Unesco sites such as Dundee will be vital in creating a greener and fairer society, a new report has stated.
Unesco projects in the UK generated an estimated £151 million in 2018 while protecting some of the most important parts of the country.
The UK National Commission for Unesco worked on the report which examined the cultural, environmental and financial benefits Unesco projects bring to UK life.
Dundee was named a Unesco city of design in 2014, at the time joining 16 other global cities. Today, there are 40 Unesco cities of design and Dundee sits alongside places such as Detroit, Istanbul, Kobe and Helsinki.
The report states the economic boost was partly brought about through increased visitor numbers and a resultant rise in spending.
Since the City of Discovery was included in the Unesco list, the Dundee Design Festival has helped showcased local talent. Other initiatives include a design parade launched in 2018.
Dundee City Council leader John Alexander said: “The designation of Dundee back in 2014 was an important milestone on our journey to becoming an internationally-recognised hub of creativity and culture.
“Unesco statues provides global promotion of the city, its culture and businesses. Being attached to the Unesco brand opens up possibilities for increased investment and employment, as well as building international connections and delivering a programme of events which appeal to locals and visitors alike.
“As this report makes clear, Unesco projects bring a range of cultural, environmental and financial benefits. It’s great to see Dundee being recognised within it is a cultural hotspot.”
Annie Marrs, lead officer of the Unesco City of Design Dundee team, highlighted the benefits the status brings to Dundee.
She said: “Being connected to all these other places means we have a shared commitment to showcasing each other, and connecting our designers internationally.
“Over the last five years, we’ve had students from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design win awards at Shenzhen Young Talents, had Dundee selected as a ‘guest city’ at the Bilbao Design Week showing Print City and Shpeel and designer Louise Kirby’s pedestrian crossing design inspired by Dundee Cake was painted on a street in Puebla, Mexico.”
Audrey Azoulay, Unesco director-general, said: “At a time when we all look for solutions to build more resilient societies after Covid-19, Unesco sites offer a wealth of concrete actions to reinvent our relationship with nature, to develop decent jobs and foster social cohesion.
“This report is a blueprint for sustainability, and I believe all counties can take inspiration from this research.”
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