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UNESCO: United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization




  • © UNESCO/Eidsvik/WHC
  • Nahanni National Park, Canadian Rockies

Canada became a member of UNESCO on November 4, 1946. The Canadian city of Montreal is home to the UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS), established in July 1999.

Canada has been active in furthering the Education for All (EFA) initiative, as well as supporting UNESCO’s leadership role in the United Nations Decade of Education for Sustainable Development. Concerning Education for Human Rights, Canada has contributed notably to the Convention on the Rights of the Child

Canada has 13 sites inscribed on the World Heritage List, five cultural and six natural, including two transnational sites with the United States of America.

Canada is active in the MAB programme with 13 biosphere reserves inscribed in the World Network of Biosphere Reserves. In 2005, the Canadian Biosphere Reserve Association (non-governmental organization involved in the programme) drew up a Business Plan aiming to place all the Canadian biosphere reserves on a more secure financial basis.

Since 1998, Canada has been a leading advocate of cultural diversity, through such projects as the “bush schools” of the Cree people.

Canada was very active in the development of the International Convention against Doping in Sport. The World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), based in Montreal, has worked closely with UNESCO for several years.

Canada has also been an important ally of UNESCO in the field of bioethics and the ethics of science and technology.

IFEX, a global network of freedom of expression organizations advocating press freedom and protection, is coordinated by the Toronto-based Canadian Journalists for Free Expression and supported by UNESCO.

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