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Mapping Cultural Diversity – Good Practices from Around the Globe

This compilation of good practices related to the diversity of cultural expressions is a project of the U40 Network “Cultural Diversity 2030″. The German Commission for UNESCO and the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) published it as a contribution to the debate on the implementation of the UNESCO Convention “Diversity of Cultural Expressions”. On November 29th 2010, Mapping Cultural Diversity – Good Practices from Around the Globe was presented at UNESCO Headquarters in Paris.

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Published five years after the successful adoption of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions in 2005 the brochure on good practices contributes to the information sharing foreseen by the Convention, and to help assess the global situation of diversity of cultural expressions.

“The heart of the matter is the public responsibility for creating favourable conditions for the development of cultural diversity”, says Walter Hirche, president of the German Commission for UNESCO. “This can only be achieved through joint efforts of government, civil society and the private sector. The UNESCO Convention establishes that cultural policy and public support for arts and culture shall remain possible, even in the context of opening markets and progressive deregulation under the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the European Union (EU).”

In this way the projects included in the publication encompass various fields addressed in the Convention (such as the arts, media, creative industries, international cooperation, policy development, research and education) and at various levels, ranging from the local to the international. The idea of mapping good practices on cultural diversity is based on the observation that carefully documented case studies can not only provide inspiration for networking and collaboration but also aid planning and policy making. The aim of the publication is to give vivid and concrete examples on how the UNESCO Convention could be of benefit and what successfull implementation could look like.

Besides an overview of ways, measures and possibilities for implementing Articles 9 and 19 of the UNESCO Convention, the main section of the publication includes a total of 39 good practices in six chapters, corresponding to the six main areas addressed in the Convention: policy measures, programmes and structures; protection and promoting cultural expressions; international cooperation; capacity building; culture and development, and information sharing, exchange and analysis. Within this structure, a second matrix provides orientation on who initiated the project: namely, governmental institutions, civil society, partnerships of both or with the private sector. This structure will allow each reader to easily find practices relevant to their specific interests and needs.

The idea for this publication was born at the 2009 U40 World Forum in Paris.