African Creative Economy Conference Looks To Culture For Development


The African Creative Economy Conference which will take place from 6 – 9 October, 2013 at the City Hall in Cape Town, is vital for the advancement of the continent.

With the theme, “Culture as a vector of development”,  the Conference seeks to find solutions to the social ills currently facing Africa.

And the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) adopted by world leaders in 2000 are relevant particularly to Africa with its key challenges of poverty, infant mortality, poor education, life-threatening diseases, high maternal mortality and lack of sanitation and access to clean water.

The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) has been at the forefront of advocating culture as an integral dimension of sustainable development.

With the deadline for the MDGs looming in 2015, UNESCO co-hosted a conference with the Chinese government in Hangzhou recently with the theme: Culture and Sustainable Development.  The aim of the conference was to affirm arguments in favour of the importance of culture within development strategies
and to ensure that culture is integrated into a post-2015 Development Agenda.

Some of the question being asked include: But what does culture as a vector of development mean?  Does culture not also prevent or limit development e.g. polygamous cultures (all over the world) that might facilitate the spread of HIV/AIDS?  Does development sometimes not change culture for the better, for an example, in the way that women are treated?  Is the major contemporary contribution of culture to development at the moment the creative industries and their capacity to employ people? Is development itself not premised on particular cultural values, ideas and world views that may not be relevant or sensitive to the culture of the supposed beneficiaries of development?


The Conference is to debate such issues and work towards a position rooted in African experience that informs an understanding of the relationship between culture and development, and which may underpin a post-2015 development agenda.

Speakers at Conference of mainly thought leaders include keynote speaker DrIsrael Kodiaga, director of programmes research and strategic development at the African Centre for International Studies. Dr Kodiaga’s areas of interest include theories of conflict in Africa, conflict management styles, cycles and trends. He will discuss drivers and beneficiaries of African economic growth.

Panelists includeProfessor Lorenzo Fioramonti, Associate Professor of International Political Economy at the Universityof Pretoriaand Associate Fellow at the United Nations University, Belgium.  Professor Fioramonti will be on the panel discussing Key players in the African economy: potential impacts and meanings: China, Europe, USA, BRICS, Nigeriaand South Africa.

Dr Ammar Kessabis a governance expert at the African Development Bank. A specialist in public management, he regularly collaborates with international organizations in the field of financial management on the cultural sector, culture and development and cultural policies. He will join a panel discussing The private sector, the arts, creative and cultural industries in Africa: what’s in it for them?

To register Visit the website
Registration fees
* Category 1: R 4,497 per delegate from Europe, North America, Australia, New Zealandand the Middle East
* Category 2: R 3,278 per delegate from Central America, South Americaand Asia
* Category 3: R 2,239 per delegate from Africa

The registration fee includes conference information and entrance to a welcome cocktail event, and a gala concert ticket. From Monday to Wednesday the cost includes all day refreshments and lunch and access to all conference sessions. The conference ends with a free closing party, including a welcome

Contact details
For any enquiries please contact Kim Peters at +27 (0)21 674 0013 or;

or Jeanne Hefez (Arterial Network) at
For media-related inquiries please email Judy Bryant at

Find out more on the
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