december 15, 2006
  WMF Watch List Nominations Due January 15

Summary: The World Monuments Fund is now accepting nominations to the 2008 World Monuments Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites, the deadline for submitting nominations to the list is January 15, 2007. The biennial Watch List is a call to action on behalf of threatened cultural-heritage sites worldwide. By bringing the sites to international attention, the list helps to raise the funds needed for their rescue and often spurs local governments and communities to take an active role in protecting cultural icons in their regions.

Results apparent
For many landmarks, inclusion on the Watch List is the best—and perhaps the only—chance for survival. Examples from the current list include:

  • The Blueridge Cultural Landscape in Kentucky: Saving Kentucky’s Bluegrass region became a hot political issue throughout the state and helped stop commercial rezoning in several towns.
  • Segovia Aqueduct in Spain: The listing of the Segovia Aqueduct brought all levels of government, the city, and American Express together to help fix the iconic monument.
  • Kidane-Mehret Church in Eritrea: The day after the announcement of the listing of several sites in Eritrea (a country most Americans couldn’t find on a map), a New York City investment banker of Eritrean descent called to offer funding that enabled WMF to repair the Kidane-Mehret Church, thus saving this rare example of Medieval Eritrean religious architecture from imminent collapse.

Selection process
An independent panel of experts selects watch sites from nominations submitted by governments, organizations, and individuals. Sites of all types and from all time periods—from ancient to modern—are eligible. They can be archaeological sites; residential, civic, commercial, military, or religious architecture; cultural landscapes; and townscapes. The 2006 list consisted of sites in 55 countries on all seven continents, including the entire country of Iraq, aboriginal rock art in Australia, an explorer’s hut in Antarctica, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s Ennis-Brown House in Los Angeles.

The 2008 Watch List panel will convene in May 2007, and WMF will announce the new list in June. For more information or to download nomination forms, visit the World Monuments Fund Web site.

news headlines
recent related
World Monuments Fund Releases Biennial Watch List of 100 Most Endangered Sites

View a PDF of the current Watch List sites.

1. Bluegrass country in Kentucky began a topic of heated political debate after it became a WMF Watch List site. Commercial development has subsequently slowed in the region.
2. Kidane-Mehret Church in Eritrea has become the recipient of major funding toward its critical repair.

Photos courtesy of WMF.