To be inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, a candidate site must prove its “Outstanding Universal Value” (O.U.V.), i.e. cultural importance that extends beyond national borders, which has existed for generations and deserves to be recognized on a worldwide scale.
UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) was founded in 1945 at the end of the Second World War, with the aim of building peace in the minds of men and women through education, science, culture and communications.
UNESCO is made up of 193 member states. Its main missions include reducing poverty, providing quality education for all, contributing to development or encouraging the protection of literary, artistic, monumental and cultural heritage.
Preamble to the UNESCO constitution
Since wars begin in the minds of men, it is in the minds of men that the defenses of peace must be built.
Since 1978, over 1,007 sites have been inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List, 41 of which are located in France. Other famous sites featured on the List include The Egyptian Pyramids, the Grand Canyon, the temples of Ankor and Mont Saint-Michel. Closer to home, in Burgundy, the Vézelay Hill and Basilica and the Fontenay Abbey are also inscribed.
Since 1992, winegrowing cultural landscapes have also been added to the List.