Resolution on cultural diversity
The fifth World Congress of the Education International, meeting in Berlin from 22 to 26 July 2007
1. Reaffirms that cultural rights are fundamental human rights.
2. Recalls the resolution on education in cultural diversity adopted by the Education International at its 4th World Congress in 2004.
3. Welcomes the entry into force of the UNESCO Convention on cultural diversity, which constitutes a useful tool to meet the unprecedented challenges presented by globalisation of the economy, rapid technological change and the growing imbalance in cultural expression at international level.
4. Underlines the originality of the UNESCO Convention, which formally affirms, for the first time in the history of international law, the sovereign right of States to preserve, adopt and implement policies and measures which they deem appropriate for protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions on their territory.
5. Notes that the Convention recognises the specific nature of cultural activities, goods and services as the bearers of identity, values and meaning which must therefore not be treated as being of exclusively commercial value.
6. Underlines that the entry into effect of this Convention constitutes an immense victory for all countries and for all organisations militating in favour of the diversity of cultural expressions.
7. Underlines that this is a major step in the processes of international recognition of the right of States and governments freely to establish cultural policies.
8. Notes however that the number of 60 signatory countries - representing only just over a quarter of the 192 UNESCO member countries - remains clearly insufficient.
9. Also notes that, as with all major international treaties, the legal and political force of such an instrument ultimately depends on the international consensus to which it gives rise and on the representativeness of the regions and linguistic groups that sign up to it.
10. Notes finally that the entry into effect of the Convention is not the end of a process but rather a step up to a new stage during which increasing the number of ratifications and furthering implementation of the Convention will constitute major challenges.
The 5th World Congress of the Education International
11. Calls upon the signatory governments: To implement the Convention on the protection and promotion of the diversity of cultural expressions. 12. Calls upon the non-signatory governments: To ratify the UNESCO Convention as soon as possible. 13. Calls upon all States: To take the necessary measures to safeguard and promote their country's cultural heritage and current production. 14. Asks the EI member organisations: To press their country's government to ratify or implement the UNESCO Convention.
The EI should:
15. Continue to hold the necessary discussions with UNESCO and all the agencies concerned to strengthen the institutional and financial capacity of the developing countries to prepare and implement policies to support the development of their cultural industries.