International Conference on the Importance of the Great Silk Roads: Present and Future Development

When, local time: 
Thursday, 6 December 2018 - 9:00am to Friday, 7 December 2018 - 10:00pm
Where: 
Turkmenistan, Ashgabat
Type of Event: 
Meeting by Member States or Institutions
Contact: 
Mehrdad Shabahang, m.shabahang@unesco.org

The Government of Turkmenistan, in partnership with UNESCO, organize an international conference on “Importance of the Great Silk Roads: Present and Future Development” in Ashgabat, Turkmenistan, from 6 to 7 December 2018.

The Silk Roads offer an instructive example of a long-lasting legacy of intercultural exchange, dialogue and cooperation, which serve as the basis for sustainable peace and development. The conference will highlight the common heritage that continues to flourish throughout these regions.

Turkmenistan has been at the crossroads of dynamic encounters and intercultural activity between diverse civilizations. It has also served as an important corridor for commercial exchanges. Revisiting the historical legacy of the Great Silk Roads would open new avenues for fruitful dialogue and collaboration towards sustainable development throughout the Silk Roads regions.

Divided into three sessions, the conference will bring together ministers, high-ranking representatives, and international experts from approximately 48 countries.

It will address the following Silk Roads themes:

- History and Revival of The Great Silk Roads,
- Formation of Plural Identities,
- Innovative Technologies and Approaches to Enhance the Development of Trade and Interconnectivity, and
- Policies and Good Practices towards achieving the UN 2030 Agenda.

The goals of the conference are multi-faceted. The first goal is to highlight the significance of the Great Silk Roads with regards to sustainable development. The next is to discuss the potential of the Silk Roads common heritage in promoting intercultural dialogue and international cooperation in contemporary societies. And, the last is to provide a forum of shared experiences and expertise concerning the contribution of the Silk Roads heritage towards achieving the UN 2030 Agenda.

As the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development highlights culture as an essential tool for strengthening societies, the Silk Roads common heritage could potentially serve as a fulcrum from which to actively promote cultural, political and economic cooperation among Nations along the Silk Roads. The geo-economic potential of nations situated along these historical routes, and their networks of active trade corridors, provide an opportunity to develop new infrastructures that could be a driving force for the global economy.

This conference will follow an Expert Meeting on the Traditional Sports and Games Theme of the Interactive Atlas of Cultural Interactions along the Silk Roads, also taking place in Ashgabat, from 4 to 5 December 2018.