Experts put forward recommendations on how to harness the power of culture for sustainable development

Source: European Commission
|
November 23, 2022
|
Culture & Sustainability
Source: European Commission
November 23, 2022
Culture & Sustainability

Image © © Iva Rajović / Unsplash

Ahead of UNESCO’s World Conference on Cultural Policies and Sustainable Development,  MONDIACULT 2022, taking place in Mexico from 28 to 30 September 2022, experts have issued a new report entitled “Stormy Times. Nature and humans: Cultural courage for change”, which focuses on the important role of culture as a driver for the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Culture in all its forms, expressions and meanings, must be at the heart of any transformational path for human development. With the support from the Commission, the experts formulated a set of recommendations to rethink the relationship between humans and nature, to fuel our cultural imagination for a liveable, sustainable future.

Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, Mariya Gabriel, said: “Culture is the foundation of our societies. It is a catalyst that helps us question our way of life that helps us initiate the changes we want to see. I welcome this report and the work of the experts group, which will provide concrete insight on our path to a brighter, more sustainable future.”

Some proposals include, for instance, embracing the Earth Overshoot Day, the date when, each year, humanity’s demand for natural resources surpasses the Earth’s ability to renew them. Experts suggest that awareness on this particular day could be raised several times during the year, with five annual moments for sustained cultural action and cooperation.

Culture can also be a powerful tool to better communicate the available scientific knowledge on issues such as social injustice, inequalities, lack of gender equality, loss of biodiversity, lack of food security, climate change and others, addressed in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Artists and cultural organisations should play a full part in ensuring that objectives of the European Green Deal and the sustainable development are met.

Besides, the report recommends that the cultural and creative sectors should become greener and fairer. Also, the sustainability readiness and the energy for change of the next generation of change-makers can be fully mobilised to this goal, while putting democracy, human rights and artistic freedom at its core.

These key messages are recalling some of the priorities at the centre of the Commission’s concerns and ongoing work towards the preparation of the future Work Plan for Culture 2023-2026 and, in particular, with a view to further strengthen the interplay between culture and sustainable development in EU policies and actions.

In parallel to this report, under the priority of “Culture as a driver of sustainable development” within the current Work Plan for Culture 2019-2022, the Commission is working on a report on EU initiatives and examples of culture driving sustainable development goals across several European policy areas.

In this context, as emphasised by the experts, transformation pathways led by culture, as well as re-designing cultural governance towards a more coherent policy framework, is key to achieving ambitious human development goals and making the turnaround towards sustainability.

In 2015, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development echoed that culture and cultural policies are crucial to achieving at least 9 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the transformational agenda as a whole. Nonetheless, the contribution of culture is insufficiently recognised in the framework of the 2030 Agenda, a route which this report aims to invert.

Creative Future
Creative Future

A global framework to strengthen culture and arts education

February 15, 2024

Cultural Heritage
Cultural Heritage

45th Session of World Heritage Committee Concludes with 42 New Site Inscriptions and Key Discussions on Global Heritage Challenges

September 30, 2023

Creativity, the Brain, and Health
WHO Chief Scientist, Sir Jeremy Farrar, at Carnegie Hall, New York as part of UNGA Healing Arts Week 2023 | © Fadi Kheir
Creativity, the Brain, and Health

New Research on the Health Benefits of the Arts Announced

September 26, 2023

Intellectual Property
Intellectual Property

Intellectual Property Tools Are Key for Achieving United Nations Sustainable Development Goals

June 8, 2023

Creative Economy
Creative Economy

New data on the economic activity of the U.S. Arts & Cultural Sector in 2021

March 20, 2023

Creative Economy
Creative Economy

UNESCO provides nearly one million USD to local projects in Africa, Asia, and Latin America

March 17, 2023

Challenges
Challenges

Forty groups representing artists and performers launch a campaign for AI that supports human creativity and accomplishment

March 17, 2023

Cultural Diplomacy
Cultural Diplomacy

Qatar and Indonesia join in yearlong creative exchange in 2023

March 13, 2023

Expertise

Insights

Giuliano Picchi is a cultural manager, creative economy specialist, researcher, author, and founder, driven by the belief that the arts and culture are main forces of change and growth at a global level.

MISSION

To contribute as a global, active citizen to the development, growth, and progress of our societies.

Contact