Chpt#4: Building Sustainable Communities Using Cultural Heritage Resources: Community-Based Cultural Heritage Resources Management (COBACHREM)


The precautionary principle of sustainable development requires that conservation measures be developed prior to destruction of a resource. Development of a community-based cultural heritage resources management (COBACHREM) model aims to provide a point of departure for African cultural conservation, whereby production and consumption indicators of cultural heritage resources conservation are identified and isolated for montoring purposes. A focus on community is important because it is at grassroots level where people apply their socio-cultural and psycho-social behaviours and processes to interact with environments. People use their socio-cultural understanding of phenomena to interact with the environment. These characteristics make cultural values ubiquitous in all people-accessed and people-inhabited geographic spaces thus making people readily available assets and mediums through which environmental sustainability can be implemented.
•Sustainable communities • rural development  •COBACHREM  •Sustainable development •Cultural competence •Cultural knowledge • Cultural indicators • CBNRM
At national policy level of countries southern African countries, a COBACHREM
model will cancel out the tendency to apply incompatible models to manage cultural
resources. For example, in southern Africa the natural resources model called
community- based natural resources management (CBNRM) programme is commonly
used for this purpose. The consequence of applying an incompatible management
model is that management programmes for natural resources are applied
by default on cultural resources, a practice that is not sustainable. The section that
follows problematises application of CBNRM programme in managing cultural
resources and outlines features that render CBNRM programme incompatible for
cultural and heritage resources. – pg 91
Table 4.1 Selected salient differences between CBNRM and COBACHREM

4.1.2 The Problem with CBNRM for Cultural and Heritage: The Need for COBACHREM

A community-based natural resources management (CBNRM) programme was
introduced in southern Africa in the 1990s. Its application have been interrogated
and discussed by various scholars from a point of departure of natural resources…

About this chapter

TitleTowards Sustainable Communities: Community-Based Cultural Heritage Resources Management (COBACHREM) Model
Author:Susan Osireditse Keitumetse
Sequence number4         Chapter numberChapter 4


Dr Susan O. Keitumetse competed for and won two separate Commonwealth scholarships both to University of Cambridge, UK , where she pursued MPhil (Archaeological Heritage Management and Museums) and later on PhD (African cultural heritage and Sustainable Development). Before she had obtained a BA degree (Archaeology and Environmental Sciences) and Post Graduate Diploma in Education (Geography and History) from the University of Botswana. During her post-graduate studies, she combined both environmental science and archaeology disciplines to venture into the broader cultural and heritage management studies with a particular focus on sustainable development and cultural heritage management at the department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge. With a view to catalyze a linkage between environment and cultural heritage in Africa, Dr Keitumetse conducted various researches and published works that illustrate the relevance of cultural and heritage resources for the broader environmental conservation. She works at the University of Botswana’s Okavango Research Institute as a researcher in cultural heritage and tourism where she undertakes applied research in areas such as the Okavango inland Delta World Heritage Site and Kalahari areas. Of particular note is her developing conservation model of Community-Based Cultural Heritage Resources Management (COBACHREM) to guide local communities and practitioners’ initiatives towards sustainable use of cultural heritage resources for social development. Dr Keitumetse is an associate editor of the journal Environment, Development, and Sustainability published by Springer. She also sits in the editorial board of the international journal of community archaeology and heritage, published by Taylor and Francis, as well as the International Journal of Heritage and Sustainable Development published by Green Lines Institute, Portugal. Dr Keitumetse has both national and international experience from across the world. She has won academic grants for research fellowships in international institutions that include; the Rockefeller Fellowship at the Smithsonian Institution, Washington DC, USA; the Watson Scholar Fellowship at Brown University in Rhode Island, USA and the Wenner-Gren Foundation research grant for research on ‘historical archaeology of marginal landscapes of eastern Botswana’. Outside academia and in international development Dr Keitumetse has worked and continues to work with institutions such as UNESCO as an expert advisor, examiner, facilitator, and consultant within the intangible cultural heritage section. She has corporate governance experience from African government parastatal institution dealing with environment, heritage, tourism and land use planning. These are derived from her tenure as a board director of Botswana Tourism Organisation for six years, where she also chaired a quality assurance committee of the board dealing with grading and certifying tourism accommodation. Her overall research interests are in the areas of sustainable development and cultural heritage conservation; historical archaeology; community heritage management; communal cultural identities; heritage tourism; heritage and protected areas; international management of cultural heritage; amongst others. Dr Susan Keitumetse has published extensively in the field of cultural heritage conservation and management in Africa, Her works comprise of peer-reviewed articles in international journals; peer-reviewed book chapters; refereed conference proceedings; and technical reports in international periodicals, magazines and newspapers. These can be accessed through search engines such as Google Scholar and LinkedIn. *********************************************************************************************

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