Concept

Common heritage of humanity

Summary
Common heritage of humanity (also termed the common heritage of mankind, common heritage of humankind or common heritage principle) is a principle of international law that holds the defined territorial areas and elements of humanity's common heritage (cultural and natural) should be held in trust for future generations and be protected from exploitation by individual nation states or corporations. Origins In tracing the origins of the common heritage principle, it is important to distinguish its history as a term from its conceptual history. The common heritage principle was developed under different names, including common "heritage", common "property", and common "patrimony" of mankind. These terms have at times described different concepts; for instance, in 1813 the "property of mankind" might mean the arts and sciences, rather than items or areas. By the early 20th century, "common heritage" and similar terms usually referred to areas and the resources in them, while ot
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