The way forward: a human centred approach to development

People working at the Mananara biosphere reserve. Photographer: Roger, Dominique © UNESCO

After Rio+20, the international community shall concentrate on the review of the MDGs and on defining the post-2015 development agenda. It is crucial to ensure that the next model and strategies for sustainable development include consideration of culture. UNESCO, working in partnership with Governments, sister UN Agencies, the private sector and the civil society, is promoting a new agenda for development that integrates consideration for culture, based on the following main strategic actions:

  1. Integrate the cultural dimension in the conception, measurement, and practice of sustainable development. Commit to encourage taking into account and integrating traditional scientific knowledge and practices in sustainable development policies in particular related to the sustainable management of natural resources, food security and access to clean water.  
  2. Underline the importance of the conservation of natural and cultural heritage and the strengthening of international co-operation in this area, for sustainable development. Commit to develop the capacities for the conservation, protection and safeguarding of our heritage.
  3. Recognize the important role of cultural as well as creative industries, sustainable tourism, and heritage based urban revitalization for sustainable development and a green economy and the potential of these economic subsectors to generate green employment, stimulate local development and trade opportunities, and foster social inclusion and creativity.
  4. Recognize that cultural factors influence lifestyles, individual behaviour, consumption patterns, values related to environmental stewardship, and the ways in which we interact with our natural environment. Therefore a move to more sustainable consumption and production habits will need to engage with and utilize culture.
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