UNESCO Learning City Award

What is the UNESCO Learning City Award?

The UNESCO Learning City Award has been established to encourage and reward progress achieved in developing learning cities around the world. The Award is conferred on cities that have achieved outstanding progress in building learning cities by implementing the Key Features of Learning Cities, i.e. by:

  • promoting inclusive learning from basic to higher education;
  • revitalizing learning in families and communities;
  • facilitating effective learning for and in the workplace;
  • extending the use of modern learning technologies;
  • enhancing quality and excellence in learning; and
  • fostering a culture of learning throughout life.

How do cities apply?

To apply for the Award, cities must:

  1. Complete the Award Application Form and gather any necessary supporting material.
  2. The mayor sign the Award Application Form.
  3. Sign the Consent Form (included in the Award Application Form).
  4. Send the application to their country’s National Commission for UNESCO by 31 August 2016.

Each National Commission for UNESCO will nominate up to three cities for the Award. An international jury appointed by UNESCO will then select up to six cities per region to receive the UNESCO Learning City Award 2017. Eligibility: Applicants for the UNESCO Learning City Award must be members of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities.

2015 Awardees

The inaugural UNESCO Learning City Award was presented to twelve cities across all UNESCO regions in 2015. All of these cities have made outstanding progress in piloting and implementing the Key Features of Learning Cities since the 1st International Conference on Learning Cities in 2013. The 2015 Awardees are: Melton (Australia), Sorocaba (Brazil), Beijing (China), Bahir Dar (Ethiopia), Espoo (Finland), Cork (Ireland), Amman (Jordan), Mexico City (Mexico), Ybycuí (Paraguay), Balanga (Philippines), Namyangju (Republic of Korea) and Swansea (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland).

Information Note

To recognize outstanding achievements and practice in implementing the learning city concept, UNESCO has established the biennial UNESCO Learning City Award. Cities are awarded for their efforts to develop into a leaning city, but receipt of the Award does not mean that UNESCO has designated them ‘learning cities’. Members of the UNESCO GNLC are eligible to apply for the UNESCO Learning City Award, which is valid for one award cycle.