Giving Artists a Voice – UNESCO hosts a 4-day training session on Periodic Reporting on the Implementation of the 2005 Convention in Cambodia

Building on partnerships to give artists a voice and promoting creative industries are at the heart of Cambodia’s national culture policy adopted in July 2014.

The strategy, which took shape in view of the UNESCO’s 2005 Convention, outlines support for the arts, performance and film industries in Cambodia – with a need for better partnerships and cooperation between national authorities and civil society supported by international partners. 

The defined collaboration between the Cambodian Living Arts NGO and Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts Arts through a Memorandum of Understanding  is a clear sign of readiness of the artists to have a say in the cultural policy-formulation and implementation and  one of the starting points for partnerships. The NGO is well known for its mission to facilitate the transformation of Cambodia through the arts by promoting awareness of the arts, advocating for the arts with cultural policymakers and major institutions.and  promoting arts education in the country by supporting, writers, artists and performers

To help seize better opportunities for the country’s creative industries, the Ministry of Culture and Fine Arts and UNESCO Office in Phnom Penh, with the financial support from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency (Sida), organized a consultative workshop on 28-31 March 2016. Cultural professionals were guided on preparing the periodic report on the implementation of the UNESCO 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.

As a State Party to the 2005 Convention, Cambodia already submitted its periodic report in April 2013 and cultural practitioners are now in the process of tracking what has been achieved in its creative industries to help build on its existing policies.

Working with international experts, Ms. Milena Dragicevic Šešic and Ms. Vesna Čopič, a national team identified policies making an impact in the creative field. They identified a number of policies making a difference. For example, the efforts to increase cultural programming - where national television adopted a measure to broadcast a cultural production every day at prime time and once a week for 30 minuites to promote local talent.

The upcoming formation of an Arts Forum – a platform for decision makers, artists and relevant NGOs, was also highlighted as a key challenge.

The 4-day training workshop has strongly contributed to the capacity-building of key participants giving them the skills to produce a more elaborate and comprehensive periodic report on the implementation of the 2005 Convention. 

The team, led by the Ministry of Culture and Fine arts, is starting to share tasks in view of data collection and a public presentation will be organized in November 2016 to review and finalize the draft periodic report which will be submitted to the 2005 Convention Secretary by the end of the year.  

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