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Main German activities

Germany contributes intensively and effectively to UNESCO’s science programmes. Multiple different stakeholders are involved: federal, state and local governments, universities and research institutes but also civil society organisations und many others. The following list provides a short overview:

  • The 15 German biosphere reserves are leading model regions for sustainable development. They are part of a global network of more than 550 UNESCO-designated sites.
  • Since 2009 there is a UNESCO-Water institute in Koblenz. Its objective it to study the future of water resources in the context of global change. To this end, the institute also conducts training programmes and summer schools and it furthers the international cooperation.
  • The Tsunami Early Warning System in the Indian Ocean, which was coordinated by UNESCO’s IOC, was set up with the support of the German government.
  • The Expert Committee in the Sciences of the German Commission for UNESCO tries to facilitate the scientific cooperation with Africa, e.g. via UNESCO National Commissions in Africa.
  • The German government sponsors UNESCO-driven research programmes on land use in Uzbekistan and China.
  • German scientists actively contribute to the majority of projects in the IGCP of UNESCO.
  • DUK is promoting human rights, e.g. by co-organizing the German Movie Award for Human Rights and by publishing guides on individual human rights complaints.
  • The city of Nuremberg is coordinating the European Coalition of Cities against Racism of UNESCO.
  • DUK organizes training courses on water management for government officials from the Middle East and North Africa.
  • World Philosophy Day is celebrated in Germany with many events.


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