World Heritage

Sweden has proposed a transnational nomination to the World Heritage List of a selection of sites that carry a scientific heritage from the development of systematic biology during the 18th century.
Symbol of "The Rise of Systematic Biology" nomination. Illustration: Jonas Lundin

"The Rise of Systematic Biology" Nomination

“The Rise of Systematic Biology” is a proposed transnational serial cultural landscape world heritage nomination. Together the component parts carry a heritage from an era in the 18th century when natural history studies developed strongly and formed the foundation of the science that we know today as systematic biology – a science that aims to observe, describe and classify all the world’s organisms.

The tangible heritage of systematic biology is found in garden structures, buildings and other remnants of the scientific activity in the 18th century, as well as in remaining authentic individuals and populations: descendants to the collected specimens that once were essential for the foundation of the science systematic biology. These preserved individuals and populations have a scientific as well as a cultural value.

The sites proposed to be included in “The Rise of Systematic Biology” were important in the scientific exchange, collaboration and opposition among scientists during the 18th century. This development was dependent on two kinds of places: 1) the global network of research facilities which were the base of the scientific network and the exchange of plants, animals, literature and other knowledge within the scientific community and 2) the excursion sites in different parts of the world where the study objects were studied in the wild and collected. There is no single site that, on its own, can illustrate the early development of systematic biology. Instead, a geographically well distributed selection of different types of sites is needed to fully represent the heritage of systematic biology. Each site proposed to be included contributes to the outstanding universal value of the series.

A Swedish initiative

So far, the proposed Swedish component parts are included on Sweden's tentative list of future World Heritage nominations. Discussions are ongoing about including component parts from seven other countries.

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