Re-Creating Local Building Technology as a Way for Conserving Intangible Cultural Heritage


  • Özlem Karakul


Traditional Craftsmanship, Local Building Technology, Master­ - Apprentice Relations, Transmission, Conservation


Historic built environrnents have been produced by the dominant activity of local builders. Traditional building technology is the product of the builder's knowledge and creativity in using local building materials, handling environrnental features and the needs of local people. The experience and the knowledge of local builders, expressed itself in the building technology, have been transmitted from generation to generation in a master-apprentice relationship, guaranteeing the transmission process of cultural expressions in the local building tradition for centuries. This tradition has also provided identity, continuity and harmony in the architectural language of environrnents. Today, together with the interruption in using local building ways, various conservation problems related to the sustainability of building culture have emerged in traditional fabrics. This study mainly discusses to re-create local building technologies both as a way for their documentation and conservation as intangible cultural heritage today.
Traditional craftsmanship embodied on the architecture of historic environrnents and the activity of local builders as the creators of local building technologies represents one aspect of the intangible heritage as identified in the UNESCO 2003 Convention. UNESCO Living Human Treasures System was designed for organizing the bearers of intangible heritage and transmitting their knowledge and skills to next generations. Critically explaining the national living human treasures systems of different countries, the study tries to conclude the appropriate principles for the conservation of the activity of local builders in the national living hum an treasures system of Turkey and to seek for organizing local builders and documenting their knowledge and providing their transmission for future generations.


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How to Cite

Karakul, Özlem. (2012). Re-Creating Local Building Technology as a Way for Conserving Intangible Cultural Heritage. ICONARCH International Congress of Architecture and Planning, (ICONARCH-1, Proceeding Book), 487–496. Retrieved from



New Technologies for Cultural Heritage