Legarda: cultural statistics and local governance key to advancing creative sector, fostering national identity

December 4, 2023

Senate President Pro Tempore Loren Legarda delivered a keynote address at the 5th International Conference on Cultural Statistics and Creative Economy (ICCSCE), emphasizing the crucial role of cultural statistics and local cultural governance in advancing the creative sector and fostering national identity.

Themed “Engaging Local Culture and Arts Councils Towards Harmonizing Local Cultural Statistics and Creative Industries,” the ICCSCE serves as a platform for scholars, researchers, government officials, and private individuals to discuss relevant topics and emerging trends in cultural statistics and the creative economy.

Senator Legarda, a staunch advocate for cultural development and the creative industries underscored the need for evidence-based policymaking in the cultural sector. She highlighted the importance of cultural statistics in informing policy decisions and resource allocation, ultimately contributing to the sustainable growth of the creative economy.

“Our cultural considerations can no longer remain on the sidelines of policy-making,” Senator Legarda stressed. “They must be integrated into education, economic planning, urban and rural development, and technological innovations.”

The Senator also spoke about her legislative efforts in promoting cultural preservation and creative industries development. She cited Republic Act No. 11904 or the Philippine Creative Industries Development Act, which she authored, as a testament to the government’s commitment to fostering long-term growth and development within the creative sectors.

“Our artists, artisans, designers, and cultural workers have long been working tirelessly to preserve our traditions, explore new frontiers, and express the talents of the Filipino people,” she said.

Senator Legarda further emphasized the significance of Republic Act No. 11961 or the Cultural Mapping Law, which she principally sponsored and authored. This law mandates local government units to conduct comprehensive cultural mapping of their areas, ensuring the identification and documentation of diverse cultural heritage resources for appreciation, conservation, and development.

“Every locality has its unique cultural heritage to showcase,” she stated. “We have to identify and document these resources for appreciation, conservation, and development.”

Looking towards the future, Senator Legarda expressed her commitment to further safeguarding and promoting Filipino culture. She introduced Senate Bill No. 624 or the Linangan ng Likhang Bayan Bill, which aims to establish an Institute for Living Traditions.

“This initiative aims to fortify our cultural heritage across various cultural communities,” she explained. “It seeks to champion equality in creative participation and productive endeavors, placing an emphasis on preserving intangible heritage.”

Senator Legarda concluded, “Our Filipino pride begins with an awareness of the rich and diverse heritage of our country. I encourage you to continue this important dialogue, share your insights, collaborate, and explore initiatives to protect, preserve, and rightfully pass on our cultural heritage to the next generations.”

The 5th ICCSCE continues tomorrow, December 5, with sessions focusing on the role of local culture and arts councils in the creative economy. (30)