The current 4th Master Plan (2013-2016) expressly states that "Spanish Cooperation, based on the experience it has accumulated in its Culture and Development Strategy... shall promote respect for cultural diversity, intercultural dialogue, and freedom of expression and creation, as well as the effective participation of all people in cultural life".
The general objective of the Culture and Development Strategy is to foster the cultural opportunities and capacities of people and communities, as substantial elements in sustainable human development. It contains seven Strategic Lines, one of which (L5) involves supporting heritage conservation, restoration, preservation and enhancement, for tangible and intangible heritage, analysing the contribution that all these multi-sector efforts can make to sustainable development. The rationale for the P>D Heritage for Development Programme falls within the sustainable management of cultural heritage for development (L5).
The right to identity and the defence of cultural diversity are inalienable components of comprehensive human development; and heritage, in its broadest sense (tangible and intangible, cultural and natural), is one of the principal resources for development. Therefore, the P>D Heritage for Development Programme seeks to achieve the goals of human and social development, of improving living conditions, and of creating wealth, through the enhancement and sustainable management of cultural heritage, establishing the conditions for these improvements to benefit, especially, the population with the fewest resources. It also favours developing cultural capacities and preserving identities and cultural diversity.
In seeking to achieve these goals, AECID's P>D Heritage for Development Programme represents an evolution and updating of the Cultural Heritage Programme launched by AECI in the late 1980s. It is currently part of Spain's public policy commitments regarding development cooperation included in the 4th Master Plan 2013-2016.
The Heritage Programme has been operating in Latin America since 1985, and has contributed to the implementation of 9 Cultural Landscape Management Plans, more than 30 Historic Centre Plans, 200 actions in renovation of architectural and urban heritage, and the launching of 66 Workshop Schools that have trained more than 26,000 young people. Since 2010, the Heritage Programme and the Workshop Schools have been managed independently.