Shanghai, China

For several years Donovan Rypkema has served as an adjunct professor at the University of Pennsylvania, teaching a class on the economics of historic preservation. Last year he added an international praxis course and took 10 graduate students to Shanghai. The course was held in collaboration with the World Heritage Institute for Training and Research in Asia and the Pacific (WHITRAP) based at Tongji University. The students evaluated 8 lilongs, low scale alley housing complexes built in the late 19thand early 20th century. They used the new UNESCO Historic Urban Landscape protocol as the framework of their analysis. Then they conducted cost/benefit analyses on the lilongs which included not only financial cost/benefit but also cultural, social, and environmental. While non-financial cost/benefit analysis has been done in environmental economics, it has rarely if ever been specifically applied to heritage buildings. This combination of the concepts within the Historic Urban Landscape approach and cost/benefit analysis that includes non-financial variables holds great promise for more comprehensive protection and use of heritage resources.