Mr. Michel Audet, Quebec Government Representative within the Permanent Delegation of Canada to UNESCO believes the World Report on Cultural Diversity, to be launched next August, “will lend an international perspective to major social debates underway in Québec on such varied topics as protecting the French language, national identity, reasonable accommodations, sustainable development, diversity of cultural expression, and media consolidation.”
On January 14, Mr. Audet, whose comments are reported in Bulletin Québec@monde, attended a meeting called by UNESCO Assistant Director General for Culture Françoise Rivière together with other Member States of the organization in order to discuss the report.
According to the Québec@monde article, “The World Report on Cultural Diversity aims to provide a profile of issues involving cultural diversity, critically review common notions and assumptions, and propose concrete recommendations in trans-sectoral areas. Topics receiving special attention include identities, intercultural dialogue, the future of languages, media pluralism and cultural industries, education, sustainable development, cultural industries, governance, and human rights.
The report was requested by the 2005 General Conference and is on a scale comparable to that of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) World Development Report on Human Development, the UNESCO Education for All (EFA) Global Monitoring Report, and the United Nations World Water Development Report (WWDR) by UN-Water.
UNESCO created an Advisory Committee of fifteen experts from various fields across several continents. The Committee is tasked with steering the work toward achieving the goals set out in 2005. There have been numerous consultations with members of UNESCO, civil society, and the academic milieu. Between 2006 and 2008, UNESCO requested over 50 expert reports.
The 350-page, eight-chapter World Report on Cultural Diversity will include 10 major recommendations based on consultations over winter and spring with UNESCO’s 193 member countries. Before the Report’s official release, scheduled for August, 2009, a summary may be available for International Cultural Diversity Week, which concludes on May 21.”
For more information on the UNESCO World Report on Cultural Diversity, visit the UNESCO website