China’s Cul­tural Her­itage and Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Spe­cial Fund is putting Chi­nese cul­ture on an in­ter­na­tional stage.

Forbes - - Conversation -

China’s vast land is home to 56 dif­fer­ent eth­nic groups, each with its own his­tory and cul­ture. In 1988, China’s Min­istry of Cul­ture launched the Na­tion­al­ity Cul­ture Foundation ( NCF) to pro­tect and re­vive many of th­ese cul­tures to en­sure they are passed on to fu­ture gen­er­a­tions, as well as to pro­mote them to other com­mu­ni­ties.

In 2003, Nan­jing Univer­sity— one of China’s old­est and most pres­ti­gious uni­ver­si­ties— es­tab­lished the Nat­u­ral Her­itage In­sti­tute. Nan­jing Univer­sity, which dates back nearly 2,000 years, has long been fa­mous for its schol­ar­ship and re­search. Re­searchers work­ing in fields in­clud­ing so­ci­ol­ogy, ar­chae­ol­ogy, his­tory, law, ar­chi­tec­ture, ur­ban plan­ning and the arts cre­ated the in­sti­tute to re­search the coun­try’s so­cial de­vel­op­ment through his­tory and cul­ture. They have worked on more than 120 projects in re­gions around China, re­search­ing and doc­u­ment­ing the di­ver­sity of China’s her­itage.

A decade later, in 2013, the Min­istry of Cul­ture’s Na­tional Cul­ture Foundation part­nered with Nan­jing Univer­sity’s Nat­u­ral Her­itage In­sti­tute to cre­ate a new body called the Cul­tural Her­itage and Sus­tain­able De­vel­op­ment Fund (CHSDF).

The Fund was launched that De­cem­ber at the Na­tional Mu­seum of China in Bei­jing, where global cul­tural lead­ers, me­dia and ar tists came to­gether un­der the theme of “Cul­ture Her­itage and Recre­ation—the Re­birth of East­ern and Western Fash­ion.”

The CHSDF is charged with car­ry­ing out her­itage con­ser­va­tion in China, in­clud­ing cul­tural, nat­u­ral, reli­gious and in­dus­trial her­itage; tra­di­tional cul­ture; mod­ern art and cre­ative de­sign; and mu­seum de­vel­op­ment.

Pro­tect­ing and Mod­ern­iz­ing Chi­nese Her­itage

The aim of the Fund is not just to pro­tect Chi­nese tra­di­tional her­itage, but also to ac­tively pro­mote and re­vive art and cul­ture, help­ing them to flour­ish in the mod­ern age.

The CHSDF acts as a bridge be­tween Chi­nese de­sign­ers and in­ter­na­tional brands for de­vel­op­ment and col­lab­o­ra­tion. It also fa­cil­i­tates con­nec­tions be­tween in­ter­na­tional de­sign­ers and Chi­nees ar­ti­sans, and pro­mote aware­ness of their brands in China. This is done by pro­vid­ing gov­ern­ment sup­por t, mak­ing in­tro­duc­tions to

Chi­nese tal­ent, en­gag­ing the me­dia and of­fer­ing chan­nels for copy­right pro­tec­tion.

“China is an an­cient civ­i­liza­tion with a long his­tory and a di­verse range of cul­tural her­itage,” ex­plains Kang Ji­aqi, ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor of the CHSDF. “As a de­vel­op­ing

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