UCLG, ICOMOS, IFLA : Culture for Development: Launching the #Culture2030Goal Initiative

UCLG, ICOMOS, IFLA : Culture for Development: Launching the #Culture2030Goal Initiative

In 2015, the 193 Member States of the United Nations agreed on the 2030 Agenda as a roadmap towards a richer, fairer, more sustainable world. Action on culture features explicitly in Target 11.4, and implicitly under several other Goals, but also as a cross-cutting factor for success.

But how well are Member States doing in incorporating culture into their responses? 'Culture in the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda', a new report from the #Culture2030Goal campaign looks to find out, analysing statements, declarations, and voluntary national and local reviews prepared for the four annual High-Level Political Forums that have taken place so far. The campaign is managed by several global and regional networks, including Arterial Network, Culture Action Europe (CAE), International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS), International Federation of Arts Councils and Culture Agencies (IFACCA), International Federation of Coalitions for Cultural Diversity (IFCCD), International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), International Music Council (IMC), Latin American Network of Arts for Social Transformation, and the United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG) Culture Committee (Agenda 21 for culture).

The report confirms that there are plenty of examples of good practice already, in particular at the local level, where governments have recognised culture both as a priority in its own right, and as a driver of progress across the board.

Nonetheless, culture continues to receive less attention than other aspects of development. This creates the risk that it is insufficiently supported, and that opportunities to deliver on the aims of the 2030 Agenda are missed.

The #Culture2030Goal report therefore makes a series of recommendations to governments and other stakeholders at all levels, as well as to the cultural sector itself. In particular, it underlines the need for those coordinating SDG implementation to include culture – and cultural actors from the outset. It calls on the UN to hold a high-level meeting focused on culture in the coming years, and to support the development of indicators that show the contribution culture makes to achieving the goals of the 2030 Agenda. Finally, it recommends that cultural actors themselves focus more on how they contribute. The launch of the #Culture2030Goal initiative provides a great space to do this. 

Members of the campaign have written to the Director General of UNESCO, and took the opportunity of the organisation’s 40th General Conference in November 2019 to highlight the report’s recommendations to Member States.

We look forward to working with the World Urban Campaign movement to show the impact that culture can have on development as we move into the Decade of Delivery.


Article by : Stephen Wyber and Ege Yildirim
Photo credits: Image 1: Stephen Wyber (CC) . Image 2: UCLG (CC)