Building peace in the minds of men and women

Anniversaries 2016 -

2016 France

The French Academy of Sciences, founded in 1666, remains as one of the longest lasting, oldest and prestigious institutions devoted to scientific cooperation and basic sciences promotion. The idea of focusing the achievements of the French Academy of Sciences in promoting international scientific research and multicultural dialogue and cooperation as well as the important role of women scientists in its history. All these make this 350th anniversary one that is fully aligned with UNESCO’s main line of actions in science.

2016 France

350th anniversary of the establishment of the French Academy of Sciences (1666) (2016)

The French Academy of Sciences, founded in 1666, remains as one of the longest lasting, oldest and prestigious institutions devoted to scientific cooperation and basic sciences promotion. The idea of focusing the achievements of the French Academy of Sciences in promoting international scientific research and multicultural dialogue and cooperation as well as the important role of women scientists in its history. All these make this 350th anniversary one that is fully aligned with UNESCO’s main line of actions in science.

2016 Georgia

Beyond the celebration of German settlers in Azerbaijan and Georgia, this anniversary outlines a relevant aspect of the encounter among peoples from different cultural and religious backgrounds and the interaction that emerged, that will be celebrated with commemoration events in Azerbaijan, Georgia and in Germany. In the context of globalized and increasingly diverse societies with growing challenges to peaceful coexistence, this celebration carries a strong message of openness to the Other, of tolerance and respect of diversity and difference. It will particularly contribute to promoting intercultural and interreligious dialogue for better mutual understanding and peace, echoing in this regard the objectives of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), for which UNESCO is the lead United Nations agency.

2016 Georgia

200th anniversary of German settlements in the South Caucasus Region (Migration of the Schwab Germans to Azerbaijan and Georgia) (Azerbaijan and Georgia, with the support of Germany) (2016)

Beyond the celebration of German settlers in Azerbaijan and Georgia, this anniversary outlines a relevant aspect of the encounter among peoples from different cultural and religious backgrounds and the interaction that emerged, that will be celebrated with commemoration events in Azerbaijan, Georgia and in Germany. In the context of globalized and increasingly diverse societies with growing challenges to peaceful coexistence, this celebration carries a strong message of openness to the Other, of tolerance and respect of diversity and difference. It will particularly contribute to promoting intercultural and interreligious dialogue for better mutual understanding and peace, echoing in this regard the objectives of the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022), for which UNESCO is the lead United Nations agency.

2016 Greece

Aristotle was one of the most emblematic and influential philosophers of humanity. He helped shape the intellectual life of Europe and laid the theoretical foundations for the idea of Democracy and the establishment of the Constitutions in Europe and in the United States; he continues to be present in the intellectual evolution of Western civilization, as an essential part of its cultural heritage. He is a figure of unquestionable universal significance with the anniversary of which UNESCO should be associated.

2016 Greece

2400th anniversary of the birth of Aristotle, philosopher and scientist (384 BCE -322 BCE) (with the support of Cyprus, Poland and Serbia) (2016)

Aristotle was one of the most emblematic and influential philosophers of humanity. He helped shape the intellectual life of Europe and laid the theoretical foundations for the idea of Democracy and the establishment of the Constitutions in Europe and in the United States; he continues to be present in the intellectual evolution of Western civilization, as an essential part of its cultural heritage. He is a figure of unquestionable universal significance with the anniversary of which UNESCO should be associated.

2016 Hungary

Saint Martin, 316 AD in Savaria in the Diocese of Pannonia (now Szombathely, Hungary)-397 AD Candes-Saint-Martin, Gaul (France) was Bishop of Tours, becoming famous for dedicating his life to charity and healing work, and human solidarity.
Saint Martin is one of the most influential personalities of Christianity. His life’s work – notably his charity and healing work – and his modesty is inspiring believers and non-believers as he contributed greatly to the moral solidarity of humanity. An example of his tenacity shows in his dedication to free prisoners.
Saint Martin is a role model in respect of charity work and modesty. His actions are often retold with educational purpose and have become an integral part of the local folklore. He was one of the first non-martyrs to be publicly venerated as a saint.
The actions of Saint Martin inspired several artworks and traditions.

2016 Hungary

1700th anniversary of the birth of Saint Martin, bishop (316-397) (with the support of Austria, Croatia, Malta, Portugal and Slovenia) (2016)

Saint Martin, 316 AD in Savaria in the Diocese of Pannonia (now Szombathely, Hungary)-397 AD Candes-Saint-Martin, Gaul (France) was Bishop of Tours, becoming famous for dedicating his life to charity and healing work, and human solidarity.
Saint Martin is one of the most influential personalities of Christianity. His life’s work – notably his charity and healing work – and his modesty is inspiring believers and non-believers as he contributed greatly to the moral solidarity of humanity. An example of his tenacity shows in his dedication to free prisoners.
Saint Martin is a role model in respect of charity work and modesty. His actions are often retold with educational purpose and have become an integral part of the local folklore. He was one of the first non-martyrs to be publicly venerated as a saint.
The actions of Saint Martin inspired several artworks and traditions.

2016 India

Dr Homi Jahangir Bhabha was an Indian nuclear physicist and the founding Director of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) and the Trombay Atomic Energy Establishment. He established the Cosmic Ray Research Unit at the Indian Institute of Science and began to work on the theory of the movement of point particles. In addition, he served as president of the United Nations Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy in Geneva in 1955.
Dr Bhabha derived a correct expression for the probability of scattering positrons by electrons, a process now known as Bhabha scattering. His major contribution included his work on Compton scattering, R-process, and furthermore the advancement of nuclear physics. He was awarded Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 1954; he served as the member of the Indian Cabinet’s Scientific Advisory Committee and provided the pivotal role to Vikram Sarabhai to set up the Indian National Committee for Space Research.
Therefore, the celebration of this anniversary effectively contributes to the goals of UNESCO Member States.

2016 India

50th anniversary of the death of Dr Homi Jehangir Bhabha, scientist (1909-1966) (2016)

Dr Homi Jahangir Bhabha was an Indian nuclear physicist and the founding Director of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR) and the Trombay Atomic Energy Establishment. He established the Cosmic Ray Research Unit at the Indian Institute of Science and began to work on the theory of the movement of point particles. In addition, he served as president of the United Nations Conference on the Peaceful Uses of Atomic Energy in Geneva in 1955.
Dr Bhabha derived a correct expression for the probability of scattering positrons by electrons, a process now known as Bhabha scattering. His major contribution included his work on Compton scattering, R-process, and furthermore the advancement of nuclear physics. He was awarded Padma Bhushan by the Government of India in 1954; he served as the member of the Indian Cabinet’s Scientific Advisory Committee and provided the pivotal role to Vikram Sarabhai to set up the Indian National Committee for Space Research.
Therefore, the celebration of this anniversary effectively contributes to the goals of UNESCO Member States.

2016 India

The International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE) of 1959-1965 was one of the greatest international, interdisciplinary oceanographic undertakings of all time embracing physical and chemical oceanography, meteorology, marine biology, marine geology and geophysics. Forty-six research vessels under 13 different flags undertook research that extended over 320 cruise months, including an unprecedented number of hydrographic surveys (and repeat surveys) that covered the entire Indian Ocean basin. They were supported by research facilities ashore.
Co-sponsored by UNESCO and the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR), IIOE pinpointed the need for dynamic and coordinated intergovernmental action and resulted in the recommendation of the Copenhagen Conference in July 1960 that the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) be established, within the framework of UNESCO, with the task of promoting concerted action of Member States in the field of oceanographic research.
The IOC Assembly at its 27th session in June 2013 endorsed the Second International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE-2) as IIOE 50th Anniversary Initiative for the period 2015-2020. The IIOE-2 Interim Planning Committee co-sponsored by SCOR, IOC, and the Indian Ocean Global Ocean System agrees that new frontiers of knowledge lie in the domains of Indian Ocean oceanographic and coupled climatic processes and marine ecosystems. Focusing on these scientific challenges and capitalizing on technological advancements since the original IIOE, makes it possible to address a number of key socio-economic and environmental issues of prime interest to Indian Ocean rim and island countries as well as adjacent regions. International collaboration and capacity-building would facilitate the exchange of information and lead to associated benefits for a wider circle of stakeholders. The IOC Assembly at its 28th session in June 2015 further reviewed and endorsed the proposal for IIOE-2, including its launch at Goa, India, on 4 December 2015, thanks to the generous offers of India and Australia to support the IIOE-2 by hosting a new International Project Office in Hyderabad and by continuing the coordination function of the Perth Programme Office, respectively.

2016 India

50th anniversary of the International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE) for conducting experiments on ocean research for the period 1962-65 (2016)

The International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE) of 1959-1965 was one of the greatest international, interdisciplinary oceanographic undertakings of all time embracing physical and chemical oceanography, meteorology, marine biology, marine geology and geophysics. Forty-six research vessels under 13 different flags undertook research that extended over 320 cruise months, including an unprecedented number of hydrographic surveys (and repeat surveys) that covered the entire Indian Ocean basin. They were supported by research facilities ashore.
Co-sponsored by UNESCO and the Scientific Committee on Oceanic Research (SCOR), IIOE pinpointed the need for dynamic and coordinated intergovernmental action and resulted in the recommendation of the Copenhagen Conference in July 1960 that the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) be established, within the framework of UNESCO, with the task of promoting concerted action of Member States in the field of oceanographic research.
The IOC Assembly at its 27th session in June 2013 endorsed the Second International Indian Ocean Expedition (IIOE-2) as IIOE 50th Anniversary Initiative for the period 2015-2020. The IIOE-2 Interim Planning Committee co-sponsored by SCOR, IOC, and the Indian Ocean Global Ocean System agrees that new frontiers of knowledge lie in the domains of Indian Ocean oceanographic and coupled climatic processes and marine ecosystems. Focusing on these scientific challenges and capitalizing on technological advancements since the original IIOE, makes it possible to address a number of key socio-economic and environmental issues of prime interest to Indian Ocean rim and island countries as well as adjacent regions. International collaboration and capacity-building would facilitate the exchange of information and lead to associated benefits for a wider circle of stakeholders. The IOC Assembly at its 28th session in June 2015 further reviewed and endorsed the proposal for IIOE-2, including its launch at Goa, India, on 4 December 2015, thanks to the generous offers of India and Australia to support the IIOE-2 by hosting a new International Project Office in Hyderabad and by continuing the coordination function of the Perth Programme Office, respectively.

2016 Iran (Islamic Republic of)

Muhammad Zakariya Razi, the renowned Persian physician, chemist and philosopher was born in Ray, in the Southern part of the Iranian capital, Tehran, in 866 AD. His works in medicine, chemistry and philosophy gained world renown to the extent that George Sarton, the founder of the history of science, named him “The Greatest Physician of Eastern World and the Medieval Ages”. His discoveries of Alcohol and Sulphuric Acid brought him the world title of “The Father of Chemistry”. In addition to Chemistry, Razi had world fame in Medical sciences. His knowledge in this area of science was such that in order to write his Canon of Medicine, Avicenna used Razi’s book of “al-Hawi fi al-Tibb” as reference. Razi was the first to differentiate smallpox from measles.
Razi played a significant role in promoting knowledge across borders. He contributed to the evolution of medical sciences, chemistry and philosophy in the world, and beyond doubt, Razi is an important figure of ninth-century science, history and medicine.

2016 Iran (Islamic Republic of)

1150th anniversary of the birth of Muhammad Zakariyā Rāzī (also known by his Latinized name: Rhazes or Rasis), physician, chemist and philosopher (866-925) (joint nomination by Iran (Islamic Republic of) and Tajikistan) (2016)

Muhammad Zakariya Razi, the renowned Persian physician, chemist and philosopher was born in Ray, in the Southern part of the Iranian capital, Tehran, in 866 AD. His works in medicine, chemistry and philosophy gained world renown to the extent that George Sarton, the founder of the history of science, named him “The Greatest Physician of Eastern World and the Medieval Ages”. His discoveries of Alcohol and Sulphuric Acid brought him the world title of “The Father of Chemistry”. In addition to Chemistry, Razi had world fame in Medical sciences. His knowledge in this area of science was such that in order to write his Canon of Medicine, Avicenna used Razi’s book of “al-Hawi fi al-Tibb” as reference. Razi was the first to differentiate smallpox from measles.
Razi played a significant role in promoting knowledge across borders. He contributed to the evolution of medical sciences, chemistry and philosophy in the world, and beyond doubt, Razi is an important figure of ninth-century science, history and medicine.

2016 Iran (Islamic Republic of)

Seyyed Morteza Alamolhoda was a renowned Persian scientist who had an important role in promoting ethical and religious teachings in the world of Islam. In his efforts to eradicate ignorance, he played an important role in linking the different branches and schools of thought of Islam. He was personally a Shia scholar but he was in a very close and active cooperation with Sunni and even with non-Muslim scholars.
A most important objective of the nominated personality was to teach ethics and humanitarian principles in an attempt to eradicate prejudice and to empower the spirit of equity and tolerance. The celebration could help outline the “important role in promoting ethical and religious teachings in the world of Islam”, particularly useful in the current global context with the rise of extremism and intolerance grounded on culture, religion or beliefs. The contribution to the work of UNESCO and the United Nations for the promotion of interreligious dialogue may also be considered, particularly with respect to diversity in Islam.

2016 Iran (Islamic Republic of)

1050th anniversary of the birth of Seyyed Morteza Alamolhoda, scientist (966-1044) (with the support of Iraq and Lebanon) (2016)

Seyyed Morteza Alamolhoda was a renowned Persian scientist who had an important role in promoting ethical and religious teachings in the world of Islam. In his efforts to eradicate ignorance, he played an important role in linking the different branches and schools of thought of Islam. He was personally a Shia scholar but he was in a very close and active cooperation with Sunni and even with non-Muslim scholars.
A most important objective of the nominated personality was to teach ethics and humanitarian principles in an attempt to eradicate prejudice and to empower the spirit of equity and tolerance. The celebration could help outline the “important role in promoting ethical and religious teachings in the world of Islam”, particularly useful in the current global context with the rise of extremism and intolerance grounded on culture, religion or beliefs. The contribution to the work of UNESCO and the United Nations for the promotion of interreligious dialogue may also be considered, particularly with respect to diversity in Islam.

2016 Kazakhstan

The ancient city of Almaty and the territory of the Zhetysu area were the regional centre of urbanization processes for over one thousand years. Based on archaeological data, numismatic materials, as well as written sources, Almaty of Х-ХIII centuries was the centre of political, economic and cultural life of Karakhanidian, then Chagataidian khanate. Location of Almaty along the Silk Roads stimulated development of the city life, economy, monetary circulation, communications which led to the interaction of different cultures and religions. The Government of Kazakhstan pays great attention to the 1000th anniversary of the Almaty city, especially within the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022). The celebration will strengthen regional and intercultural value of ancient Almaty situated along the Silk Roads.

2016 Kazakhstan

1000th anniversary of the city of Almaty, former capital of Kazakhstan (until 1997) and at present cultural, educational, scientific and financial centre (with the support of Azerbaijan and the Russian Federation) (2016)

The ancient city of Almaty and the territory of the Zhetysu area were the regional centre of urbanization processes for over one thousand years. Based on archaeological data, numismatic materials, as well as written sources, Almaty of Х-ХIII centuries was the centre of political, economic and cultural life of Karakhanidian, then Chagataidian khanate. Location of Almaty along the Silk Roads stimulated development of the city life, economy, monetary circulation, communications which led to the interaction of different cultures and religions. The Government of Kazakhstan pays great attention to the 1000th anniversary of the Almaty city, especially within the International Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures (2013-2022). The celebration will strengthen regional and intercultural value of ancient Almaty situated along the Silk Roads.

2016 Kazakhstan

Alikhan Bukeikhan is a leading scientist-encyclopaedist, a distinguished public figure who initiated the creation of the modern Kazakh culture. The celebration shall contribute to the promotion of the history, culture and identity of the people of Kazakhstan, echoing to some extent the objectives of the Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures, which was initiated by this country.

2016 Kazakhstan

150th anniversary of the birth of Alikhan Bukeikhan, public figure, statesman, scientist (1866-1937) (with the support of Azerbaijan) (2016)

Alikhan Bukeikhan is a leading scientist-encyclopaedist, a distinguished public figure who initiated the creation of the modern Kazakh culture. The celebration shall contribute to the promotion of the history, culture and identity of the people of Kazakhstan, echoing to some extent the objectives of the Decade for the Rapprochement of Cultures, which was initiated by this country.