Our work

In its work on World Heritage, IUCN implements initiatives to enhance the role of the World Heritage Convention in protecting the planet’s biodiversity, and to promote effective use of its mechanisms to strengthen the conservation and management of natural World Heritage sites.

Explore natural World Heritage sites

Discover key facts and figures on natural World Heritage, and explore the full list of sites recognised under the World Heritage Convention for their unique natural values, such as the scale of natural habitats, intactness of ecological processes, viability of populations of rare species, as well as exceptional natural beauty.

Explore the planet's outstanding protected areas

Advisor on World Heritage

IUCN provides technical advice to help the World Heritage Committee make informed decisions on natural heritage. IUCN evaluates all sites nominated for World Heritage status due to their natural values and monitors the state of conservation of existing natural World Heritage sites.

More on our advisory role

IUCN World Heritage Outlook

The IUCN World Heritage Outlook is the first global assessment of natural World Heritage. Launched in 2014 and with two updates in 2017 and 2020, it is IUCN's flagship for assessing all natural World Heritage sites. It is composed of a website and a three-yearly global report.

More on the IUCN World Heritage Outlook

World Heritage Leadership

The World Heritage Leadership programme is a capacity building programme jointly run by IUCN and ICCROM, helping to improve conservation and management practices for culture and nature, as an integral component of World Heritage sites' contribution to sustainable development.

More on the World Heritage Leadership programme

IUCN's initiatives on World Heritage

Alongside our work as the official Advisor to UNESCO, we lead on a series of initiatives to make the World Heritage Convention more effective and relevant to global conservation. These initiatives focus on themes or regions specifically in the context of World Heritage.

Discover our World Heritage initiatives

IUCN's policies and advice notes on World Heritage

IUCN works to provide guidance while outlining its position on key issues affecting natural World Heritage sites, such as extractives, logging and large infrastructures, and seeking sustainable solutions.

Explore our policies and advice notes