Exeter UNESCO City of Literature

Exeter UNESCO City of Literature

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  • Arts
  • Health and well being / research and care
  • Local / community

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As a UNESCO City of Literature, our vision is for everyone to love stories and storytelling. Our permanent designation as a UNESCO Creative City enables us to work with our local and global communities to celebrate diverse stories, create new opportunities around literature and storytelling, and establish Exeter and Devon as an outstanding destination for readers and writers everywhere. We believe in the power of literature to enable us to better know ourselves and others and to imagine new possibilities for this world.


Exeter UNESCO City of Literature's primary role is one of leadership and producing. We act as an umbrella organisation, uniting literary partners in the region under our Partnership Network to better improve the quality and quantity of literary and storytelling programming together. We undertake the design, production, and management of new programmes that fill cultural and social gaps from a literary perspective. We launched an Introduction to Bibliotherapy Skills course with Exeter College to embed bibliotherapy skills within existing institutions (libraries, prisons, mental health facilities, schools etc.), working with the Wellcome Centre for Cultures and Environments of Health to research bibliotherapy more thoroughly. We promote and showcase county-wide literary-based events and projects through our communication channels and networks. We manage the designation and deliver on our obligations to UNESCO through an active membership, conference attendance, and leadership roles. Together with our UNESCO Cities of Literature Network, we participate in and produce international cooperation projects.

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