There can be no power without culture: Forum d’Avignon

New Delhi, May 10 (IANS) Governments and businesses cannot build a sound future without co-opting the $2.7 trillion creative and culture industry that accounts for 6.1 percent of the world’s output and eight million direct jobs, says a leading think tank that seeks to promote cultural diversity.

Paris-based think tank Forum d’Avignon said it will organise an international meeting from Nov 21-23 this year that will highlight the importance of coordination between governments and businesses to promote culture.

The meeting to be held in Avignon, south of France, will aim to put culture at the heart of politics and business by debating on the “powers of culture.”

Over 400 committed people, including artists, businesspersons, writers, professors, film directors, philosophers, students and representatives of creative and cultural industry will come together to debate these issues, Forum d’Avignon said in a statement.

The meeting is being organised in partnership with the European Centre for the Creative Economy.

“While the contribution of culture and creative industries to economic development is now widely acknowledged, the feeling of decline of political commitment in the cultural field is growing, especially in Europe,” Forum d’Avignon said.

“This phenomenon is rooted in a context of budgetary pressures, holding the risk of a trivialisation of both creation and creative industries.”

The Forum d’Avignon calls for revitalising cultural diversity as the foundation of democratic debate and springboard for new public policies.

“Political impetus is vital to dream and build. This is also essential to the dynamism of firms for which creation is a source of innovation cardinal.” the forum said.

“Finally, the cohesion of territories and of civil society is up to the symbolical and almost magical power of culture which should not be reduced to its economic strength,” it added.

The Forum d’Avignon was created in 2007 after the ratification of the UNESCO convention on cultural diversity, and since its beginning, has been backed by the French Ministry of Culture and Communication.

Between 2013 and 2015, the Forum seeks to highlight the singularity of culture and its role in social cohesion, dialogue between nations and economic ripple effect.

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