UN-Habitat Turns Hanoi into a Creative City

UN-Habitat Turns Hanoi into a Creative City

The United Nations Human Settlements Program (UN-Habitat) has been supporting the Vietnamese government to address its urban development challenges, including the difficulties Hanoi faces. The Hanoi Creative Design Festival is one of Hanoi's annual programs sponsored by UN-Habitat to develop a public people-oriented cultural environment, creating sustainable development and preserving heritages.

UN-Habitat cooperated with the Hanoi government to organize the Creative Design Festival, attracting a lot of visitors.

 UN-Habitat recently organized the Creative Design Festival with the cooperation with   UNESCO, the Hanoi government, and the Vietnam Association of Architects. This is an impressive cultural activity in Hanoi integrating many events like exhibitions, talk shows, seminars, and cultural activities with creative, experiential, and educational elements.

Christian Manhart, Chief Representative of the UNESCO Office in Hanoi, hopes to develop a public and creative cultural space in Hanoi.
A performance at the Creative Design Festival. 

 Along with this festival was  a series of nearly 50 activities held in the Hoan Kiem district, such as the Ly Thai To Monument Flower Garden, Dong Kinh Nghia Thuc Square, Arts and Culture Center (22 Hang Buom), Ho Guom Cultural Information Center (2 Le Thai To) and the Exhibition House (45 Trang Tien).

Cultural events in the festival included an Exhibition of works from the Hanoi Public Art Contest 2022, the Dream House Contest, and the introduction of creative design centers of cities of UNESCO's Creative Cities Network. The displays were traditional and contemporary products of craft villages like lacquer painting, silk painting and making Do paper. A virtual reality video installation creates a new perspective in planning and protecting Hanoi's heritage.

At the Hanoi Creative Design Festival, with the message of connecting tradition with modernity, visitors could interact and form a new perspective of the capital.

Through the Hanoi Creative Design Festival 2022, the UN-Habitat wishes to support and promote Hanoi's cultural resources. The UN-Habitat, UNESCO, and Hanoi want to spread the message of joining hands to build Hanoi from a city for peace to include a UNESCO Creative City.

“The Hanoi Creative Design Festival is a place for artistic talents to exchange ideas, meet and jointly contribute creativity and knowledge for the general development of the city”, Christian Manhart, Chief Representative of the UNESCO Office in Hanoi, said.

The UN-Habitat has worked with the Vietnamese government since the 1990s and established an office in Vietnam in 2007. Currently, UN-Habitat supports Hanoi with three initiatives at the international level, including Creative Festivals, the UNESCO Creative Cities Forum in Southeast Asia, and Networking of Young Designers and Competitions.


Nguyen The Son, an artist who is the curator of the festival, said that he has participated in the festival for many years, but the highlight of this year gave him many new experiences as well as endless creative ideas. He hopes that the young, dynamic, and enthusiastic Vietnamese will together make Hanoi a creative city constantly innovating step by step and keeping up with other creative cities in the world.

The Hanoi Creative Design Festival is an annual activity to implement initiatives and commitments with UNESCO when Hanoi joined the Creative Cities Network. The festival has the theme of Design & Technology towards creating favorable conditions for the locals and tourists to visit, experience, and enjoy the festival’s atmosphere.
Visitors are excited about artwork by Vietnamese artists.

Story: Bich Van/VNP - Photos: Viet Cuong – Translated by Hong Hanh