Chapter 4 - Legislation and the General Registry of Cultural Interest Asset in Spain, 1985-2016
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Thomson Reuters Aranzadi
Manero Miguel, F.; García Cuesta, J. L. (Coords.) (2017): Territorial Heritage & Spatial Planning. A Geographical Perspective. Ed. Thomson Reuters. The Global Law Collection. Navarra. 327 págs. ISBN – 978-84-9152-762-6
With the exception of some pioneering, but incomplete, dispositions concerning Spain’s historical heritage approved in the 19th century, most of the legislation concerning this question was passed in the 20th century. Worth noting, among many other dispositions, is the Law of May 13th 1933 on the defence, conservation and growth of the national historic-artistic heritage and, in particular, the Law 16/1985, of June 25th, concerning Spain’s Historic Heritage. This latter law was to have an enormous transcendence, for at least three reasons: it grouped together a large part of the historical legislation; it included all Spain’s international commitments in this matter; and finally, it began a territorially decentralised stage in the recognition and protection of heritage assets, especially those denominated in Spain as BIC (Bien de Interés Cultural or Cultural Interest Asset). Since the approval of this law, the scientific literature on heritage and the legal provisions (laws and plans) created by the many administrations has, over the last three decades (1985-2015), undergone spectacular growth. This fact is closely linked to the transfer of competences to the regional governments which, through specific legislation on cultural or historical heritage, has allowed political singularity to be associated with some of the most relevant attributes of each particular territory, whether of a historical or heritage nature, or both. In addition, we have the incorporation of heritage to regional development strategies (Landel, 2009), for which the following is normally necessary: first, the creation of a territorial trademark based on the exceptionality of the heritage assets or the uses and customs of the said territory (Harvey 2001; Ivanc & Gomes 2015; Lorenzini et al. 2011; Smith 2006); this is followed by the construction of new infrastructures and facilities as instruments of territorial qualification and revitalization (Ciambrone 2013; Simeon & Martone 2014); finally comes the creation and sale of the original heritage, or its recreation, as a touristic resource (Ashworth 2003; Biernacka & Kocwin 2010; Gogolou & Dimopoulou 2015; Kirshenblatt 1998). As we shall analyse later, the recognition process of the assets upon which these strategies are based, the so-called BICs, attributed for the most part to the Autonomous Regions, has been decidedly irregular. What is true is that, in order to face the new challenges in taking advantage of heritage, the number of assets that have been declared of cultural interest has undergone spectacular growth. However, it is no less true that the number and location has no relation whatsoever to the history, tradition or heritage wealth of the territories, but to the opportunity or political need to highlight them.
5403.01 Geografía Cultural
Bienes de Interés Cultural
This activities are included in the objectives and results of the Research Project CSO2013-47205-P «Culture and heritage as territorial resources: sustainable development strategies and spatial impacts», from the State Programme to Encourage Scientific Technical Research of Excellence, Sub-programme of the Generation of Knowledge from the Ministry of Economy & Competitiveness, co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund. The coordinators are featured as Principal Investigators.
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