Meaningful Engagement International

Development, Arts and Cultural Policy Consulting

Cultural Diversity U 40 Network












See for complete information on the U40 Network.We're expecting a website launch in Spring 2013.

Mapping Cultural Diversity: Good Practices from Around the Globe

This anthology, published by the Asia-Europe Foundation and the German Commission to UNESCO features programs and policies that foster cultural diversity submitted by U40 Fellows. The Big Read, a U.S. program sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and the Institute for Museum and Library Sciences, is included in the publication as one of the program profiles. 

2011 Inter-Americas Encounter on Local Cultural Diversity

Between May 19-May 22, U40s from the Americas attended a meeting on local cultural diversity practices in Toluca, Mexico. This project was partially sponsored by the first round of the International Fund on Cultural Diversity.  Documents are forthcoming.

2010 U40 Annual Meeting, Istanbul, Turkey

On October 21-October 24, I represented North American U40 Fellows at the annual meeting in Istanbul, Turkey. The total number of fellows now exceeds 70 from all regions of the world.  Click here for our Network in Action document which emerged from this gathering.


On May 19-21, 2010, the Coalition for Cultural Diversity hosted a conference in Montreal for the Americas as part of our regional activities.  

The U40 Americas meeting was a follow-on to the U40 World Forum Capacity-Building Program “Cultural Diversity in 2030” held in Paris in June of 2009 and organized by the German National Commission for UNESCO in association with the IFCCD.

Meeting Goals:

  • Launch a new regional network of decision-makers of tomorrow to enable the exchange of expertise and concerted action to protect and promote the diversity of cultural expressions.
  • Develop concrete proposals for action to be taken by the new network in order to meet the challenges considered during the meeting.
  • Focus the attention of the cultural sector and civil society in countries of the Americas on what is at stake in the campaign to protect and promote the diversity of cultural expressions.
  • Promote the recognition of cultural diversity as a crucial component of sustainable development.

Themes for Consideration:

  1. Recognition of cultural diversity in sustainable development.
  2. Promotion of cultural diversity in other international forums.
  3. Cultural policies in the digital age.

Our deliberations led to the following:


English Version
Spanish Version
French Version

Value of U.S. Representation (We are always looking for new fellows)

Why would U.S. representatives participate in a network designed to support the ratification of a Convention our nation will presumably never sign?  

1. You might believe that the U.S. should sign it.
2. Like myself, you may believe that the United States can cooperate to support cultural diversity values through other mechanisms outside of the Convention.
3.  It is important for the U.S. to be present at the table.
4. The United States continues to develop in the practice of cultural policy and it is important for us to exchange practices and ideas as we address common challenges.
5. This is an opportunity to learn more about international cultural policy and to meet other like- minded individuals.

I have found this to be an exceptionally savvy and knowledgeable network and thus invaluable.   For my own opinions and some background, please look under the Cultural Diversity section of my Publications tab.  I am happy to recommend some other U.S.-based and international scholars on this topic on request.