In cooperation with UNIDO, the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO), the World Bank and the Asian Development Bank, the Office of the UNESCO Regional Advisor for Asia and the Pacific held a Senior Expert Symposium in Jodhpur, India on 22-26 February 2005. The Symposium approved the Jodhpur consensus that contains a common understanding and approach to developing a conceptual framework for cultural industries in the region.
This Symposium succeeded in establishing the basis for a new strategic alliance between culture and development in the Asia-Pacific region, eloquently articulated in the Jodhpur Consensus. Bringing together experts, academics, businesspeople, policymakers and professionals through presentations and round-table meetings, the event contributed to UNESCO’s efforts to bridge the knowledge and technology gap between the region and industrialized countries to allow Asian Pacific countries to unlock the economic and social potential of their cultural assets and traditional knowledge.
The first phase of this programme, which included the drafting of a White Paper, the establishment of a regional framework for statistical indicators and the convening of the Jodhpur Symposium, has been successfully completed. The UNESCO Bangkok Office managed the partners in this phase including the UNESCO Institute for Statistics, UNIDO, WIPO, the World Bank, the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH) and Maharaja of Jodhpur. The first initiative to be implemented as of 2006 will be a regional data collection model project for the establishment of baseline data pertaining to the socio-economic development potential of the cultural industries in specific countries. This project is endorsed by the Spanish International Development Cooperation.