Int’l academic conference on cultural cities opened on Jeju Island

An academic conference on Jeju Island has discussed the vision and direction of the nation’s 18 officially designated cultural cities and shared the results of regional development through the use of unique cultural resources.

The Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Jeju Special Self-Governing Province, Seogwipo City Hall, National Association of Cultural Cities, and Regional Culture and Development Agency from Oct. 26-29 are hosting the 2022 Korea, City of Culture Expo and Global Conference at International Convention Center Jeju in Seogwipo.

Held under the theme “Every City Has Its Own Distinct Culture,” Korea’s 18 cities legally designated cultural cities and about 600 related figures from both home and abroad attended the event.

The conference began on Oct. 26 with a keynote speech by Pier Luigi Sacco, former special adviser to the European Commissioner for Education and Culture and now a professor at the University of Chieti-Pescara in Italy. The event’s three sections are announcement of themes and case studies, discussions, and an exchange event between cultural cities of Korea and the U.K.

In his speech, Sacco called Korea a rising global power in culture thanks to Hallyu, adding that the U.S. and Europe no longer lead the ecosystem for global creative content, an area that is gradually getting more diverse.

Seoul is undoubtedly the world’s top cultural city, he said, urging the raising of attractiveness and reputations of major cities long active in culture such as Gwangju and Busan, presentation of more Korean cities on the global stage, and strengthening of cultural stimulation in suburbs and smaller cities.

The first section was titled “Regional Development through Culture” and the second “Cultural Participation and Innovation of Regional Societies,” with lectures given by speakers from both home and abroad including Karen Maguire, head of the Local Employment, Skills and Social Innovation Division of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

She said the OECD actively supports cultural projects by countries and is monitoring Korea’s success story.

The development of cultural cities can lead to job creation and stimulation of regional economies, she added.

The event’s three days of activities from Oct. 27 includes the opening ceremony, 18 exhibition halls displaying the accomplishments of cultural cities, promotional center for cultural city policy and exhibition of Jeju. Also scheduled are a presentation on the five predesignated cultural cities announced last month and the tourism program of the cultural city of Seogwipo.

First Vice Minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism Chun Byong-keuk said, “This exhibition was arranged to share how the country’s 18 cultural cities achieve regional growth through culture and how cities are developing through the participation of regional residents,” adding, “We hope to open exchange channels among cultural cities both at home and abroad and that the new administration finds strategic solutions for cultural city policy.”

Source: Ministry of National Defense Republic of Korea

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