On August 20, 2008, the Director-General of UNESCO, Mr. Koïchiro Matsuura, named Glasgow a UNESCO City of Music as part of the organization’s Creative Cities Network.
“We at UNESCO believe that culture not only makes an economic contribution, it provides meaning and a sense of identity and continuity that is integral to the life of all societies,” said the Director-General during the ceremony. “An understanding of culture helps communities grapple with the challenges of globalization, by preserving the values and practices that define their way of life, and by promoting respect for other cultural traditions and ways of life. It represents a way of engaging with cultural differences and building social harmony, of making people of all ages and origins feel involved,” Mr. Matsuura added.
Glasgow is now the 12th city in the Creative Cities Network established by UNESCO at the end of 2004 to promote social, economic, and cultural development. Mr. Matsuura noted that the cities who join this global network “promote their local creative scene, share their experience with a wider audience, and create new opportunities both for themselves and others through this global platform.” The development of partnerships between the public and private sectors is a key feature of the network.”
Glasgow is the second Scottish city to join the network, which includes Edinburgh, its first member, which was proclaimed City of Literature in 2004.