The intensity and the number of attacks against cultural heritage has
increased significantly in recent years. Persecution of individuals for
cultural or religious reasons, combined with the systematic destruction of
their cultural heritage, marked the emergence of a form of cultural cleansing
that is unprecedented in recent history. The targeting of cultural diversity
has become a key aspect of the humanitarian and security challenges in the
regions concerned. The protection of cultural diversity can contribute to
restoring social cohesion and to opening prospects to resolve crises,
particularly in protracted conflict situations. Respect for cultural
diversity is also essential for reconciliation, national dialogue and
reconstruction. The rehabilitation of heritage, the practicing of traditions,
but also the strengthening of cohesion through an inclusive social fabric
that is respectful of cultural diversity, can contribute to the restoration
of security and peace.
To discuss how this vision can strengthen conflict prevention and crisis
management policies, *UNESCO *is organizing *a High-level meeting and
technical conference*, in partnership with *the European Union*, and with the
support from *the Government of Flanders*.
Cultural Diplomacy, Protecting Cultural Rights in Protracted Crisis, Culture
and Arts for Dialogue, Conflict Resolution and Stabilization, Culture for
Recovery, Rehabilitation and Resilience, Working with Law Enforcement to
Protect Cultural Property
The World Bank has described urbanization as ‘the defining phenomenon of
the 21st century’. 90% of urban growth is happening in the developing world
and over 50% of urban dwellers are youth. Two billion new urban inhabitants
are expected in the next 20 years.
In the face of such an evolution and the potential risk of alienation of a
growing number of urban populations, new models for viable, diverse,
peaceful, creative and vibrant cities are needed in the developing world.
Organised byUN Habitat and Directorate General for Development and Cooperation (EuropeAid) Unit B4
The objective of Art & Architecture at Work at the 24th UN Habitat Governing
Council Meeting  is to promote the role of art and architecture at the
service of inclusive and sustainable urban development in African cities.
Bottom-up initiatives, participatory approaches, and community involvement
are increasingly valued in urban planning. Artists and architects together
bring significant input to the process. Through the investment of public
spaces, public art, and public architecture, they can engage civil society
towards cultural ownership of the city and steer urban growth towards
sustainable and inclusive patterns, alongside state-driven initiatives.
Art & Architecture at Work presents recent best practices in Africa, as
models to be encouraged as part of the urban planning processes.