What is the UNESCO Creative Cities Network?

The UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) was created to promote cooperation with and among cities that have identified creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban Development, by placing creativity at the heart of the city development plans at the local level and cooperating actively at the international Level. UNESCO Creative City Network 

This Youtube-video is a short presentation of the UNESCO Creative City Network.  The network is currently formed by 295 Member Cities covering sevn creative fields: Crafts & Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Music and Media Arts.

Bergen was accepted as a member in this network in December 2015 as a City of Gastronomy.

The UNESCO Creative City Network is one of UNESCO’s key partners in implementing the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The Creative Cities Network of UNESCO has two main objectives (spanning all cultural fields, including gastronomy):

  1. Locally: Put creativity at the heart of the city development plans
  2. Internationally: Cities co-operate actively on an international level

Fostering local creativity

UNESCO stresses that it is first and foremost at the local level that culture and creativity are lived and practiced. By working together, public authorities, the private sector and civil society support creation and creators, as well as civic and cultural participation.

By working together, public spaces can always be seen with fresh eyes, and urban development can meet the practical needs of local populations. The city belongs to everyone, and sustainable development is the responsibility of all.

By strengthening the value chain of local creative economies, the Network believes that cities can support, enrich, learn from each other and work together for the sustainable urban development of all.

International collaboration

The 295 Creative Cities join forces to make creativity a driver for sustainable urban development. By increasing their cultural offerings and supporting job creation, the Network fosters vibrant cultural sectors based on social diversity and cohesion, intercultural dialogue, and citizens’ well-being. As a laboratory, the Network reinforces cooperation with and among Creative Cities. It offers unparalleled opportunities for cities, through peer learning processes and collaborative projects, to fully capitalize on their creative assets.

Read more about the Creative City Network here.


The 49 Cities designated «Creative Cities of Gastronomy» has a special role in ensuring food culture, gastronomy and sustainable food has a vital role in the city and regional development plans.

In addition to Bergen, the other Cities of Gastronomy are:

  • Afoyonkarasihar (Turkey)
  • Alba (Italy)
  • Arequipa (Peru)
  • Belém (Brazil)
  • Belo Horizonte (Brazil)
  • Bendigo (Australia)
  • Bergamo (Italy)
  • Bohicon (Benin)
  • Buenaventura (Colombia)
  • Buraidah (Saudi-Arabia)
  • Burgos (Spain)
  • Chengdu (China)
  • Cochabamba (Bolivia)
  • Dénia (Spain)
  • Ensenada (Mexico)
  • Florianopolis (Brazil)
  • Gaziantep (Turkey)
  • Hatay (Turkey)
  • Huai’an (Kina)
  • Hyderabad (India)
  • Jeonju (South Korea)
  • Kermanshah (Iran)
  • Kuching (Malaysia)
  • Lankaran (Aserbajdsjan)
  • Launceston (Australia)
  • Macao (China)
  • Merida (Mexico)
  • Overstrand Hermanus (South Africa)
  • Panama City (Panama)
  • Parma (Italy)
  • Paraty (Brazil)
  • Phetchaburi (Thailand)
  • Phuket (Thailand)
  • Popayàn (Colombia)
  • Portoviejo (Equador)
  • Rasht (Iran [Islamic Republic of])
  • Rouen (Frankrike)
  • San Antonio (United States of America)
  • Saint Petersburg (Russland)
  • Santa Maria da Feira (Portugal)
  • Shunde (China)
  • Thessaloniki (Hellas)
  • Tucson (United States of America)
  • Tsuruoka (Japan)
  • Usuki (Japan)
  • Yangzhou (China)
  • Zahlé (Lebanon)
  • Östersund (Sweden)

Read more about the goals of the UNESCO creative network here.

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