Culture and Development

Placing culture at the heart of development policy constitutes an essential investment in the world's future and a pre-condition to successful globalization processes that take into account the principles of cultural diversity. It is UNESCO's mission to remind all States of this major issue.

As demonstrated by the failure of certain projects underway since the 1970s, development is not synonymous with economic growth alone. It is a means to achieve a more satisfactory intellectual, emotional, moral and spiritual existence. As such, development is inseparable from culture. Strengthening the contribution of culture to sustainable development is a goal that was launched in connection with the World Decade for Cultural Development (1988-1998). Ever since, progress has been made thanks to a corpus of standard-setting instruments and demonstration tools such as cultural statistics, inventories, regional and national mapping of cultural resources.

In this regard, the major challenge is to convince political decision-makers and local, national and international social actors to integrating the principles of cultural diversity and the values of cultural pluralism into all public policies, mechanisms and practices, particularly through public/private partnerships.

This strategy will aim, on the one hand, at incorporating culture into all development policies, be they related to education, science, communication, health, environment or cultural tourism and, on the other hand, at supporting the development of the cultural sector through creative industries. By contributing in this way to poverty alleviation, culture offers important benefits in terms of social cohesion.

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