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The Protection and Promotion of Cultural Diversity at the International Level


Mira Burri


University of Bern Law School - World Trade Institute

April 1, 2009

NCCR Trade Regulation Working Paper No. 2009/10
CULTURAL DIVERSITY: ISSUES, CHALLENGES AND PERSPECTIVES, Lydia B. Kerwin, ed., Nova Science Publishing, 2009

Abstract:     
The Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, adopted under the auspices of the United Nations Educational, Cultural and Scientific Organization (UNESCO) in 2005, entered into force on 18 March 2007 after an incredibly swift ratification process. The Convention is the culmination of multiple-track efforts that spread over many years with the objective of providing a binding instrument for the protection and promotion of cultural diversity at the international level. These efforts, admirable as they may be, are not however isolated undertakings of goodwill, but a reaction to economic globalisation, whose advancement has been significantly furthered by the emergence of enforceable multilateral trade rules. These very rules, whose bearer is the World Trade Organization (WTO), have been perceived as the antipode to "culture" and have commanded the formulation of counteracting norms that may sufficiently "protect" and "promote" it.

Against this backdrop of institutional tension and fragmentation, the present chapter explicates the emergence of the concept of cultural diversity on the international policy- and law-making scene and its legal dimensions given by the new UNESCO Convention. It critically analyses the Convention's provisions, in particular the rights and obligations of the State Parties, and asks whether indeed the UNESCO Convention provides a sufficient and appropriate basis for the protection and promotion of a thriving and diverse cultural environment.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 19

Keywords: Trade, culture, cultural diversity, the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, the World Trade Organization

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Date posted: April 1, 2009 ; Last revised: October 21, 2010

Suggested Citation

Burri, Mira, The Protection and Promotion of Cultural Diversity at the International Level (April 1, 2009). NCCR Trade Regulation Working Paper No. 2009/10. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=1370440

Contact Information

Mira Burri (Contact Author)
University of Bern Law School - World Trade Institute ( email )
Hallerstrasse 6/8
Berne, CH-3012
Switzerland
0041 31 631 5492 (Phone)
HOME PAGE: http://www.nccr-trade.org/people/burri/
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