Liège, from 6 to 12 August 2017
Liège will host the World Humanities Conference from Sunday, 6 to Saturday, 12 August 2017.
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Liège, from 6 to 12 August 2017
Co-organized by UNESCO, the International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences (ICPHS) and LIEGETOGETHER.
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Latest News

09 Apr 2015

First working meeting

First working meeting at the Provincial Palace of Liege to establish the working methodology

04 Aug 2014

Mr. André GILLES speech, Provincial Deputy President

Delivered at the Provincial Palace of Liege

07 May 2014

Crystal Campus

Adama SAMASSEKOU was guest of honour at the Advanced Technical College of the Province of Liège for the “Campus de Cristal 2013” award ceremony on Tuesday, May 7


Liege will host the World Humanities Conference from Sunday, the 6th to Saturday, the 12th August 2017. Co-organized by UNESCO, the International Council for Philosophy and Human Sciences (CIPSH) and the World Humanities Conference – Liège 2017 Foundation, this congress will gather about 1800 participants from all over the world working in the fields of science, politics, art and communication, as well as representatives of international, governmental and non-governmental organizations.

The title of the conference is: - World Humanities Conference. Challenges and Responsibilities for a Planet in Transition; - Conférence Mondiale des Humanités. Défis et responsabilités pour une planète en transition.

Until the Second World War, the Humanities were at the heart of both public debate and the political arena. In recent years, their role has faded and they have been marginalized. It is crucial to stop their marginalization, restore them and impose their presence in the public sphere as well as in public policies. It is not about demonstrating that the humanities are ‘useful’, but to determine their scope and how they can contribute to resolving the main challenges of the third millennium.

Anthem of Humanity

Prior to the World Humanities Conference of August 2017, the 2016 campaign “Debout Citoyen!” (Stand up, Citizen!) led to the creation of an anthem by Rhonny Ventat, a famous Liégeois composer, saxophonist and “Ambassador of the Province of Liege”, to induce human reflection.

Rhonny Ventat describes the progress of his work as follows:

"The peoples have always complied with their conditions or have stood up for their rights and their life quality. The anthem describes this process. At the heart of this work, before the great final “gathering” of the peoples, a quotation appears to the song “Valeureux Liégeois” expressing the obvious connection to the Liégeois identity and its culture that opens up to others… In the course of the anthem, the instruments gather together in that unifying whole without differences and without frontiers, hoped for ever since the beginning of human history."



UNESCO wishes to revitalize the humanities through a global event where the most qualified representatives of the main disciplines will face the great challenges of our time.

The CIPSH, founded in 1949, is one of the non-governmental organizations established by UNESCO to assist it in its mission (like the ICOM, the ICOMOS, the ICSU, etc.). It comprises several scholarly federations:

- International Union of Academies (UAI) (= the international union of academies for humanities and social sciences); - International Union of History and Philosophy of Science / Division of History of Science and Technology (IUHPS / DHST); - International Union of History and Philosophy of Science / Division of Logic, Methodology and Philosophy of Science and Technology (IUHPS / DLMPS); - International Association for the History of Religions (IAHR); - International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences (IUAES); - International Union of Prehistoric and the Protohistoric Sciences (UISPP); - International Federation of Associations of Classical Studies (FIEC); - International Federation for Modern Languages and Literatures (FILLM); - International Federation of Philosophical Societies (FISP); - Permanent International Committee of Linguists (CIPL); - International Committee of Historical Sciences (CISH - ICHS); - International Committee for the History of Art (CIHA); - Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS); - Consortium of Humanities Institutes and Centres (CHCI); - International Geographical Union ( IGU - UGI); - International Association of Aesthetics (IAA).

These disciplines are mainly represented in the Faculties of Philosophy and Letters (the "humanities" in the traditional sense, Geisteswissenschaften in German), but representatives of other Faculties (Social Sciences or Natural Sciences) can be integrated.

As the Local Organizing Committee recognized by UNESCO, the World Humanities Conference – Liège 2017 Foundation gathers the Province, the City and the University of Liege across the political spectrum.


The President of the World Humanities Conference is H.E. Adama Samassekou, former President of CIPSH, former Minister of Education of Mali, former Chairman of the African Academy of Languages, Chairman of the MAAYA network.

Honorary Committee

Président :

M. Paul-Emile Mottard, Député-Président du Collège provincial de Liège

Vice-Présidents :

M. Willy Demeyer, Bourgmestre de la Ville de Liège et M. Albert Corhay, Recteur de l’Université de Liège

Membres du Comité d’Honneur de la Fondation CMH – Liège 2017


La Province de Liège

La Ville de Liège

L’Université de Liège



International Programme Committee

It is co-chaired by:

- Professor CHAO Gejin (China), Chairman of CIPSH;

- Professor Jean WINAND, Dean of the Faculty of Philosophy and Letters of the University of Liege.

It includes 75 Belgian and foreign scholars (French-speaking and Dutch-speaking) chosen by the University of Liege, CIPSH and UNESCO. It will be responsible for selecting the keynote speakers, the forum subjects and the thematic sessions, the refereeing of the papers, the presidency and secretarial work of the sessions and workshops.

World Humanities Conference Foundation

This Foundation associates the University of Liege, the City and the Province. It is chaired by Paul-Emile MOTTARD, Deputy-President of the Provincial College of Liege. The Vice-Presidents are the Rector of the University, Albert CORHAY, and the Mayor of the City, Willy DEMEYER. The Foundation is charged with the management of the financial, administrative, communicational and logistical aspects of the Conference. It is bound by convention to CIPSH and UNESCO.

The Foundation administrators are, for the Province of Liège, Mr Bernard Pourveur, Mr Jean-Pierre Burton and Mr Michel Coppé, for the City of Liège, Mr Jean-Marie Verdière and Mr Jean-Christophe Peterkenne, and for the University of Liège, Mr Albert Corhay and Mr Jean Winand.

General Secretariat

It is provided by Professor Robert Halleux, Member of the Institut de France and of the Royal Academy of Belgium assisted by a team of young scholars: Isadora Vandamme, Blanche El Gammal, Stany Mazurkiewicz and Jan Vandersmissen.

It provides daily management, preparation of documents and programmes and the organization of meetings.

Core Group

It assists and advises the General Secretariat and gathers a small group of experts coming from partner institutions and international scientific community: - President Adama Samassekou (Mali), former Président of the CIPSH ; - Professor CHAO Gejin (China), President of the CIPSH et Co-President of the Programme Committee : - Professor Luiz OOSTERBEEK, Secretary-General of the CIPSH; - Professor François DJINDJIAN, Vice-President of the CIPSH ; - Doctor John CROWLEY, representative of Mrs Nada Al-Nashif, Assistant Director-General for Social and Human Sciences at UNESCO ; - Mr Michel COPPÉ, representative of the Province of Liège; - Mr Jean-Christophe PETERKENNE, representative of the City of Liège; - Dean Jean WINAND, President of the International Programme Committee and representative of the University of Liège ; - le Professeur Robert HALLEUX, Secretary-General of the Conference ; - Doctor Michel ANDRÉ ; - Professor Rosi BRAIDOTTI ; - Professor Madeline CAVINESS - Doctor Jean-Luc DE PAEPE ; - Professor Satoko FUJIWARA ; - Professor Chantal GRELL ; - Doctor Lazare KI-ZERBO ; - Doctor Martial ZE BELINGA.


The WHC programme includes an opening session, six plenary lectures, six sections and a closing session.

The opening session will be held on Sunday, August 6, 2017 afternoon.

The closing session will be held on Friday, August 11, 2017.

The plenary lectures, assigned to "Voices of Humanity", will address the whole conference and the public in the late afternoon.

The six sections will be held in parallel for six days. Each one has one or two plenary opening lectures, by a high-level specialist (specialised keynote speaker) addressing the entire section, and several sessions. Each session includes symposia or collected papers and individual papers.

The division into sections and sessions is fixed. The proposals for symposia and papers are welcome until April 1, 2017. Once accepted by the Programme Committee and the Foundation, they will appear on the programme.


Session 1. Environmental Anthropology, Interpretation and Creativity

Session 2. History of the Natural Environment and Climate

Session 3. Humans and the Environment: Adaptations and Modifications

Session 4. Humans and the Environment in the Industrial Era

Session 5. The Humanities in Environmental Management

Session 6.Environment, Societies and Values


Session 1. Interdisciplinary Approach to Cultural Identity and its Components

Session 2. Cultural Identity and Diversity in Dynamic Perspective

Session 3. Internal Analysis of Interculturalism

Session 4. Dynamic Analysis of Interculturalism

Session 5. Roads of Dialogue, Paths of Knowledge and Cultural Routes


Session 1. Conceptual Analysis

Session 2. Borderscape: Borders as Organization of Space: Tracing and Marking

Session 3. The Dynamics of International Migration

Session 4. Migration, Culture and Values


Session 1. Regarding the Notion of Heritage

Session 2. Threats to Tangible Heritage

Session 3. Threats to Intangible Heritage

Session 4. New Patrimonialisations

Session 5. Heritage Reclaimed


Session 1. Epistemological Perspectives

Session 2. The Work of the Historian in its Political Context

Session 3. Commemorations, Celebrations and Remembrance

Session 4. From Eurocentric History to Multipolar History

Session 5. Collective Memory and the Consequences of War


Session 1. Surveys on the Evolution of the Humanities

Session 2. Digital Worlds

Session 3. The New Research Landscape

Session 4. Old Texts, New approaches

Session 5. Publication and Assessment

Session 6. The Humanities, Physical and Mathematical Sciences, Social Sciences

Session 7. Humanities, Education and Culture

Session 8. Gender Studies

Concluding Session

Rebuilding the Humanities, Rebuilding Humanism


Registration fees

Do you want to attend the WHC?

  • Students, carers and auditors: €25 (including conference documents).

Attendees facing financial hardship due to their personal situation or the socio-economic conditions in their country should contact the WHC Liège 2017 General Secretariat.

Do you want to speak at the WHC?

You have agreed on a presentation with the WHC General Secretariat. Register now :

  • “Speakers” rate (full price): €100 (including conference documents, coffee breaks and receptions).
  • “Speakers” rate (PhD students and retirees): €50 (including conference documents, coffee breaks and receptions).

Speakers facing financial hardship due to their personal situation or the socio-economic conditions in their country should contact the WHC Liège 2017 General Secretariat.

Want to participate in the Banquet of the World Humanities Conference?

Date of the Banquet: Thursday, August 10 in the evening.

  • Full price: 50 € per person.

You will soon receive an e-mail informing you of the time and place of the banquet.

Repas du midi et du soir

Les organisateurs , avec l’aide de l’association « Le Commerce Liégeois », ont entrepris une démarche de consultation des commerces du centre-ville proposant des produits de nourriture (Restaurants, Brasserie, Sandwicheries, Tea-Rooms,…) afin de solliciter leur participation à l’évènement en accordant , aux congressistes de la Conférence mondiale des Humanité dûment identifiés, un geste de nature commerciale, à définir par chaque commerçant participant. Le résultat de cette consultation et les informations pratiques en découlant seront délivrées sur ce site dès que possible.


Brussels Airlines is proud to be the official airline carrier for the 1st World Humanities Conference, granting a 10% discount on flights for attendees and accompanying persons, applicable in both Business and Economy class rates. This offer is valid from Europe, Russia, Tel Aviv & Africa to Brussels or vice versa.

Book until August 6, 2017 and travel between July 30 and August 19, 2017.


Discover a selection of hotels, holiday lets, B&Bs, and student halls and hostels near Liège city centre.

Each and every accommodation provider will do everything possible to ensure you have a pleasant stay.

These accommodation options are suited to all budgets, are located in the city centre or the suburbs, and are relatively easy to access.

While you’re here, you can also enjoy the famous festivities on 15 August – the date when the Ardent City’s festival, which commences well beforehand, culminates. The celebrations include a flea market, puppet show, folk dancing, a procession, mass in the Walloon dialect, the “tirs de campes” firecracker event, a fanfare and giant parade, popular games, concerts and many other forms of entertainment. For more information, go to :

Online Registration

Cultural and Touristic Program

On Wednesday afternoon, there is a “break” in the World Humanities Conference programme. This is a great opportunity to explore the exceptional attractions that the Province of Liège has to offer – a province that stands at the heart of Europe – as well as the Ardennes and Brussels!

The group excursions have been specially designed for all WHC attendees who wish to take part.

“Ardenne Incoming”, our receptive tourism department, has put together a selection of excursions and activities just for you:

  • The “Family of Man” exhibition in Clervaux, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • The Province of Liège’s numerous museums and attractions, including Val-Dieu Abbey and its brewery, the Château of Modave and the Chocolaterie Darcis.
  • The Brussels Parlamentarium and a guided city tour by coach and on foot.
  • The Thermes de Spa, which ally tradition and modernity.
  • A visit to Alden Biesen and Tongeren, Belgium’s oldest city.

Vous êtes inscrits à la CMH mais n’assisterez pas à l’entièreté du programme ?

Are you a speaker or planning to attend the full programme but want something to do in the evening?

Are you bringing guests with you and want something to fill their time?

Do you want to explore the region with a guided tour?

Then these group excursions are exactly what you’re looking for!

Explore the exceptional attractions of the Province of Liège and the heart of Europe:

  • Take a tour of the Ardent City, its historic city centre, its train station designed by Calatrava and the Brasserie C where you can sample local beers.
  • Explore the Province of Liège’s numerous museums and attractions, including the Guillaume Apollinaire Museum and the famous Spa-Francorchamps Circuit Museum at Stavelot Abbey, and Blegny-Mine, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Spend an afternoon exploring Maastricht!

Do you want to explore the city on your own?

Liège and its multi-faceted province have a wide range of tourist attractions to suit all tastes.

While you’re here, you can also enjoy the famous festivities on 15 August – the date when the Ardent City’s festival culminates. The celebrations include a flea market, puppet show, folk dancing, a procession, mass in the Walloon dialect, the “tirs de campes” firecracker event, a fanfare and giant parade, popular games, concerts and many other forms of entertainment. For more information, go to: