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Cultural Rights

What does the right to culture include?
There is no simple definition for the right to culture. However, theright to express and enjoy one???s culture does exist. Internationalorganizations and documents are quick to name ???culture??? as an importantright, even though what that means hasn???t been fully developed byinternational law. The Covenant on ESCR recognizeseveryone's right to take part in cultural life, to enjoy the benefitsof scientific progress, and encourages the development of internationalcontacts and co-operation in the area of science and culture. Therights of indigenous peoples is a first step towards legal recognitionof cultural rights.

Below is a list of links involving the right to culture. The widevariety of organizations dealing with cultural rights helps todemonstrate how important it is to guarantee the human right to culture.

Legal Instruments

Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage

Convention on the Means of Prohibiting and Preventing the Illicit Import, Export and Transfer of Ownership of Cultural Property

Declaration on Race and Racial Prejudice

Declaration of the Principles of International Cultural Co-operation

Draft United Nations declaration on the rights of indigenous peoples

Florence Agreement of 1950 and the 1976 Nairobi Protocol

International Covenant on Economic, Social & Cultural Rights

Recommendationconcerning Education for International Understanding, Co-operation andPeace and Education relating to Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms

Recommendation concerning the Status of the Artist

Universal Copyright Convention

UNESCO Universal Declaration on Cultural Diversity ??? 2001

Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Vienna Declaration and Program of Action


United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), Culture Section
UNESCO promotes international co-operationamong its 190 Member States and six Associate Members in the fields ofeducation, science, culture and communication.

Aga Khan Trust for Culture
The Trust focuses on the physical, social, cultural and economic revitalisation of communities in the Muslim world.

Aid to Artisans
Aid to Artisans is a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating economic opportunities for craftspeople in developing nations.

Artists and organizations working on political art
This is a list of links to political artists and organizations focusing on political art, from a conference on political art.

Asian Cultural Council
The Asian Cultural Council is a foundation supporting cultural exchangein the visual and performing arts between the United States and thecountries of Asia.

Americans for the Arts
Americans for the Arts is a nonprofit organization dedicated toadvancing the arts in America. It represents and serves localcommunities, and creates opportunities for every American toparticipate in and appreciate all forms of the arts.

Arab Artists Resources and Training
Arab Artists Resources and Training is committed to helpingcareer-track artists creating fine art in all styles and media tosupport themselves exclusively by networking together and teaching themhow to find and receive grants to help promote their Arab culturalheritage.

Bosnian Handicrafts
Bosnian Handicrafts (BH) is a non-profit, non-governmental organizationthat works to improve the lives of people from Bosnia and Herzegovinaby selling traditional crafts through its online catalog.

Center for Arts and Culture
The Center for Arts and Culture aims to inform and improve policydecisions that affect cultural life. The guiding principles of thatmission include freedom of imagination, inquiry and expression, as wellas freedom of opportunity for all to participate in a vital and diverseculture.

Central Asian Crafts Support Association
An online catalog including a variety of traditional and contemporaryarts and crafts handmade by talented but disadvantaged artisans andcraftspeople living in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan,Turkmenistan, and Tajikistan.

CinemaBrasil fights for more space for Brazilian and other countries'films inside the movie and TV programs, instead of present 90%+occupation of north-american films. CinemaBrasil is one of the 29founders of the organization CBC-Brazilian Congress of Cinema, which has instigated govern to create an agency and a Council to regulate abuses of the market.

Craft Link
Craft Link is a non profit organization in Hanoi that works withcraftspeople. The Craft Link development and design team implementincome-generating projects for handicrafts producers.

Crafts Council of India
CCI strives to fulfill the needs ofcraftspersons, protect craft traditions and provide a bridge betweenIndia's craft heritage and the challenges of a contemporary milieu. CCI is dedicated to the revival and perpetuation of craft skills.

Cultural Heritage Watch
CHW was established by a small group ofvolunteers in China to raise the awareness of Chinese communities andgovernment authorities about the importance of protecting the nation???srich cultural heritage, and to provide them with knowledge and tools totranslate awareness into constructive action.

Danish Center for Culture and Development
DCCD promotes cultural co-operation betweenDenmark and the developing countries in Africa, Asia, the Caribbean,Latin America, and the Middle East. DCCD answers to the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Etnia is a Portuguese not-for-profit co-operative, founded in 1988 andaiming to promote traditional music and cultures of the world inPortugal and beyond. Though putting a natural emphasis on Portugueseand Latin culture, the organisation has always based its activity upona clear concern of furthering the multiculturalism and the north-southdialogue, using culture as a tool for reciprocal and multiple discoveryand respect for minorities and cultures.

Georgian Cultural Heritage Information Centre
According to UNESCO, the GCHIC is an NGO aimedat obtaining and keeping archive of the qualified information ondiverse branches of the Georgian cultural heritage, as well as ensuringaccessibility and availability of this information through scholarlyand popular publications, exhibitions, electronic network, etc.

International Centre for the Study of the Preservation and Restoration of Cultural Property
ICCROM was established in Rome in 1959. Ithas a world-wide mandate to promote the conservation of all types ofcultural heritage, both movable and immovable. It currently comprisesover 100 Member States.

The International Council of Museums
ICOM is an international organisation ofmuseums and museum professionals which is committed to theconservation, continuation and communication to society of the world'snatural and cultural heritage, present and future, tangible andintangible.

International Council on Archives
The mission of the ICA isadvancement of archives worldwide. Archives safeguard the memory ofhumankind by preserving records of its past. In pursuing theadvancement of archives, ICA works for the protection and enhancement of the memory of the world.

International Council on Monuments and Sites
ICOMOS is an international non-governmentalorganization of professionals, dedicated to the conservation of theworld's historic monuments and sites.

International Theatre Institute
ITI was founded in Prague in 1948 by UNESCO and the international theatre community. The ITI has national ITI centres in approximately 90 countries. The ITI maintains formal associate relations with UNESCO and is its principal international NGO partner in the field of the performing arts.

Instituto Pensarte
Instituto Pensarte is a Brazilian organization with an emphasis on research of Brazilian cultural policies and development.

Kala Raksha
Kala Raksha is an NGO locatedin the village Sumrasar Sheikh, 25 km from Bhuj, in the desert regionof Kutch in India. The Trust's mission is to preserve and protecttraditional arts, primarily through assisting artisan cooperatives.

Lamia Mediterranean Music Centre
The Lamia Centre organizes a composition competition (withparticipation from Mediterranean countries) and festivals with specificthemes. It also conducts research, publishes and holds workshops onproducing traditional musical instruments, and the relationship betweenmusical traditions of Mediterranean countries.

National MultiCultural Institute
The NMCI is a U.S. based NGO founded in 1983. It provides services, knowledge, and skills in the growing field of multiculturalism and diversity.

New York Foundation for the Arts
The NYFA isa state-wide service organization for artists that provides this freenational information resource for artists in all disciplines and forthose who support them in any way.

Organization of World Heritage Cities
The OWHC represents 203 cities that have sites included on the UNESCOWorld Heritage List. The organization helps implement the WorldHeritage Convention through symposia and seminars on the developmentand preservation of historic sites.

Pacific Islanders' Cultural Association
The Pacific Islanders' Cultural Association was formed in 1995 as anumbrella organization, to meet the common needs of all Pacificislanders in Northern California. It is comprised of interestedvolunteers and members of clubs rooted in a wide range of interestsincluding outrigger canoes, music, dance, language, history, folk arts,foods, and athletics.

Siberian Association of Prehistoric Art Researchers
SAPAR was organized and registered in november 1997, with the University of Kemerovo as its base. The main aim of SAPAR is to contribute in every way to the study, preservation and popularization of prehistoric art.

Society for Cross-Cultural Research
SCCR is an organization of about 200 membersdevoted to pursuing cross-cultural research from a multidisciplinaryperspective. The Society includes Psychologists, Anthropologists,Sociologists, other social scientists, and members of other disciplinessuch as Communications, Business, and Education.

Society for Intercultural Education, Training and Research
SIETAR-USA is a professional membershiporganization for people from many cultural and professional backgroundsthat promotes and facilitates intercultural education, training, andresearch through professional interchange.

Swedish Joint Committ??e for Artistic and Literary Professionals
An umbrella for 18 artist organisations representing about 30 000individual members. Their main task is to protect the importance ofculture in society, to work for better access to culture and tosafeguard the artists?? right to fair compensation for their work.

Tibetan Cultural Center
The Center, located on a 90-acre site in Bloomington, Indiana, grew outof an active university and community involvement with Tibetan culture.It was established not only to acquaint people with the history andculture of Tibet, but also to support Tibetans everywhere, both inTibet and in exile, and to preserve Tibetan culture through educationaland philosophical endeavors.

Women's Intercultural Network
WIN is an international non-profit organization based in San Francisco, California, USA, that links women and girls across cultures, globally and in US communities. WIN createssettings and opportunities for women and girls to come together toexchange ideas and skills in professional, economic and politicalleadership and to foster better understanding for cross-culturalrelationships.

Woodland Cultural Centre
The WCC isa First Nations organization located on Six Nation's land in Brantford,Ontario. It provides a variety of services which reflecting its valuesin respect to culture, history and heritage. Its mandate is educationalin nature and it offers programs to member First Nations and to thegeneral public. The Centre takes an integrated approach to culture andheritage, recognizing that contemporary life styles are rooted inancient traditions.