Safeguarding cultural heritage: Law and policy in Fiji

Erika J. Techera*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

23 Citations (Scopus)


Cultural heritage has been recognised to be intrinsically, economically and environmentally valuable, yet it is under pressure from a range of processes and impacts. The threats to it have been acknowledged by the global community, national governments and local people alike. This has triggered action including a rapid expansion of international heritage law in the last decade, which has both catalysed and complemented national and local initiatives. Fiji is a nation with a rich history and cultural heritage, now facing similar contemporary challenges to many other states. It is also a country that has sought to develop law and policy to protect a broad range of its heritage. This includes ratification of key international heritage treaties, as well as national and local initiatives. This article examines the laws, policies and programs in the Fiji Islands, which are focused upon heritage protection. Particular attention is given to indigenous Fijian intangible cultural heritage. This paper highlights the strengths of the Fijian approach, identifies the legal and administrative challenges that remain and makes recommendations for the future. The experience of Fiji is not isolated and it provides a valuable case study, which may offer important lessons to other small island developing states in the region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)329-334
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of Cultural Heritage
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2011


  • Cultural heritage
  • Fiji
  • Heritage law
  • Intangible heritage
  • Legal governance
  • Pacific


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