UNESCO, the British Council, and the Italian Agency for Development Cooperation
(AICS) have joined forces in managing Culture and Creativity for the Western Balkans
(CC4WBs), a programme funded by the European Union, aimed at fostering intercultural dialogue and enhancing the socio-economic impact of the cultural and creative sector in the Western Balkans (Albania, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia).
Through a broad participatory approach targeting public authorities, the private sector, civil society organizations in culture, as well as individual professionals in the sector, the CC4WBs project aims to:
(1) improve the performance of the cultural and creative sector in the Western Balkans
(2) strengthen the cultural cooperation within and with the region, and
(3) enhance inclusive cultural heritage for local development.
The programme planning stage kicked off in April 2022, with a view to organising different programme strands that will be taking place until April 2026.
The ultimate beneficiaries of the CC4WBs programme will be citizens of the Western Balkans, who will have various opportunities to apply for professional development and capacity-building activities, as well as grant funding within specific thematic windows.
The Western Balkans share a rich and diverse cultural heritage and represent a vibrant stage for all creative industry professionals. Regional cooperation and co-creation require incentives and support, but they are well underway.
The region’s unquestionable potential for further development of cultural and creative industries (CCIs) is represented in its numerous cultural festivals and events, some of which have been running for decades, but also by novel organisations and initiatives that have been burgeoning over the past years.
With its surplus of talent and ambitious sectoral drivers of growth, the cultural and creative industries represent a major developmental opportunity for the Western Balkans.