New Heritage and Sustainable Development Online Platform Launched

Connecting American Historic Preservation Practitioners to the UN sustainable development goals, Habitat 3 and the New Urban Agenda

US/ICOMOS is pleased to announce the launch of the Heritage and Sustainable Development Knowledge Community or @usicomos_sd for short. Heritage and Sustainable Development is a joint project of US/ICOMOS, the US members of the ICOMOS International committee on Economics of Conservation (ISCEC) and the firm Heritage Strategies International (HSI), made possible with the support of the US National Park Service. The goal of @usicomos_sd is to use web and social media-based tools to organize US practitioners around sharing international knowledge on heritage and sustainable development.
The launch of @usicomos_sd comes at a critical juncture, just after the adoption by the UN General Assembly of the new global Sustainable Developments Goals (SDGs) and just before the monumental Habitat 3 meeting in October.  The Habitat 3 meeting is expected to create a New Urban Agenda for our times – a roadmap reflecting a global consensus on the path to sustainable cities and towns in the 21st century.  As its first focus, @usicomos_sd aims to connect the community revitalization, rightsizing cities and affordable housing work being done by US historic preservationists to this global process.  Our work will parallel related US/ICOMOS projects touching on climate change and disaster risk reduction – two more important pillars of the global post-2015 development process.
Heritage and Sustainable Development subscribers will receive notifications when new international sustainable development content is added to the @usicomos_sd Knowledge Community home page.  It also offers a new twitter feed, @usicomos_sd, an events calendar and more.   These tools are designed to build collaboration, breakdown cost and time barriers to international exchange, harness new technologies and leverage traditional face-to-face exchange programs.
Heritage & Sustainable Development is one of six Knowledge Communities US/ICOMOS is a launching as part of its KnowledgeExchange initiative.   KnowledgeExchange uses web and social media-based tools to leverage existing programs like the ICOMOS network of scientific committees. The goal is to equip a wider circle of US preservationists with more international tools that will help them help solve the challenges their communities face, while showcasing innovation in US historic preservation for an international audience. Learn more by visiting
@usicomos_sd is an open source platform and any user may subscribe by visiting

Learn more about the sponsors of the Heritage & Sustainable Development Knowledge Community

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Donovan Rypkema is President of Heritage Strategies International. HSI was established in 2004 as a companion firm to PlaceEconomics, a consulting firm of which Rypkema is the principal. PlaceEconomics – widely recognized as the industry leader in the economics of historic preservation – specializes in services to public and NGO clients who are dealing with center city and neighborhood commercial district revitalization and the reuse of heritage structures. Rypkema has worked with communities in 49 States and seven Canadian Provinces. HSI was formed to extend internationally the services that have been provided primarily in North America over the past 30 years.

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The US National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (US/ICOMOS) is part of the worldwide ICOMOS network of people, institutions, government agencies, and private corporations who support the conservation of the world’s heritage. Since its founding in 1965, the mission of US/ICOMOS has been to deliver the best of international heritage conservation scholarship and work to the US domestic historic preservation dialogue while helping to share and interpret for the world the unique US system of historic preservation.

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The US National Committee of the ICOMOS International committee on Economics of Conservation (ISCEC)  consists of the US/ICOMOS members who serve on ISCEC.  The major task of the ISCEC is to analyze and improve the state of the art of the Economics of Conservation of Cultural Heritage, so as to develop new guidelines and suggestions for sustainable integrated conservation plans, programs and projects. Cultural heritage has an increasing role in urban sustainable development strategies: sustainability, creativity and cultural heritage are considered to be strictly linked. The Committee collects examples of best practices for integrated conservation in view of developing a specific database for improving tools and approaches from a multidimensional perspective.

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