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OWHC Regional Secretariat North-West Europe and North America

 (C) Peter Ferstl, Stadt Regensburg


Within the OWHC network member cities are represented by their Mayors with the active participation of their heritage management specialists. The OWHC's headquarters are located in Québec City, which hosted the First International Symposium of World Heritage Cities in July 1991. There are seven Regional Secretariats support the work of the General Secretariat. Regensburg is part of the North-West European Region and leads this Secretariat.On the 21st of November 2011 the OWHC´s  Board of Directors decided to entrust the City of Regensburg with the management of the Regional Secretariat North West Europe. Regensburg had applied for the Secretariat during a preliminary meeting on September the 30th 2011. “Regensburg´s constant efforts to become Regional Secretariat are the result of the strong conviction, that there are more chances and opportunities in the working fields of the regional network than those taken so far”, explains Regensburg`s Mayor Hans Schaidinger.  

Detailed Application

Especially the detailed and strategic application lead to a broad acceptance among the region´s member cities. Various reasons were taken into account:  Regensburg always followed an integrated approach in all its networking activities to incorporate as many stakeholders as possible.


The primary objectives of the Organization are to favor the implementation of the World Heritage Convention, to encourage co-operation and the exchange of information and expertise on matters of conservation and management as well as to develop a sense of solidarity among its member cities. To this end, the OWHC organizes World Congresses, conferences, seminars and workshops dealing with the challenges to be met in the realm of management and strategies pertaining to the preservation and development of historic cities.


The Mayors of World Heritage cities that have paid their annual membership fees make up the General Assembly, the Organization’s paramount authority. The General Assembly has meets every two years. The Board of Directors is made up of eight Mayors elected by the General Assembly. It meets at least once a year.The General Secretariat is directed by the Secretary General, appointed by the General Assembly, who oversees the execution of mandates adopted by the members, the day-to-day administration of the Organization, personnel management and hiring.

Source:  OWHC