Krakow’s second term Presidency of the UNESCO Cities of Literature Steering Committee
The 10th UNESCO Network Meeting of Creative Cities held in Östersund, Sweden finished on 16th September. 250 delegates from 116 cities representing 54 countries were discussing sustainable development of cities based on culture and creativity and shared their best practices in this field. Two Krakow` s initiatives were presented at the Meeting - Czytaj PL (Read PL) and the support program for cultural activities in bookshops. Krakow was also elected to remain in the position President of the Cities of Literature Steering Committee for another 2-year term!
- I am glad that the efforts of the Krakow Festival Bureau - the operator of the Krakow the UNESCO City of Literature Programme taken in cooperation with local and international literary communities, are appreciated by the cities having such enormous contribution into the history of the world literature and occupying leading positions in the world of culture, such as Edinburgh, Dublin, Prague, Heidelberg or Barcelona. This gives meaning to our initiatives - says Jacek Majchrowski, the City Mayor.
Creative Cities Network is a UNESCO Programme created in 2004 in order to promote ecenomic, social and cultural development of cities based on principles of creativity and sustainable development. UNESCO awards the titles of Creative Cities in the fields of music, literature, film, catering, artistic crafts, design and visual arts. Krakow joined the Network in 2013 (as the first Slav and second non English speaking City of Literature in the world) and Katowice became a member city last year - as a City of Music.
Krakow was offered leadership in the Cities of Literature Steering Committee in 2014, in appreciation of involvement and activity in creating multidirectional city strategy for development of reading habits, support offered to Krakow’s creative circles and actions taken to strengthen the prestige of the Network.
During the Ostersund Meeting, Justyna Jochym, representing the Krakow Festival Bureau as the operator of the "Krakow - The UNESCO City of Literature" presented two innovative projects prepared by Krakow and chosen by UNESCO as models of good practices for all cities members of the Network - the all Poland free e-book library - Czytaj PL (Read PL) and the pioneer support program for cultural activities in bookshops. Both projects were also shown on charts at the exhibition organized in the conference centre hall in Frösö.
With the decision of the UNESCO Authorities, Krakow’s Presidency of the Cities of Literature Steering Committee was prolonged until 2018. The objectives of the Committee involve, among others, evaluation of candidates to join the Network, communication and representation of the Cities of Literature on the UNESCO forum and monitoring progress in the implementation of literature programs in the Member Cities. The Operator of the "Krakow - the UNESCO City of Literature" is the Krakow Festival Bureau, heading a group of 20 Cities of Literature, including Edinburgh, Melbourne, Iowa City (US) Dublin, Rejkiavik, Norwich, Heidelberg, Dunedin (New Zealand), Granada (Spain), Prague, Baghdad, Barcelona, Lviv, Montevideo, Nottingham, Obidos (Portugal), Tartu/Dorpat (Estonia) and Ulianovsk (Russia).
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