We are delighted to share our recent participation in the Yangtze Culture Forum, an inspiring event held at the Yangtze River International Conference Center in Nanjing, China, from November 24th to 25th. The 2023 Yangtze River Culture Nanjing Forum was co-organized by UNESCO, Xinhua News Agency, the Publicity Department of CPC Committee of Jiangsu Province, and the Nanjing Municipal People's Government.
With the theme 'Flowing Rivers, Converging Future', the forum provided a platform to celebrate the vital role of rivers in safeguarding cultural heritage and memories. More information about the event and its rich programme can be found here.
The Forum closed with a final Declaration downloadable here.
Bringing together minds from across the globe, the Yangtze Culture Forum focused on fostering discussions about river cultures, ecosystems, and economies with an emphasis on sustainable development. A special mention was made of the enduring friendship between Nanjing and St. Louis, sister cities along the Yangtze and Mississippi Rivers.
Our Executive Director, Eriberto Eulisse, delivered one of the forum’s four keynotes, alongside Prof. Shahbaz Khan, Director of the UNESCO Multisectoral Regional Office for East Asia, Tang Hongwu, Scholar of the Chinese Academy of Engineering and Vice President of the Chinese Hydraulic Engineering Society, and Wang Wei, Member of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences. Eulisse's contribution, titled "Understanding Rivers through Museums: Regenerating Human Relationships with Water for a New Paradigm of Ecosystem Sustainability", delved into the importance of finding new ways to pass on water heritage traditions and knowledge to young generations. Catch a glimpse of Eriberto Eulisse's interview with the Yangtze Culture Forum’s organisers here as he shares his perspectives on the role of museums and heritage sites at the intersection of river culture, water heritage, and sustainable development.
In the same venue of the Yangtze Culture Forum, the National Water Museum of China (Hangzhou) in cooperation with the Nanjing Creative Center organised the exhibition 'We Flow' (download the poster here). The exhibition presented a captivating combination of works from 'The Water We Want' and 'I Remember Water', in addition to recordings of sounds and poems from various river contexts, which were collected for the occasion. The sound context was recreated thanks to contributions sent in by various members of the WAMU-NET network, including: the Freshwater Aquarium of Karlovacs, the River Navigation Museum of Battaglia Terme (Italy), the Posavje Musuem of Brezile (Slovenia), the Living Waters Museum (India), the Brazilian Water Museum (University of Tocantins), the Yellow River Museum of Zhengzhou, and the Baiheliang Underwater Museum of Chonqing, China.
Not least, the National Water Museum of China also organized in cooperation with the Hohai University of Nanjing the 2nd International Youth River Dialogue, titled 'Exploring Rivers as Living Entities'. This year's six young finalists, from Austria, Congo, Ghana, and China, animated a inspiring afternoon by presenting their works aimed at presenting a selected number of rivers: the Danube (Austria), Densu (Ghana), Congo (Rep. Of Congo), Tarim, Yangtze and Qiantang (China) rivers. The jury selected the most deserving presentation work, devceloped by Ebenezer Impriam Amponsah (Ghana), as the winner of the 2nd edition of the Youth River Dialogue. All six finalists were awarded the title of "River Messenger" by the National Water Museum of China, the Hohai University, and the Global Network of Water Museums.
(photo copyright © Hu Xiao)