Jamaica has gained international recognition notably for the creative talents of its musicians and music producers defining international musical trends, especially in the international reggae and dancehall scene. The flourishing culture and creative industries (CCIs) include vibrant music festivals and a trending film sector. Jamaica has adopted a number of policies and measures to strengthen its institutional and legal framework with regards to the CCIs and protect artists in the face of emerging challenges such as increasing digitization, enhancing intellectual property regimes, the integration of Jamaica’s creative goods and services in international market, or tackling inequalities as well as the sector’s inherent informal dynamics. Efforts must be pursued to ensure the implementation of those measures and the effectiveness and inclusiveness of institutional mechanisms for the governance of culture. Jamaica recently revised its National Policy on Culture and Creative Economy (2017-2027), with the support from the UNESCO International Fund for Cultural Diversity (IFCD) reaffirming the island’s commitment to building sustainable systems of cultural governance. As part of this effort, Jamaica has set up the National Cultural and Creative Industries Commission in 2014 and elaborated the Jamaica Culture and Creative Industries Business plan, which seeks to increase Jamaica’s competitiveness in the global markets as well as to foster job creation. Jamaica’s Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sports is partnering with UNESCO under the project funded by Sweden, to elaborate its first quadrennial periodic report, with the participation of a large range of stakeholders from the public and private sectors of Jamaican’s creative scene, such as fashion, literature, film, dances.
A multi-stakeholder consultation was held in Kingston, Jamaica on 31 October 2019 on the process for elaborating Jamaica’s Quadrennial Periodic Report (QPR). H.E. Ms Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport addressed the participants. The multi-stakeholder consultation discussed issues such as media diversity, digital technology, mobility of artists and gender equality in the cultural and creative sectors. Organised by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and the UNESCO Office in Kingston, the consultation was the occasion to create a space for dialogue amongst representatives ranging from ministry, civil society organisations, private sector, professional associations, and artists.
A three-day national training workshop was held in Kingston, Jamaica, from 6 to 8 November 2019 and was organized by the Ministry of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport and the UNESCO Office in Kingston. Led by Avril Joffe, member of the UNESCO Expert Facility, the training welcomed government representatives from cultural fields as well as actors from Jamaica’s creative and cultural sector including fashion, broadcasting, film, literature, academia and the Rastafari community. Participants praised the in-depth look into Jamaica’s cultural management system and initiatives. “I learned about many new things that are happening in our creative sector and within the governmental system that I did not know about”, said one participant representing the creative community. The training’s focus was to improve Jamaican cultural professionals’ understanding of the 2005 Convention and its benefits for the island’s creative and cultural industries. The participants also learned how to fill out the quadrennial periodic report.