Decision-making framework for Dutch shipwrecks abroad

Thousands of shipwrecks are located all over the world. Many of these (about 1600 according to the Wreck Count), are emblematic of Dutch culture and history and part of the country's national identity. In the absence of responsible management, however, these wrecks will eventually disappear. Various decisions need to be made in order to determine if a shipwreck will be protected or if a location will be analyzed by the Cultural Heritage Agency (RCE) and therefore by the Dutch government. This document presents the decision-making framework.

As owner and manager of Dutch waters, the government plays an important part in maritime heritage care. The RCE works together with partners in order to establish sustainable heritage management on an international level. A series of protocols has been published in order to achieve this, amongst which this decision-making framework.


Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands, 2022.

This decision-making framework is a result of the International Programme for Maritime Heritage 2017-2021. It is also available in Dutch.