In order to promote the integration of culture into sustainable development and meet its commitment under the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, the Quebec Ministry of Culture, Communications, and the Status of Women will be working on developing an Agenda 21 on culture until 2013. This Agenda 21, a true action plan for the 21st century, will be the spearhead of the ministry’s efforts in matters of sustainable development.
“This innovative action represents a unique opportunity for Québec to once again assert its leadership in the field of cultural diversity. It will also be a concrete way of showing that a society’s long term viability depends on four inextricable dimensions: environmental responsibility, economic health, social equity, and cultural vitality,” stated Minister Christine St-Pierre on releasing her ministry’s plan of action.
According to the minister, “This plan of action rests on reflection on the various dimensions of sustainable development. It describes the actions the ministry has already taken and possible developments in the field. It also describes fifteen actions representing my ministry’s contributions to reaching the government’s objectives.”
According to the press release, the action plan is based on two main principles. The first is the protection of cultural heritage—now enshrined in the Sustainable Development Act—as one of the sixteen principles that must be taken into account in all sustainable development initiatives. The second is the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, which obliges signatory states to make culture a part of sustainable development.
The document, entitled “La culture au coeur du développement durable”, is available on the Ministry website.