Comparative study of the impact of digital issues on the implementation of the 2005 Convention in Latin America and Spain

Under the framework of the implementation of the 2005 Convention, Octavio Kulesz, a member of the UNESCO Expert Facility is undertaking a regional study in Argentina, Colombia, Ecuador, Spain and Mexico, funded by the Government of Spain, that will incorporate the perspectives of artists, entrepreneurs in cultural sectors and various public sector representatives, and Ministers of Culture in particular.

This study will enable the relevant players to have their say and will provide information on the current state of public policy, the existence of relevant indicators, knowledge of the market and of consumption habits, relations between institutions and bodies devoted to digital and cultural matters, the presence and strength of specific undertakings and initiatives and the challenges and obstacles associated, either directly or indirectly, with contemporary culture in the digital age, among other fundamental issues.

Over the course of the investigation, therefore, Octavio Kulesz visited Colombia and Ecuador between 17 February and 4 March 2016, summarising and structuring the background to the implementation of the 2005 Convention in its digital aspects. The consultant conducted interviews with key players in the cultural and technological spheres, including the Culture Sector of the UNESCO Office in Quito which represents Bolivia, Colombia, Ecuador and Venezuela, with a view to obtaining an overview of the impact of digital issues on Colombia and Ecuador from the point of view of this regional office.

The impact of digital issues has become one of the main topics dealt with during recent meetings of the Conference of Parties and the Intergovernmental Committee of the 2005 Convention. December 2015 saw the presentation of the Global Report on the 2005 Convention: Reshaping cultural policies, which has demonstrated its application through four objectives relating to good governance systems, the balanced flow of cultural goods and services, the mobility of artists and cultural professionals and the integration of culture into sustainable development frameworks, and the promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms. The report includes a chapter entitled 'Challenges of the digital age', in which Kulesz analyses the impact of digital issues on the diversity of cultural expressions.

UNESCO is undertaking extensive work with the aim of supporting the implementation of the 2005 Convention and achieving the Sustainable Development Objectives and the 2030 Agenda, in which culture plays an important role in driving the economies of developing countries, promoting the circulation of cultural goods and services in all their diversity, and becoming a contributory factor in sustainable development. In this respect, regulatory documents, such as the 2005 Convention, and technical documents, such as the Global Report on the 2005 Convention: Reshaping cultural policies provide its Member States with guidelines and a technical guide to develop and drive their creative economies.

About the consultant:

Octavio Kulesz is an expert in cultural publications living in Buenos Aires, Argentina. With more than 15 years of experience in the publishing industry, in 2007 he founded Teseo, one of the first e-book companies in Latin America. Kulesz is also a researcher on topics relating to e-books, social media and digital culture in emerging economies. In 2011 he published the renowned report entitled 'Digital publishing in developing countries', available at http://alliance-lab.org/etude/wp-content/uploads/digital_publishing.pdf. Since 2012 he has been one of the coordinators of the Digital Laboratory of the International Alliance of Independent Publishers, based in París.

UNESCO Quito Office