"Culture, Common Denominator for Development. 18 Successful practices" (OAS)

"Culture, Common Denominator for Development. 18 Successful practices" (OAS)


CARIFIESTA IX, Surinam. A regional. roving and multidisciplinary megafestival that aims to celebrate diversity and excellence in the arts in the Caribbean. (Foto: Clyde de Hass - Caribis Productions).


The role of culture in development has been recognized by member states of the OAS in various forums. For this reason the OAS launched a project to create awareness among the different social sectors and governmental institutions about the fundamental role of culture in promoting economic growth, social inclusion, and sustainable development. The project seeks to encourage concrete initiatives to provide greater access to information on recent trends in public policies, better mechanisms for exchanging information, and new ways of mobilizing the transforming power of culture for generating development.


DOCUMENTING ENDANGERED LANGUAGES. Photo: Linguist Colette Grinevald with rama speakers. (Crédit: Rama Language and Culture Project (2005). "Projects Photographs". Rama Language and Culture Project Collection. The Archive of the Indigenous of Latin America.


Part of the project involved preparing Culture, common denominator for development, a publication on best practices, using concrete experiments to illustrate, in the various national contexts of the Americas, how culture can be an element for economic and social development. These practices constitute a basis for feedback, exchange and creative adaptation among policymakers, and powerful tool for communication on the transforming role of culture, for use those who must take decisions affecting cultural development.
PRODUCTIVE IDENTITIES, Argentina. The program is conceived as an opportunity for developing collective capacities to encourage a transformation toward collective engineering standards. (Photo: Marcelo Setton).
The OAS sent out an invitation to member states and other active institutions in the region, asking them to submit successful experiments in the field of culture for development. Member states, through their ministries or senior authorities for culture, and multilateral institutions as well, helped to publicize and relay this invitation and, in some cases, they proposed successful practices, either those in which they had participated directly or indirectly or those of which they had knowledge even though they had not been involved in carry carrying them out.
Practices selected
1. Productive Identities (Argentina)
2. The “mARTadero” Project an Incubator for the Arts (Bolivia)
3. Cultura Viva: Art, Education and Citizenship (Brazil)
4. Wapikoni Mobile (Canada)
5. CARIFIESTA (Caribbean Festival of Arts) (CARICOM, Caribbean Community)
6. Papel amate (Bark papper), a cultural legacy (Chile)
7. Medellín: the Transformation of a City (Colombia)
8. Artistic-cultural workshop with tradition-bearers (Costa Rica)
9. Training to improve the competitiveness of artistic handicrafts (Ecuador)
10. Documenting Endangered Languages (United States)
11. Studio C (Guatemala)
12. Regional Development in the Copán Valley (Honduras)
13. Flora Workshop (Mexico)
14. Building the Caribbean Atlas Online (Dominican Republic)
15. Arts and Culture for Youth Development Program (Saint Lucia)
16. Culture Factories (Uruguay)
17. National System of Youth and Children’s Orchestras
18. Cultural Information Systems
Office of Education and Culture/DHDEC
Executive Secretarial for Integral Development
Organization of American States
Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA)
Content development
Alfonso Castellanos Ribot