UNESCO was created in 1945 to respond to the firm belief of nations, forged by two world wars in less than a generation, that political and economic agreements are not enough to build a lasting peace. Peace must be established on the basis of humanity’s moral and intellectual solidarity. UNESCO strives to build networks among nations that enable this kind of solidarity, by mobilizing for education, building intercultural understanding, pursuing scientific cooperation, and protecting freedom of expression.
In 1949 UNESCO established the International Music Council (IMC). In 2009 the African Music Council was created to represent African musicians within the IMC. More recently the IMC initiated the African Music Development Programme, which aims to strengthen the music industry in the African continent along four major lines: exchanges and academic researches between African and European universities; a vocational training programme for musicians; capacity-building of target institutions; and a wide distribution of the results.
UNESCO is known as the 'intellectual' agency of the United Nations. At a time when the world is looking for new ways to build peace and sustainable development, people must rely on the power of intelligence to innovate, expand their horizons and sustain the hope of a new humanism. Its Africa Department is the focal point for all questions relating to Africa, and is responsible for advising the Director-General thereon.