The Importance of Empowering Local Community in Preserving Underwater Cultural Heritage in Indonesia:
Case Study in Tulamben, Bali and in Taka Kappala, Selayar-South Sulawesi

Dublin Core


The Importance of Empowering Local Community in Preserving Underwater Cultural Heritage in Indonesia:
Case Study in Tulamben, Bali and in Taka Kappala, Selayar-South Sulawesi


Session 6
Empowerment and relevance in maritime and underwater cultural heritage programs in developing countries


Indonesia has a great potential for underwater cultural heritage (UCH) but the challenge to its preservation management is also very high. Coordination among stakeholders is very important. The effort to use UCH must be aligned with the effort to preserve so that it can be sustainable for the next generations. Some problems that we are facing, namely: no optimal management; lack of awareness of people; lack of science and technology application; and no proper law enforcement. With the rapid advancement of marine technology, UCH has become increasingly easy to reach by treasures hunters such as salvage companies and local community. Many UCH in Indonesia became the victim of massive looting such as that undertaken by the local community in Taka Kappala Waters, Selayar Regency South Sulawesi Province. Marine archaeological researches in 2008 and 2009 showed the shipwreck was in a badly damaged condition due to the looting activity that has lasted almost two years. The people did not realize that the use of UCH if well-managed will improve living standards for people in the vicinity of the site. Unlike theft cases in Selayar, in Bali the local community gives high appreciation to the existence of a shipwreck site in their area. They realized that shipwrecks are one of the potential marine resources which can be exploited for marine tourism. Liberty wreck in Tulamben, Bali has become a world-class tourist destination for divers. The local people have been protecting it with the customary law they made and obeyed, i.e. with a restriction on fishing activity around the shipwreck site. So then this site is very well maintained and became a central area for growth of marine life. Liberty wreck location is an example of a very beautiful blend and harmony among the remains of ancient human objects, very rich marine life, and a very high local community appreciation.


Nia Naelul Hasanah Ridwan


November 2011



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