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Around 55 cities join UNESCO Creative Cities Network

01 November 2023 [17:51] - TODAY.AZ
Laman Ismayilova

Around 55 cities have joined the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) On World Cities Day, following their designation by UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay.

New cities were acknowledged for their strong commitment to harnessing culture and creativity as part of their development strategies, and displaying innovative practices in human-centred urban planning, Azernews reports, citing UNESCO.

Founded in 2004, the Network of Creative Cities unites cities based on creativity and considers innovations and creativity as a key factor in order to promote sustainable urban development.

In total, the Network now includes 350 cities in over 100 countries, representing seven creative fields: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music.

"The cities in our Creative Cities Network are leading the way when it comes to enhancing access to culture and galvanizing the power of creativity for urban resilience and development," says Audrey Azoulay, UNESCO Director-General.

An upcoming policy paper – "The added value of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network at the local, national, and international level" – will testify to the leading role played by cities towards the achievement of the 2030 Agenda while demonstrating ways in which UNESCO supports the UCCN members by fostering dialogue, peer-to-peer learning, and collaboration.

The newly designated Creative Cities are invited to participate in the 2024 UCCN Annual Conference, scheduled for July 1–5, 2024. The conference will take place in Braga, Portugal, under the theme "Bringing Youth to the Table for the Next Decade.".

Azerbaijan's cities of Lankaran (2021- Gastronomy), Shaki (2017- Crafts and Folk Art) and Baku (2019- Design) are also listed among the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.

Baku

Azerbaijan's capital is regarded as one of the most beautiful cities located at the confluence of Europe and Asia.

The architecture of the city is simply astonishing.

Back in the early 20th century, Azerbaijan went through its first oil boom, and architects from all over Western Europe were attracted to the city to design buildings for the expanding city.

The result is a charming mix of architectural styles and genuinely beautiful buildings that line the city's traffic-choked streets.

Baku's skyline has grown more cosmopolitan with the addition of modern skyscrapers such as the Heydar Aliyev Centre, the Carpet Museum, and the Flame Towers.

The modern architecture here perfectly co-exist with impressive examples of Azerbaijan's past. The Old City, including the Palace of the Shirvanshahs and Maiden Tower, became the first location in Azerbaijan to be classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.

Shaki

The inclusion of Shaki in the City of Crafts and Folk Art category of the network is not a coincidence. The city has long been illustrated as the centre of crafts and folk art in Azerbaijan, owing to the alluring handicrafts made by the local craftsmen.

Since ancient times, Sheki has been famous for its sericulture and especially for kelagayi, a silk headscarf for women. In addition to silk weaving, here the dyeing of fabrics, the production of chisels, and embroidery developed.

Lankaran

If you visit Azerbaijan, the Land of Fire, you should definitely taste its tea. Lankaran is well-known throughout Azerbaijan for producing the best tea in the country. The subtropical climate of the region is ideal for its growth.

The first tea plantations appeared here in 1896. In 1937, the first packs of Azerbaijani tea were released. In Soviet times, Azerbaijani tea was very popular.

Lankaran is also is famous for its rich and delicious cuisine. Lavangi, Lankaran kulcha, marji plov, white plov, pumpkin plov, and turshu kebab are the best examples of local cuisine.

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