Map of the world colour-coded by level of school closures.

UNESCO supports countries mitigate the immediate impact of school closures on hundreds of millions of students to facilitate the continuity of education for all through remote learning.

mountain gorilla in DRC

Primatologists around the world are closely monitoring the disease in the infected San Diego gorillas. UNESCO has alerted managers of its biosphere reserves and world heritage sites.

The Ocean Decade will harness, stimulate and empower interdisciplinary ocean research at all levels, to support the timely delivery of the data, information and knowledge needed to achieve a well-functioning ocean in support of all SDGs of the 2030 Agenda.

A boy wearing a facemask uses his phone as a camera in a crowd.

UNESCO has condemned the killing of 59 media workers in 2020, among them four women. With 22 killings each, the Latin America and the Caribbean Region and the Asia and the Pacific Region registered the highest number of fatalities in the profession, followed by the Arab States Region with nine, and Africa with six. Overall, 2020 saw one of the lowest yearly tolls recorded by UNESCO over the past decade, during which 888 journalists and media workers paid the ultimate price for informing the public. In 2019, UNESCO condemned the killing of 57 journalists, 99 in 2018.

A turtle underwater swims to the surface while the sun shines through.

The marine realm is the largest component of the Earth’s system that stabilizes the climate and supports life on Earth and human well-being. That’s why the UN proclaimed the Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) to support efforts to reverse the cycle of decline in ocean health. UNESCO takes the lead in gathering ocean stakeholders worldwide to ensure ocean science can fully support countries in creating improved conditions for the sustainable development of the Ocean. Adaptation strategies and science-informed policy responses to global change are urgently needed.

Los Caballos del Vino is an equestrian ritual that takes place each year in May in Caravaca de la Cruz. Wine-growing and horse-breeding form an inherent part of the economy, history and culture of the area.

photo of woman with embroidery on top

UNESCO has assessed the measures taken by governments to respond to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis on culture professionals and on the sector as a whole, an impact which appears to be more severe than previously assumed, according to data collected by the Organization and contained in a new policy guide. In the film industry, it is estimated that ten million jobs will be lost in 2020, while one third of art galleries are estimated to have reduced their staff by half during the crisis. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has led to learning disruption on a scale never seen before. The closure of learning institutions has affected the lives of more than 1.5 billion students in over 190 countries.

graphic of Earth globe over ocean shore

Lack of funding is hampering the development of marine research and its valuable applications, according to a report published by UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission.

father teaching son pottery making

During this year’s session (14 to 19 December, online), the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage inscribed three elements on the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage in Need of Urgent Safeguarding, and 29 elements on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. This year saw the highest number of multi-country nominations, with 14 inscriptions on UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage Lists, which now feature elements from a total of 131 States.

While on their way to school, a terrible bicycle accident left Avni visually-impaired and eventually unable to return to school with her older sister Bina.

Bob Marlee on poster during concert

Despite the global COVID-19 pandemic, the States Parties to the Convention for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage will hold their annual meeting on 14-19 December online.

Illustration of the programme with a drawn profile and geometric lines.

The UNESCO-Russia Mendeleev International Prize in the Basic Sciences aims promotes and honours excellence in science and celebrates its role in the advance of sustainable development.  

Close-up of an artefact displayed at an exhibition

Half a century after its adoption, the UNESCO 1970 Convention against the illicit trafficking of cultural property is still a major instrument to stem this scourge. Over the last fifty years, the fight against this underground trade has intensified, and awareness of the moral damage caused by the plunder has grown. But the craze for these objects, the prices of which have skyrocketed; the leniency of sanctions, and the vulnerability of sites in conflict zones are all challenges that need to be addressed to curb the trafficking of what some call “blood antiquities”.

Portrait of a woman.

UNESCO launched a flagship initiative in February 2018 to Revive the Spirit of Mosul, as the Organization’s response for the recovery of one of Iraq’s iconic cities.