UNESCO established the Creative Cities Network (UCCN) in 2004 to promote collaboration with and between cities that view creativity as a strategic factor for sustainable urban development. The 180 cities which are currently part of the network all place creativity and the cultural industries at the centre of their local development plans. They also actively work together internationally. Within the network there are close ties between those cities which share the same creative focus. This can include design, film, gastronomy, music or … literature!
Leeuwarden-Friesland is applying to become a UNESCO Creative City of Literature. Currently around 30 cities worldwide bear this title. And it is not a title for simply one year – it is permanent membership of the network. Current Cities of Literature include Edinburgh, Utrecht, Barcelona, Melbourne, Milan and Seattle. Cities that are also in the network and with whom we are already in contact are: Ljubljana, Dublin, Manchester, Edinburgh and Tartu. Here is a map showing all the cities.