• Graduation


  • ECTS-Points


  • Learning format

    Blended learning

  • Duration

    2 semesters, part time

  • Presence phases


  • Start

    Winter semester 2024/25, Krems

  • Admission requirements

    According to curriculum

  • Language


  • Curriculum

    Subject to Senate approval

The certificate programme offers access to the international network of the European Security and Defence College. Together with experts in international law, you will analyse current conflicts. In the CP's final simulation game, you will lead and communicate effectively in stressful situations and protect cultural property in a major international emergency.
On completion of the CP, you will be able to support emergency organisations in dealing with major international incidents as an expert in the protection of cultural property.

Anna Maria Kaiser

Join the international network on cultural property protection and security - the connection to the ESDC makes it possible!

Ass.-Prof. Mag. Dr.
Anna Maria Kaiser

Study Program Director – Center for Cultural Property Protection

Benefit from our study program

  • International network interlinked with the ESDC (European Security and Defence College)
  • Innovative teaching formats require on-site simulation games and simulations
  • Leadership and communication in critical situations and under pressure

European Security and Defence College (ESDC)

The ESDC is a network of civilian and military institutes, colleges, academies, universities, institutions and other actors dealing with security and defence policy issues within the EU.

The "Cultural Property Protection Course" was developed for the ESDC in 2022 by the Center for Cultural Property Protection in cooperation with the National Defence Academy and the Amt für Kultur of the Principality of Liechtenstein.

The "Cultural Property Protection Course" can be attended as part of the Micro-Credential Program (MCP) "International Cultural Property Protection" or the Certificate Program (CP) "Cultural Property Protection and Disaster Response".


Cultural Property Protection Exercises

At the Center for Cultural Property Protection, we specialise in the professional implementation of cultural property protection measures and provide hands-on training and exercises - from staff exercises to authentic disaster simulations - to put management and protection strategies into practice. Experienced experts lead the exercises to strengthen cooperation between different actors and emergency organisations, train procedures and establish standardised workflows.


  • practice-oriented

  • solution-oriented skills

  • leadership skills

Module 1: International Cultural Property Protection
Module 2: International Humanitarian Law

This module is dedicated to International Humanitarian Law, the legal framework for the protection of cultural property, which is firmly embedded in the "Rules of Civilized Warfare". Students will work in small groups under the guidance of experts to develop the core elements and present them in the context of recent case studies.

  • Contents

    In addition to the fundamental principles and concepts of the International Humanitarian Law, an understanding of human rights and the legal sources of the International Humanitarian Law provides a solid basis for legal knowledge.

  • Contents

    Conventions specific to the protection of cultural property include the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict, the Roerich Pact and selected UNESCO Conventions. Actions and initiatives to protect cultural property are discussed through case studies, as are the International Criminal Court in The Hague and the enforcement of international humanitarian law.

Module 3: Leadership and Communication

This module focuses on leadership and communication, enabling students, as future professionals in the field of cultural heritage protection, to take responsibility for their staff and to communicate effectively in stressful situations. Different leadership styles and systems are introduced, and structured training in crisis communication and media relations completes the module.

  • Contents

    The topic "Leading in Crisis Situations" focuses on approaches, leadership procedures and leadership principles of emergency organisations to provide, among other things, a basic understanding of staff work, which in turn enables to work together with various emergency response organisations at national and international level to protect cultural property.

  • Contents

    A major challenge in any crisis or stressful situation is getting the right information to the right person in the right way, ideally at the right time. In the final structured scenario and media training, presentation techniques are adapted to your own personality.

Module 4: Table-Top Exercise Disaster Response

The CP concludes with a simulation game on crisis management and disaster response with a focus on the protection of cultural heritage. The content of the previous modules is brought together in this simulation game and woven into a complex scenario that has to be mastered - even under time pressure.

  • Contents

    Selected working methods of crisis and task forces will be deepened and analysed with regard to time-critical cooperation in order to present them comprehensively in the final simulation game.

  • Contents

    The scenario of the simulation game is a (natural) disaster that threatens or has claimed a large number of lives, may destroy the infrastructure of an entire region and will also affect or has affected cultural property. Cultural heritage must also be protected and recovered as part of a large-scale relief operation.

The study program director is Anna Kaiser, Assistant Professor and Head of the Center for Cultural Property Protection. Her research themes predominantly orbit around the protection of cultural property, integrating a multidisciplinary approach that spans ancient history, military studies, and contemporary strategies for safeguarding heritage. Her methodological expertise lies in combining historical analysis with practical military training, emphasizing the application of strategies for protecting cultural heritage in conflict zones and disaster-prone areas.

The lecturers of the CP consist of a large number of renowned international experts from various disciplines with civilian and military backgrounds. They are all involved not only in theoretical and applied research but also in the practice of cultural heritage protection. This ensures that the latest state of research and knowledge is conveyed.

Registration Module 1: International Cultural Property Protection

Each EU Member State has a number of national contact points or nominators who are responsible for registering selected candidates from that Member State for ESDC courses. If you are interested in attending the Cultural Heritage Protection Course, please ask your supervisor to contact the relevant national nominator by e-mail.

The Center for Cultural Property Protection also offers the opportunity to participate in the ESDC courses at the University for Continuing Education Krems as part of the Certificate Program (CP) "Cultural Property Protection and Disaster Response" or the Micro-Credential Program (MCP) "International Cultural Property Protection".

Admission to the ESDC Cultural Property Protection Course is guaranteed for CP participants. The remaining seats will be allocated to MCP participants on a first-come, first-served basis.



In combination with other continuing education programs, Stackable Programs can be combined to achieve an academic degree.

After the Academic Expert Program (AEP), many other options are open, such as an academic degree (Master).
Tatjana Kohl

The Stackable Program offers me complete flexibility in the design of my studies.

Tatjana Kohl


Which follow-up studies and programs are available?

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