The UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities welcomes 55 new member cities from 27 countries

Today, 55 cities from 27 countries will join the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities (GNLC). These cities are outstanding examples of how lifelong learning can become a reality at local level. They have proven that effective lifelong learning policies and practices can support the development of inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable cities and contribute to the 2030 Agenda. Today’s new members bring the total number of cities within the UNESCO GNLC to 230 in 64 countries.

The UNESCO Institute for Lifelong Learning (UIL), as coordinator of the network, admitted the new members following their nomination by the National Commissions for UNESCO in the concerned countries. A strong commitment to lifelong learning by the mayor and city administration is a key prerequisite for becoming a learning city. As part of their application process, potential UNESCO GNLC members must demonstrate a clear vision for providing lifelong learning opportunities for everyone in the community. Once admitted, cities are expected to take part in the activities of the network and to produce a biennial report outlining their achievements as learning cities. The new member cities will be presented in an online event on 23 September 2020.

UIL Director David Atchoarena explains: ‘With unprecedented urgency, the COVID-19 pandemic has underlined the necessity to build more resilient education systems for the future. With more than half of humanity living in urban areas, cities must be at the centre of this undertaking.’

‘During the pandemic, UNESCO learning cities from around the world have shown that they are well placed to make lifelong learning a reality, also under harsh conditions,’ Mr Atchoarena continues. ‘I warmly welcome the new members of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities and very much look forward to working with them on further advancing our goal of ensuring lifelong learning for all.’

The 55 new members of the UNESCO GNLC are:

Africa Arab States Asia and the Pacific Europe Latin America and the Caribbean
Senegal Algeria Iran (Islamic Republic of) Azerbaijan Argentina
Guédiawaye Adrar Tehran Gabala José C. Paz
Fatick Algiers Isfahan Ganja San Justo
Tlemcen Bandar Khamir Baku La Matanza
Morocco Republic of Korea Belgium Colombia
Benguerir Songpa-Gu Charleroi Tunja
Laayoune Busan Metropolitan City Finland Rionegro
Chefchaouen Gongju Tampere Quibdó
Palestine Thailand Vantaa Mexico
Bethlehem Chachoengsao Germany Puebla
Saudi Arabia Phuket Bonn Nicaragua
Jubail Industrial City Chiang Mai Greece Santiago de los Caballeros de León
Qatar Uzbekistan Corinth Peru
Al-Shahaniya Farghona City Italy Arequipa
Viet Nam Lucca Chachapoyas
Vinh Trieste
Sa Dec Republic of Moldova
Cahul
Chișinău
Portugal
Batalha
Loures
Ourém
Russian Federation
Kazan
Svetlogorsk
Sysert
Spain
L’Alcora
Turkey
Afyonkarahisar
Balikesir
Izmir

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