Days of Heated Argument with the Unforgettable Stuart Smith～A Cross-Cultural Encounter with Familiar 19th-Century Industrial Heritage～
World Heritage Consultant
Barry Gamble is an international World Heritage consultant with a special interest in industrial sites. He has been involved as an independent advisor in World Heritage for 25 years, the past 15 years of which has seen an increasing direct involvement with the preparation of five World Heritage nominations in Europe and Japan. He has also worked in Mexico, the Caribbean, South Africa, Australia and New Zealand, and advice is currently being provided on three further nominations. He is a member of both ICOMOS and TICCIH.
――Mr. Barry Gamble, in your role as a World Heritage consultant, you devoted considerable effort to achieving the inscription of the Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution onto UNESCO World Heritage list. Could you start by telling us a little about your background?
Mr. Gamble: My background is in geology and geography, and after working in industries in these fields, I began working in World Heritage interpretation in 1995 through my position as a lecturer at the University of Plymouth in the UK. In 2003, I got involved in activities aiming to get Britain’s Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage list, which we accomplished in 2006.
After that, I began working in World Heritage around the world in places like Australia, Mexico, South Africa, and New Zealand, and got involved with the Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution in 2006. I’ve been making use of my geology and geography expertise now for roughly twenty-five years, and continue to work primarily as an advisor for achieving World Heritage registration.
――What sorts of things are your areas of specialty as a World Heritage consultant? And haven’t you ever worked in-house for UNESCO or ICOMOS?
Mr. Gamble: In terms of a field of expertise, I specialize exactly in industrial heritage. That said, when it comes to World Heritage registration my consulting activities focus on the process of how to go about accomplishing registration. I’m a member of ICOMOS, but haven’t ever worked as an employee of either UNESCO or ICOMOS. I just consult directly with governments, local municipalities, and other administrative bodies in various countries that have World Heritage sites as an independent freelance consultant.
――Had you had any prior involvement with Koko Kato, the managing director of the Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution Project, before you became involved with the project in 2006?
Mr. Gamble: No, I hadn’t. I became involved in the project through the late Stuart Smith, who was instrumental in getting these sites inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage list. That was the first time I met Koko. Stuart and I had been working together on survey research for the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape since the early ‘90s, and I think it was in 1999 that we launched a project together to try to get the area inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage list. Then, in 2005, with Stuart’s help, I drafted a letter of recommendation for Cornwall’s heritage landscapes and submitted it to UNESCO, and we finally got the area successfully inscribed onto the UNESCO World Heritage list in June 2006.
――That would mean that after your major success with the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape, you barely rested at all before starting to work on the Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution. Is that right?
Mr. Gamble: That’s right. I first came to Japan in November 2006, only five months later. And there was a reason for that. Namely, the Cornwall and West Devon Mining Landscape was inscribed onto the World Heritage list using a serial nomination approach. Based on our experience, Stuart and I, in discussing the matter from various angles, had drawn the conclusion that Japan’s industrial revolutionary heritage, being a large-scale undertaking with components distribute over a wide area, just like Cornwall, was therefore eminently suited to a serial nomination approach like the one we had pursued in Cornwall.
As I said, Stuart and I were longtime colleagues and very close friends, so we thought that our experience in Cornwall would be usefully applied in Japan as well. And that’s the reason that I’m here today!
Archaeologist and Heritage Conservation Specialist
A fellow of the Japan Federation of Engineering Societies
Team Member of the Industrial Project Team Office for the Promotion of World Heritage Listing under Cabinet Secretariat
Governor of Kagoshima Prefecture
Mayor of Hagi City
Mayor of Uki City, Kumamoto Prefecture
The Former Employee of Nippon Steel Corporation
An Associate Professor of the Faculty of Science and Engineering in Iwate University
Chairman of the Tourist Guide Association of Misumi West Port
President of Kuraya Narusawa Co., Ltd.
Chairman of Izunokuni City Tourism Association
Director and General Manager of Gunkanjima Concierge
Producer of the Gunkanjima Digital Museum
Owner at Tōge Chaya
Chairman: Mr. Hidenori Date
President: Mr. Masahiro Date
Proprietor, Houraikan Inn
Representative Director of Egawa Bunko non-profit incorporated foundation
The 42nd head of the Egawa Family
Democratic Party for the People (DPP) Representative for Nagasaki Prefecture
President of the NPO, Way to World Heritage Gunkanjima
MI Consulting Group
President of Watanabe Production Group and Honorary Chair of Watanabe Productions Co., Ltd.
Member of the House of Councillors
World Heritage Consultant
Director and Dean, The Kyushu-Asia Institute of Leadership
Representative Director, SUMIDA, Inc.
Journalist, founder of the Shimomura Mitsuko Ikikata Juku School
Representative, Rally Nippon
Chairman, Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution World Heritage Route Promotion Council Director, National Congress of Industrial Heritage
Representative Director, General Incorporated Foundation National Congress of Industrial Heritage (Advisor, Public Interest Incorporated Foundation Capital Markets Research Institute）
Mayor of Nagasaki City
Policy Director at Heritage Montreal
World Heritage Consultant
Executive Director of Kogakuin University
Heritage Architect and International Consultant
Head of Data Acquisition at The Glasgow School of Art’s School of Simulation and Visualisation
Head of Industrial Heritage, Historic Environment Scotland, Edinburgh
Scottish Ten Project Manager, Historic Environment Scotland, Edinburgh
Mayor of Izunokuni City, Shizuoka Prefecture
Pro-Provost and Chairman of Council of the Royal College of Art. Heritage advisor of Canal & River Trust for England and Wales.
Dean of Tokyo Rissho Junior College
Professor emeritus of Keio University
Mayor of Kitakyushu City
At the 39th session of the World Heritage Committee convened in Bonn, Germany, from June 28 to July 8, 2015, the decision was approved to inscribe the Sites of Japan’s Meiji Industrial Revolution on the World Heritage list.
At a celebratory party held to mark the occasion, some of the primary promoters of the project spoke of their joy in achieving their goal and of the trials and tribulations to getting there.
Director and Managing Executive Officer, Hanshin Expressway Company Limited
Member, Board of Directors, National Congress of Industrial Heritage
Vice-Governor of Shizuoka Prefecture
Mayor of Hagi City
Chairman, Tokyo Metro Co., Ltd.
Mayor of Omuta City
Deputy Director-General, Lifelong Learning Policy Bureau, MEXT
Former Counsellor, Cabinet Secretariat
Mayor of Kamaishi City
Member, Board of Directors, National Congress of Industrial Heritage Counselor, Shimadzu Limited
Chairman of the Consortium for the World Heritage Inscription of Modern Industrial Heritage (Kyushu-Yamaguchi) and governor of Kagoshima Prefecture (as of 2015)