The General Assembly of the United Nations in December 2013 approved the role of culture as an engine and facilitator for sustainable development, and called for the mobilization of additional efforts in order to exploit the global potential of cultural diversity, and include it in the core of global sustainable development strategies that seek to eradicate poverty, promote gender equality, and support quality education and human rights. UNESCO also called for the inclusion of culture and sustainable development in the post 2015 development agenda. A study conducted by the British "I Teach" group in April 2015, revealed that the UAE has become a leading brand among the global educational markets in the field of cultural diversity in the educational sector, in terms of the number of nationalities who enroll in the same schools, in spite of the cultural and cognitive dimensions, especially in the primary stages with more 180 nationalities of students who enroll in schools across the country.
The study showed that the government departments are making great efforts to meet the needs of the diversity of the sector, as the UAE provides 16 different curricula.
The statistics guide issued by the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research, for the period (2013-2014), showed that 39.67% of the students in higher education institutions in the country are from 160 countries hosted by the UAE. The 3rd "World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue", which was recently concluded in Baku, capital of Azerbaijan, focused on the projects and programs dedicated to May 21st, which was designated by the General Assembly of the United Nations the "World Day for Cultural Diversity for Dialogue and Development", and on the role of education, art, business, beliefs and religions, migration, and sports in building confidence and cooperation among cultures and civilizations. The Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and his wife attended the opening of the Forum, which was held under the slogan "Sharing Culture for a Shared Security", and tackled several issues, including; cultural exchange, ensuring common security, ways to counter extremism, and the role of religious leaders in supporting pluralism.
The first day saw two major sessions titled "Dialogue in a post-2015 world", and "Dialogue as transformation", and they included discussions for a large number of politicians and decision-makers and experts, including Irina Bokova, Director-General of UNESCO, Nassir Abdulaziz Al-Nasser, the UN High Representative for the Alliance of Civilizations, Iyad bin Amin Madani, Secretary General of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, and Abdulaziz Othman Altwaijri, Director General of ISESCO.
On the sidelines of the Forum, the book "Agree to Differ", published by UNESCO in cooperation with the Tudor Rose, was launched.
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