- Development — Restitution — Conciliation — Mediation — Negotiations and consultation
This chapter studies dispute resolution mechanisms and their efficacy for resolving international disputes involving cultural heritage items. Many controversies concern the restitution of movable cultural objects lost during war, occupation, or colonization or following theft or illicit trade in peacetime. With artworks often found outside their country of origin, these cases are cross-border, involving more than one legal system and/or entities established or residing in different jurisdictions. Moreover, international disputes have arisen regarding immovable cultural heritage and its protection, not only in warlike situations and intentional attacks but also in non-violent processes such as realization of development projects. Various cases also concern management and access to built heritage. By consequence, international cultural heritage disputes can be settled through non-judicial procedures—negotiation, mediation, conciliation, or arbitration—commonly referred to as ‘Alternative Dispute Resolution’ (ADR) means; or, if these fail or are not available, through litigation before domestic courts or international tribunals.
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