This is the first time that the “World Book Capital” title has been conferred on a French city, and it will not be awarded to another French city for at least ten years, per UNESCO policy. It is awarded every year by UNESCO to a city committed to promoting books and reading in all forms and at all ages of life, to fight illiteracy and inequality in a changing world. The designated cities must meet a dual objective: to sharpen people’s critical thinking skills while emphasising dialogue between cultures, and to organise a range of popular events.
In keeping with the values of UNESCO, Strasbourg is mobilising to deploy its project, called Reading our World. With 25 programmes and nearly 200 initiatives, it is structured around 5 cross-cutting areas of focus: