Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/143546
Title: World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia: Patrimonialism and Exploitation
Authors: Lau Jia Wen
Issue Date: 6-Apr-2018
Citation: Lau Jia Wen (2018-04-06). World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia: Patrimonialism and Exploitation. ScholarBank@NUS Repository.
Abstract: This thesis aims to examine why several cultural World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia face degradation after being nominated by the UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation), while others do not. Primarily, it examines bureaucrats’ values and motivations for nominating World Heritage Sites, and the main parties who benefit from and bear the costs of World Heritage inscription. In doing so, this thesis identifies how a nation-state’s inherent political culture influences both the outcomes of site preservation efforts and the management of tourism activities associated with the World Heritage Site. This thesis contends that World Heritage Sites are frequently exploited as tourism enterprises by corrupt bureaucrats within developing nation-states for personal economic gains. To test this hypothesis, I will first analyse two sites: Borobudur, a World Heritage Site in Indonesia; and Bagan, a pending World Heritage Site in Myanmar. Both case studies represent sites that display signs of physical degradation, which are found in developing nation-states that exhibit similar political symptoms – existence of patrimonialism before the colonial powers ruled, and resurfacing during the post-colonial period. The third site to be analysed, the Singapore Botanic Gardens, provides a contrasting case study. The People’s Action Party has taken a determined stance against corruption since Singapore gained independence, and its World Heritage Site has been well preserved. Thus, by identifying distinct political contexts and modes of Southeast Asian nation-states, this thesis relates different experiences of World Heritage Sites in Southeast Asia to political variables.
URI: http://scholarbank.nus.edu.sg/handle/10635/143546
Appears in Collections:Bachelor's Theses (Restricted)

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