World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development

By: Hadia Hajo
Editor and Publications Specialist
cultural diversity

On May 21 of each year, the world celebrates the World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development, an international event launched by the United Nations General Assembly in 2002 to promote the role of culture and intercultural dialogue in achieving sustainable development and world peace. This World Day is an opportunity to celebrate the diversity of the world's cultures in all its forms, including tangible and intangible cultural heritage as well as various forms of cultural and creative expression. This day gained special importance after the United Nations adopted the 2030 Sustainable Development Goals, because achieving the 17 goals for sustainable development depends primarily on the need for the different cultures of the world to engage in dialogue for development, achieving international peace, strengthening bonds of mutual understanding, and benefiting all the world’s population from sustainable development in its various economic, environmental, and social forms.

As for the role of culture in achieving peace, according to the United Nations three-quarters of the world's conflicts have cultural dimensions. Therefore, achieving international peace requires a dialogue that respects the culture of the other, which can bridge the gap between cultures to achieve social, psychological, and intellectual stability and help the residents of societies to live more peaceful and prosperous lives. Modern information and communication technology, media channels, and social media provide an opportunity for creators to create a cultural dialogue between civilizations through the use of these tools to reflect their own culture and communicate it to the world. This contributes to introducing different cultures to one another and achieving mutual understanding and respect, and helps in accepting and acknowledging cultural diversity.

Qatar National Library includes a wide range of books and resources in several languages ​​that shed light on the various cultures of the world. These contribute to promoting dialogue and cultural exchange, and introduce the intellectual, literary, and creative output and cultural heritage of various civilizations. The Library also includes a group of Innovation Stations that provide a fertile environment for creators to express their creativity through photography, photo montage, video editing, recording and audio editing. There are also 3D printing devices and other creative tools for the manufacture and modeling of different designs and the production of different outputs of creative and cultural expressions.

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