8 Cities of Literature, 3 U.S. Cities join UNESCO network

Today, Oct. 31, on UN’s World Cities Day, 64 newly designated UNESCO Creative Cities have been announced. Eight Cities of Literature have been added to our network. We congratulate these cities on their new designation and on all the work they have done to be recognized by UNESCO. All 28 Cities of Literature will be welcomed to Iowa City in April 2018 for our network’s annual conference.

Among the new Cities of Literature is Seattle, which becomes the second U.S. city to earn the designation. Also joining the network from the U.S. are Kansas City (Music) and San Antonio (Gastronomy). That brings the number of U.S. Creative Cities Network members to nine.

“We welcome the new cities to our network, and look forward to learning from and collaborating with these partners,” said John Kenyon, executive director of the Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature.

In addition to Seattle, new Cities of Literature are Bucheon, South Korea; Durban, South Africa; Lillehammer, Norway; Manchester, UK; Milan, Italy; Quebec, Canada; and Utrecht, Netherlands.
Iowa City was designated as the third City of Literature in the world, and the second Creative Cities Network member in the U.S. in 2008. Since 2004, the UNESCO Creative Cities Network highlights its members’ creativity within seven fields: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music. It now counts a total of 180 cities in 72 countries.

Outgoing UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova announced the new designations today at the UN General Conference in Paris.

“These new designations showcase an enhanced diversity in city profiles and geographical balance, with 19 cities from countries not previously represented in the Network” she said. “The cooperation framework proposed to foster candidate cities from the Africa region – a UNESCO Global Priority – has been a true success with 9 African cities now joining the Network.”

Since 2004, the UNESCO Creative Cities Network highlights its members’ creativity within seven fields: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music. It now counts a total of 180 cities in 72 countries.

To learn more about all 64 new Cities, and the 180 total Creative Cities in the UNESCO network, visit UNESCO.org.

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  1. […] to learning from and collaborating with these partners,” John Kenyon, executive director of the Iowa City UNESCO City of Literature, said in a press […]