management of socio-economic development in cultural heritage sites. The purpose of the study was to evaluate management of development with cultural heritage, moreover to explore a good and effective management opportunities, in addition to determine the most problems of development. The methodology adopted for this study involved a mixed method to measure Syrian local community image toward cultural heritage management, (quantitative approach). A qualitative approach was utilized to assess the management plan of socio-economic development in Syrian territory with cultural heritage and planning. Syria lacks a program to introduce cultural heritage into economic development projects. In addition to that, it has not included the social dimensions in management process. The study showed that the achieving socio-economic development of the territory through successful management, involvement of the local community and stakeholders in the development plan; will bring significant benefits to government and society, as well as the protection of cultural heritage sites. Contrary to expectations, the results indicated that the successful socio-economic development processes will be more useful in improving cultural heritage protection, and the level of living for the local community, which raises the local and regional economy level. The recommendations according to the results, implemented insert cultural heritage management and conservation process prominently in local socio- economic development programs, which can be applied to architectural and archaeological heritage sites. Further study is required to involvement of local community in socio-economic development management with cultural heritage sites.

Ключевые слова: cultural heritage, cultural economics, management, local community, regional development, Syria

JEL-классификация: Q01, R19, R58, Z19



1. Introduction

The development management of cultural heritage has considered as a source of economic activity [6, 13], as employment, income [16, 21] (Petr, 2015; Algafri, 2019), and public revenue for national and local economies in many countries. At the same time, many territories and urban centers experiencing economic decline [8, 23] are in need of reorientation of their economic strategies and of taking advantage of the chance socio-economic development with cultural heritage and creative industries as the engine for territories development and social and cultural vitalities [1, 9] (Alghafri, 2019; Tuan, Navrud, 2008).

Good management of cultural heritage sites inevitably serves as a generator of economic growth and social inclusion [2, 20] (Alghafri, 2019; Fedorova, 2012). It can be achieved through participation of stakeholders and the community in the management plan [3, 22] (Alghafri, 2019; Sharovarina, 2012) because cultural heritage in Syria is a shared resource and a common good [12, 17] (Algafri, Mokhammad, 2019). Further, the key challenges in the relation of cultural heritage and socio-economic development that should be resolved are the financing and budget [15,19] (Algafri, 2019; Sokolova, 2013), management and the law of governments, sustainable of heritage management, and presenting of cultural heritage activities [5, 14] (Murzyn, 2012; Algafri, 2018).

Furthermore, climate change, wars and urbanization may considered a dangerous threat to cultural heritage assets [7, 18] (Sofia, Jacob, 2018; Veklenko, Algafri, Mokhammad, 2019) complicating additional the role of cultural heritage in the local, regional and international socio-economic development projects [10, 11]. This study will explore potentials attempts to create economic and social benefits from cultural heritage projects. In particular, the study is focused on the factors that create economic benefits for cultural heritage. In addition to exploring factors should be developed, supported and managed to improve the cultural heritage management plan.

1.1. Purpose of the study

The purpose of the study was to evaluate management of socio-economic development with cultural heritage, moreover to explore the good opportunities of cultural heritage management, in addition to determine the most problems of socio-economic development.

1.2. Problem of the research

The problem of the research was the Syria lacks a program to introduce cultural heritage into economic development projects. in addition to that, it has not included the social dimensions in management process.

1.3. Research questions

The research will give solutions to solve the problems of the research through the questions:

How can cultural heritage into economic development projects be introduced?

How can the social dimensions in management process be included?

1.4. Research Data

The information was gathered from literature, newspapers, Internet and by interviewing. The single case study approach was carried out in search of empirical data on two cities (Damascus and Aleppo) in Syria. The questionnaires were designed among the local community and management personnel.

1.5. Research Method

In the research has been used sampling methods; for the questionnaire survey (Q1-local respondents) was used random sampling and purposive sampling for questionnaire (Q2- management personnel). The analysis of the data has been used by the SPSS Version 25. In addition, has been used the quantitative and qualitative analysis methods in the survey study for the local community and the managers. The main survey was conducted over a period of more than twenty five (25) days in February 2019.

The Pearson’s Correlation method has been used for data measured in the interval (numeric) scale. This method was used to verify whether there was a significant relationship among the two variables in this research study. The researcher has decided to follow the Cohen [4] (Cohen, 1988) method which could investigate the relationship as follows:

Table 1

Strength of the relationship

No.
Correlation Coefficient
Type of Strength
1.
0.1 to 0.29 or -0.1 to -0.29
Weak
2.
0.30 to 0.49 or -0.30 to -0.49
Moderate
3.
0.50 to 1.0 or -0.50 to -1.0
Strong
Source: [4] (Cohen, 1988)

1.6. Research Methodology

The surveys were distributed to local community in the center of the cities (Damascus and Aleppo, the total number 300 with about 291 responses for local community). The surveys were distributed to managers (tourism officer, academician, conservation officer and NGO activist), the total number was 25 with about 19 responses. The research has used the mixed methodology design, a mixture of both the qualitative and quantitative methods. All items measurements in each section in a questionnaire that were measured by the Five-point Likert’s Scale were found to be adequate, reliable and appropriate. The reliability assumption was met and appropriate for further analysis and the indicators were found to be a good reference for any research.

2. Research Results and Discussion

Amongst the statements obtained, the study found the highest ranking in the conservation management in cultural heritage sites in Syria was that the important role of cultural heritage sites in local economic development. Also one should wisely use the cultural heritage asset now so that their grandchildren could benefit from it; that the local people should be informed and consulted on matters relating to the development and future of Syrian cultural heritage; and the use and management of the heritage tourism activities (Table 2).

The study found that 98.0 % of the locals agreed that successful management of heritage sites helps attract tourist groups and the important role of cultural heritage sites in local economic development. The study found that 97.9 % of the locals agreed that they should wisely use the cultural heritage asset now, so that their grandchildren could benefit from it. The study also found that the local respondents (95.7 %) the presence of cadres qualified for cultural heritage management. The study also found that the local respondents (36.7 %) agreed that the heritage assets would be sustained if the current management practices continued. However, 27.3 % agreed that the infrastructure is equipped to the attract of tourism groups.

Table 2

Views on the socio- economic management of the Syrian cultural heritage sites

(total mean 3.53)

Variables
Mean
SD
( %)
The important role of cultural heritage in local socio- economic development.
4.34
0.66
98.0
The presence of cadres qualified for cultural heritage management in Syria.
4.24
0.76
95.7
The infrastructure in Syria is equipped to the develop of tourism sector.
2.13
0.92
27.3
Successful management plan of cultural heritage helps attract tourist groups.
4.30
0.66
98.0
Must wisely make use of the cultural heritage asset now, so that may benefit future generation from it.
4.27
0.65
97.9
Do you believe that the cultural heritage assets could be sustained with the current government management practices?
2.35
1.09
36.7
We have more important things to think about than the loss of the cultural heritage site.
2.68
1.02
50.5
There is a formal channel of communication for discussing the local cultural heritage management activities.
3.98
0.92
73.4
Number of respondents
291
Legend: Low =1. 00-2.99; Moderate= 3.00-3.99 and High = 4.00-5.00

Source: compiled by the author according of the SPSS analysis

The descriptive statistics in Table 3 reveal the results of the opinions of the managers towards the specific issues regarding the heritage conservation of the Syrian cultural heritage sites. The study has found that 42.1 % of the respondents opined that the most important issue in the heritage conservation of the cultural heritage sites was noninvolvement of local community in management plan while 31.5 % of the respondents were found the lack of experts in field of heritage management as the second most important issue in the heritage conservation of the Syrian cultural heritage.

Table 3

Opinions of the managers on the specific issues in cultural heritage management

Variable
Most Important
Second Important
()
(%)
()
(%)
Noninvolvement of local community in management plan
8
42.1
2
10.5
Inappropriate management process
2
10.5
1
5.3
Not included the socio- economic dimensions in management process.
0
0
1
5.3
The lack of experts in field of heritage management
4
21.0
6
31.5
Lack of funding resources
1
5.3
3
15.7
Excessive tourism and development pressure
1
5.3
1
5.3
Lack of public awareness and support
1
5.3
2
10.5
Lack of marketing campaigns
1
5.3
1
5.3
The country's instability because of the war
1
5.3
2
10.5
Other, please specify
0
0
0
0
Total
19
100.0
19
100.0
Source: compiled by the author according of the survey analysis

From Table 4, in the context of the heritage site conservation, the study found that 94.7 % of the manager respondents agreed that it was very important to protect the cultural heritage from unplanned development regardless of the cost.

This finding has shown that there was awareness of the stakeholders in preserving their heritage. Interviews done by the researcher of this study confirmed that the government at various levels has been providing policy support and certain financial assistance to help the local people in conserving their heritage property. However, the study found that 84.3 % of the managers agreed that the funding provided was insufficient for its heritage site conservation and management.

With regards to the role played by the government in introducing the income generating scheme for the conservation, the study found that 78.9 % of the respondents stated that there was no programme, scheme or project introduced by the managing bodies in order to generate income for the conservation of Syrian cultural heritage and its management. Only 21.1 % of the manager respondents reported that the managing bodies had introduced a generating income programme or scheme for the Syrian cultural heritage conservation. Based on this finding, it appears that the managing bodies have not been able to produce any satisfactory programme, scheme or project in order to help generate income for the Syrian cultural heritage conservation.

Table 4

Knowledge and opinions of the managing bodies

Variable
()
(%)
The duty to protect and conserve the cultural heritage
No
Yes
Total
1
18
19
5.3
94.7
100.0
Sufficient funding support
No
Yes
Total
16
3
19
84.3
15.7
100.0
Generating income
No
Yes
Total
15
4
19
78.9
21.1
100.0
Source: compiled by the author according of the survey analysis

3. Discussion of Research Result

Table 5 shows the results of the correlation analysis between the local community's views on the socio- economic management of the Syrian cultural heritage sites. Therefore, the non-directional hypothesis of: “Is there any statistically significant relationship between the local community's views on the socio-economic management of the Syrian cultural heritage sites?”. It was answered and rejected. This was because the value of p = 0.139 was found to be bigger than α = 0.05.

Table 5

Is there any statistically significant relationship between the local community's views on the socio-economic management of the Syrian cultural heritage sites?

Variable
Management of the socio-economic development of the Syrian territory
Highest management of the socio-economic development of the Syrian territory with the objects of cultural heritage
Socio- economic management of the Syrian cultural heritage sites
Pearson’s Correlation
.141*
.136*
Sig. (2-tailed)
.139
.993
N
291
291
*Correlation is significant at the 0.05 level (2-tailed)

Source: compiled by the author according of the SPSS analysis

The results show that the management of social and economic development of cultural heritage sites has not effective, therefore requires improvements in management system through the government in the future. To the success of the management plan should to local community and stakeholders’ involvement in management plan; that local involvement would be very significant to ensure that the locals would obtain the long-term benefits of the Syrian cultural heritage conservation projects. In addition, could encourage the collaboration between the stakeholders in terms of marketing the world heritage sites together or managing the tourism flow which could have an impact on the local community thus benefitting and promote intra-generational equity. Moreover, the strategic planning in marketing with a long-term focus was found to be important to promote inter-generational equity. Strategic planning could require well-planned distribution strategies which could link heritage resources to selected groups of consumers who were predisposed to genuine interest in the host community. Moreover, long-term planning could help develop an idea so that the physical condition and viability of the heritage resources could be protected.

The study found that (81.2 %) they should to develop sponsoring and co-planning relationship with community groups, Moreover, 81.2 % of the managers said that they should initiate educational programs or a repository to access data, or both, so that groups or individuals could obtain timely, accurate facts that could enable them to have a significant influence in decision-making. They also stated that the managers should define a management process early in order that potential stakeholders could make a decision to participate and to what degree so as to ensure that every member of the revitalization team could understand the task through planned meetings that could be accessible and accommodating. They should have public communication frequently on a regular basis during the revitalization process so as to be available to the public outside of community meetings and by assigning a direct contact for the programs or projects.

As shown in Table 6 the study found that the majority of the managers (68.7 %) would encourage the stakeholders to describe a reason for their contribution or be part of the revitalization of their community with 37.5 % of them stating that they could provide a facilitator who was aware and qualified in dealing with cross-cultural connections at all formal and informal public meetings as well as also should develop funding and co- planning relationship with community groups, ensuring them shared roles in developing agendas, setting of targets together with supplying guidance and outreach.

The study also found that 56.2 % of the managers stated that they should solicit individuals’ cooperation, particularly those directly impacted by the revitalization project such as the minority and low-income communities. Managers should provide timely and frequent notices of public meetings through the local media or flyers and also by identifying the sources where the interested community members could be able to get more information.

Table 6

Involvement of local community in socio-economic development with cultural heritage sites

Variable
Managers (16)
()
(%)
Solicit individuals, especially those directly impacted by the revitalization project such as minority and low-income communities
9
56.2
Establish educational programs or a repository to access data, or both, so that groups or individuals can obtain timely, accurate information that enables them to have a meaningful influence in decision making
13
81.2
Encourage stakeholders to define a purpose for their participation or be part of the revitalization of their community
11
68.7
Define the decision-making process early, so that potential stakeholders can decide to participate and to what degree
8
50
Provide a facilitator who is sensitive and trained in dealing with cross-cultural exchanges at all formal and informal public meetings
6
37.5
Provide timely and frequent announcements of public meetings through local media/flyers and also by identifying the sources where interested community members can get more information
12
75
Develop sponsoring and co-planning relationship with community groups, ensuring them shared roles in developing agendas, setting of goals, and providing leadership and outreach
13
81.2
Make sure that every member of the revitalization team understands the project
9
56.2
Others, please specify
0
0
Source: compiled by the author according of the survey analysis

They all also completely agreed that they should find a balance between the community and tourism. However, 100 % of the managers believed that they should preserve and protect of the environmental resources and find a fit between the cultural heritage and economic development. The study found that 85.7 % of the managers believed that they should focus on authenticity and quality of the resources (see Table 7). While 857 % of them agreed that they should collaborate. And 57.1 of them agreed that make sites come alive. As well as establish collaboration between stakeholders in terms of marketing the world heritage sites together or managing the tourism flow which could have an impact on the local community thus benefitting and promoting intra-generational equity.

Table 7

Strategic planning of socio-economic development with cultural heritage sites

Variable
Managers (7)
()
(%)
Focus on authenticity and quality
6
85.7
Find a fit between the cultural heritage and economic development
7
100
Find a fit between the community and tourism
7
100
Preserve and protect of the environmental resources
7
100
Make sites come alive
4
57.1
Preserve and protect resources
5
71.4
Collaborate
6
85.7
Others, please specify
0
0
Source: compiled by the author according of the survey analysis

4. Conclusion

Cultural heritage in Syria has been, recently, absent from the socio-economic growth and development projects despite its crucial importance to societies at national, regional, and local level. It is recognized that no socio-economic development can be without including culture heritage; cultural heritage is the identity of a place; it links localities and economies to their past and shapes their future.

Although there is a variety of types of values which can be attached to cultural heritage, returning benefits to society by creating economic and social values is, in our opinion, one of the most responsible, and sustainable in the long term. The primal purpose of public involvement in heritage projects is to make social benefits for those who involved by offering opportunities to build social capital and improve quality of life through sharing experience of cultural heritage management. Moreover, requires public policy makers to justify project selection not as the construction of a wish list of projects, but as a comprehensive local socio- economic development strategy that includes projects that create synergies between them and reinforce the local economy.

The Syrian government should to face the challenge is the successful integration of the use of cultural heritage in the economic and social environment with an effective change management framework, where the successful integration of cultural heritage into the economic development strategy has a strong positive impact at local and national level.


Источники:

1. Alghafri M. Cultural heritage management as a factor in the socio-economic development of territories \\ M. Alghafri, Materials International Scientific and Practical Conference "Actual Issues of Economics and Management", April, St. Petersburg. 2019. p.3-8.
2. Alghafri M. The effect of cultural heritage in local economic development (for example, Syria) \\ M. Alghafri, Economics and society. 2019. 2 (57). p. 3-9.
3. Alghafri, M. Cultural heritage and sustainable tourism development in Syria \\ M. Alghafri, Materials VII International Scientific and Practical Conference "Economic Science and Practice", Krasnodar, February. 2019. p. 42-45.
4. Cohen J. Statistical Power Analysis for the Behavioral Sciences. Hillsdale: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. 1988; 11- 12.
5. Murzyn, K. M. Cultural, economic and social sustainability of heritage tourism: issues and challenges // M. Murzyn-Kupisz, Economic and Environmental Studies. Vol. 12, No.2 (22/2012), 2012. p. 113-133.
6. Petr, C. How heritage site tourists may become monument visitors / C. Petr // Tourism Management. – 2015. – Vol. 51. – P. 247– 262.
7. Sofia, F.F. Jacob, L.M.The effects of cultural heritage on residential property values: Evidence from Lisbon, Portugal // F.F. Sofia, L.M. Jacob, Regional Science and Urban Economics. 2018. Vol. 70. P. 35-56.
8. Towse, R. Handbook of cultural economics / R. Towse, R 2nd edition. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. 2013.p. 86.
9. Tuan, T. H., & Navrud, S. Capturing the Benefits of Preserving Cultural Heritage//T.H. Tuan, S. Navrud, Journal of Cultural Heritage, 2008. 9, p. 326-337.
10. UNESCO, ICCROM, ICOMOS, IUCN. Managing Cultural World Heritage / UNESCO, ICCROM, ICOMOS, IUCN. – Paris, 2013. – p.64 –80- 81.
11. UNESCO. Convention Concerning The Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. Adopted by the General Conference at its seventeenth session, Paris, 16 November 1972.
12. UNESCO. Measuring the economic contribution of cultural industries a review and assessment of current methodological approaches / UNESCO. UNESCO Institute for Statistics, Canada, 2009. p. 80- 84.
13. Алгафри М. А. Культурное наследие в Сирии как ресурс местного экономического развития // Вопросы экономики и управления. — 2019. — №3 (19) — С. 1- 5.
14. Алгафри М. А. культурное наследие и туризм в сирии как направления регионального экономического развити // Московский экономический журнал. 2018. № 4. С. 553- 546.
15. Алгафри М. А. Управление культурным наследием и развитие туризма в сирийской арабской республики // Форум молодых ученых. —2019. — № 2 (30) — С. 3- 9.
16. Алгафри М. А. Эффект объектов культурного наследия в местном экономическом развитии (на примере сирии) // Экономика и социум. —2019. — № 2 (57) — С. 3- 9.
17. Алгафри М. А., Мохаммад М. А. Методология оценки проектов культурного наследия в Сирии // Мировая наука. —2019. — № 2 (23) — С.88-94.
18. Векленко В.И., Алгафри М.А., Мохаммад М.А. теоретические основы управления социально-экономическим развитием территорий с объектами культурного наследия // Креативная экономика. — 2019. — Том 13. — № 6. — 1215- 1234.
19. Соколова А.С. Методологические проблемы исследования культурного наследия (Рецензирована) // журнал Вестник Адыгейского государственного университета. 2013. — с. 1-6.
20. Федорова У.А. Совершенствование системы организационно-экономического моделирования управления развитием культурно-познавательного туризма на объектах культурного наследия юнеско // журнал Проблемы современной экономики. 2012. — С. 372-374.
21. Чернявский А. С. Управление сохранением и развитием объектов недвижимости культурного наследия. диссертации на соискание ученой степени доктора экономических наук. Москва. 2011.— С. 95.
22. Шароварина М.А. Управление объектами культурного наследия // журнал Академический вестник УралНИИпроект РААСН. 2012.— Сер. 2.— С. 98- 100.
23. Шульгин П. М. Историко-культурное наследие как особый ресурс региона и фактор его социально-экономического развития // Мир России. 2004. — № 1. — С.115- 133.

Страница обновлена: 17.09.2020 в 11:35:29