On World Cities Day, 55 cities join the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN), following their designation by UNESCO Director-General Audrey Azoulay.

New cities were acknowledged for their strong commitment to harnessing culture and creativity as part of their development strategies, and displaying innovative practices in human-centred urban planning.

With the latest additions, the Network now counts 350 cities in more than one hundred countries, representing seven creative fields: Crafts and Folk Art, Design, Film, Gastronomy, Literature, Media Arts and Music.

The new members of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network are:

Asaba – Film
Ashgabat – Design
Banja Luka – Music
Battambang – Gastronomy
Bissau – Music
Bolzano – Music
Bremen – Literature
Buffalo City – Literature
Bukhara – Crafts and Folk Art
Bydgoszcz – Music
Caen – Media Arts
Caracas – Music
Casablanca – Media Arts
Castelo Branco – Crafts and Folk Art
Cetinje – Design
Chaozhou – Gastronomy
Chiang Rai – Design
Chongqing – Design
Concepción – Music
Da Lat – Music
Fribourg – Gastronomy
Gangneung – Gastronomy
Granada – Design
Gwalior – Music
Herakleion – Gastronomy
Hobart – Literature
Hoi An – Crafts and Folk Art
Iasi – Literature
Iloilo City – Gastronomy
Ipoh – Music
Kathmandu – Film
Kozhikode – Literature
Kutaisi – Literature
Mexicali – Music
Montecristi – Crafts and Folk Art
Montreux – Music
Nkongsamba – Gastronomy
Novi Sad – Media Arts
Okayama – Literature
Ouarzazate – Film
Oulu – Media Arts
Penedo – Film
Rio de Janeiro – Literature
Şanlıurfa – Music
Suphanburi – Music
Surakarta – Crafts and Folk Art
Taif – Literature
Toulouse – Music
Tukums – Literature
Ulaanbaatar – Crafts and Folk Art
Umngeni Howick – Crafts and Folk Art
Valencia – Design
Varaždin – Music
Veliky Novgorod – Music
Vicente Lopez – Film

The city of Lyon, Creative City of Media Arts since 2008, has been granted a status of a Creative City of Literature, following its request to change creative field.

Newly designated cities will cooperate with Network members to strengthen their resilience the face of evolving threats such as climate change, rising inequality, as well as rapid urbanization, with 68% of the world’s population projected to live in urban areas by 2050.

“The cities in our Creative Cities Network are leading the way when it comes to enhancing access to culture and galvanizing the power of creativity for urban resilience and development,” says Audrey Azoulay, UNESCO Director-General.

An upcoming policy paper – “The added value of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network at local, national and international level” – will testify to the leading role played by cities towards the achievement of the 2030 Agenda, while demonstrating ways in which UNESCO supports the UCCN members by fostering dialogue, peer-to-peer learning and collaboration.

The newly designated Creative Cities are invited to participate in the 2024 UCCN Annual Conference (1 – 5 July 2024) in Braga, Portugal, under the theme “Bringing Youth to the table for the next decade.