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Joint Nordic Conference, 24-25 November 2011 The Future of Development Research: Exploring the Nordic Perspective(s)?. UNESCO Culture for Development Indicator Suite. presented by Patricia Alberth UNESCO World Heritage Centre. Supported by.

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Joint Nordic Conference, 24-25 November 2011

The Future of Development Research:

Exploring the Nordic Perspective(s)?

UNESCO Culture for Development Indicator Suite

presented by

Patricia Alberth

UNESCO World Heritage Centre

Supported by

What is the Culture for Development Indicator Suite?
  • Research and advocacy initiativeto establish a set of macro indicators assessing the culture for development DNA of a country;
  • Added value:first tool that raises awareness of how culture supports the achievement of development goals, including the MDGs;
  • Generates new knowledgeon culture and development through an original methodology that allows a cross-analysis of key policy dimensions;
  • Country-led approach is building awareness and capacityat national level on culture and development links.
  • Highlight culture’s contributions to national development

Demonstrate how culture:

      • contributes to economic growth, social cohesion and resilience
      • enlarges people’s choices and
      • helps individuals and communities to adapt to change

2. Promote an inclusive vision of sustainable development

3.Contribute to the implementation of Article 13 of the Convention for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (Integration of Culture in Sustainable Development)

… by offering to development actors a flexible tool adjusted to

their needs to reposition culture into national strategies and


Responding to international contexts

and national needs

  • Difficulties in quantifying culture’s contribution is leading to its marginalisation in development strategies(1.7% of ODA): culture often left out from UNDAFs
  • The importance of culture for development and to the MDGsrecognized by the international community through 2 UN General Assembly resolutions (65/1 and 65/166, 2010) and the UN SG Report
  • Growing donor recognitionof role of culture for development (AECID, EU-ACP doubling of funds to culture and development …)
  • New key elements available: operational projects (MDG-F); new data on culture showing value-added for development; growing momentum around statistics on culture (e.g. UIS cultural employment survey)
added value of the indicator suite
Added-value ofthe Indicator Suite

Complex policy area

Innovative model

Brings together data from different key policy areas, which when brought together, generates an evidence-based snapshot of the “C&D DNA”

A flexible tool, capable of adapting to different contexts

Cross-analysis across 7 key dimensions of culture & development

Based on national data sources

Does not rank countries

Some elements of comparability

  • Policy area where data isoftenincomplete, many gaps
  • Culture and developmentisdifficult to measurequantitatively
  • Earlierattempts to measure culture through composite indices facedmethodological and conceptual challenges
indicator suite in the field from theory to practice
Indicator Suite in the Field: from theory to practice


Participatory Process

Led by local consultant with a background in statistics, culture and development.

Two national workshops per country, aimed to build consensus around project, raise awareness and interpret the final results

Partnerships with key national institutions (statistical institutes, ministries, research institutes etc.) and development community

  • Inspired by the World Report, Our Creative Diversity (1996)
  • Proposed indicators based on research and consultations with experts (2009)
  • Creation of Methodology Manual
  • First test phase in six countries: Bosnia and Herzegovina, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ghana, Viet Nam and Uruguay (2011)
  • Expert meeting (Oct. 2011)
culture development
Culture & Development

The Suite focuses on the salient features of both concepts in order to

adopt operational definitions and take action:


  • a sector of economic activity
  • a critical factor for fostering social cohesion, resilience and peace
  • A key component adding valueto and increasing the impact of development interventions(transversal)

“Development”encompasses the human, social and economic

development, focusing on capacities of individuals and communities

to expand their choices, foster a sense of well-being and face

processes of change.

Collecting data for each

of the seven dimensions of the Suite

the indicators of the suite
The indicators of the Suite
  • The Suite proposes core indicators for each sub-dimension. Upon national request, options for comparability potential of some core indicators is being explored (e.g. employment, cultural activities)
  • In contexts where data is unattainable, alternative indicators, proposed by national consultants encouraged
  • In contexts with relevant related data, additionalindicators encouraged
Sample data collection table:

Social Participation and Cohesion

After the collection of data ….
  • Cross-dimensional Analysis
  • Creativity, Living together, Cultural cycle, Cultural rights
selected outcomes to date
1. Building national ownership

Test phase targeted local stakeholders whose input ensures that the Suite corresponds to their policy and operational needs, strengthening its impact as a development tool.

Workshops were a fora for interministerial dialogue, contributing to build capacities and creating new interest in investing in statistical systems, with a focus on culture

2. Enhancing national statistical and information systems

Information-sharing and dialogue across ministries and institutes at the national level, enhancing awareness of available data sources

The Suite builds on and strengthens national statistics by approaching and employing existing data through a culture and development lens

3. Generating new valuable data and knowledge

Original methodology (e.g. economy) and transversal questions produced new data and understandings on the role of culture in national development.

Comprehensive overview and cross-analysis of existing data identified new policy opportunities and challenges.

Selected outcomes to date
next steps
Next Steps

Key milestones

Expected Results

Use of the UNESCO Suite in national, regional and international development strategies: PRSPS, Country Assessment Strategies, NIPs, etc.

Greater inclusion of culture in national development strategies and increased investment in culture as an economic sector and important area of international development cooperation

  • Revision of Methodological Manual before 2nd Test Phase
  • 2nd Test Phase: Namibia, Ecuador, Camboda, Burkina Faso, Peru & TBD (Nov. ’11- May ‘12)
  • Harmonization of data and indicators
  • Graphic Software to visualize data
  • 3rd Phase: Implementation Programme (2012)
for more information
For more information

Please contact:

Guiomar Alonso Cano: [email protected]

Melika Medici: [email protected]

Keiko Nowacka: [email protected]