Project Factsheet
Tools for » Creative Industries Support Programme
Project ID:00067193Description:MDGF-1838-G-KHM Creative Indus
MDG Achievement Fund
Start Date *: 2 Nov 2007
MDGF Culture & Development
End Date*: 30 Nov 2011
Country: Cambodia Project Status: Financially Closed
  Participating Organization:   Multiple


Under the objectives of the Thematic Window for Culture and Development, the joint programme was designed to promote the cultural diversity and heritage of Cambodia with the aim of harnessing the social and economic potential of its cultural assets and products. The substantial potential for diversifying sustainable economic growth and the creation of employment in the creative industries in Cambodia considers largely under-realized, and cultural-based goods and services play a much more limited role – as a catalyst and source of jobs creation, national and local revenues and foreign exchange – than in neighboring countries in the region.

Moreover, in choosing indigenous communities as its primary target, the CISP is in accordance with a number of broader UN initiatives concerning the rights of indigenous peoples and cultures, including: The UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (2007) and the forthcoming World Conference on Indigenous Peoples in 2014. During the most recent International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples (9 August 2011), UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon called on Member States to help indigenous communities “to protect, develop and be compensated fairly for the cultural heritage and traditional knowledge that is ultimately of benefit to us all”.

The programme was also in line with and contributed to i) the Royal Government of Cambodia Rectangular Strategy, ii) the ratified UNESCO conventions on “World Heritage (1972)”, “Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage (2003)” and “Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions (2005)”,  iii) the Small and Medium Enterprise Development Framework and iv) the Cambodian Trade Integration Strategy.

To promote both the social inclusion and cultural rights of indigenous peoples and to provide their sustainable income generation and livelihood improvements, the Millennium Development Goals Achievement Fund (MDG-F) with financing from the Government of Spain thus supported the Creative Industries Support Programme (CISP) in Cambodia.


Outcome 1:

Cambodia’s heritage, cultural diversity and living arts are preserved and developed to promote their social and economic potential

Outcome achievements:

  • The promotion of “Living Human Treasures” has been embedded in Cambodia’s legislation through a Royal Decree.  Mentorship programmes established amongst more than 10 producer groups to transmit traditional craft know how.
  • Officials increased understanding of UNESCO Conventions on Intangible Heritage (2003) and Cultural Diversity (2005). More than 100 civil servants were trained in the capital city and in the provinces.
  • Two Cultural Centers established in Ratanakiri and Mondulkiri provinces.
  • Technical and scientific support delivered to the establishment of the Preah Vihear Eco-Global Museum.
  • 4 Research publications on Indigenous People published.
  • Two CDs on Indigenous arts produced


Outcome 2:

Enhanced creative industries lead to improvement in livelihoods, particularly for Indigenous people and women

Outcome achievements:

  • Indigenous cultural industries created skills and livelihood improvements in the lives of recipients, for example, 809 members of Indigenous Groups received training in producing baskets; jars and pottery; performing arts; resin and weaving.
  • 63 cultural commodities producers groups were formed involving 809 people (of which 540 are women).
  • Groups received training on financial literacy (including costing, pricing, funds management,) business plan, quality check and marketing of cultural goods which has increased income and improved cultural identity. Groups received trainings in Natural Resources Management.
  • Market networks for cultural products/services were established. Study tours, participation to trade fairs were organized on a regular basis.


Outcome 3:

Improved commercialization of local cultural products and services in domestic and international markets

Outcome achievements:

  • Recommendations were issued with regard to trade legislation and producers and supporting NGOs were trained on the existing legal framework.
  • Guidelines were developed for public-private consultations at the grassroots level, along with pilot projects.
  • Increased sales and markets of indigenous products to markets in Siem Reap, Phnom Phen and four target provinces and beyond.  For example, it is reported that sales have increased up to 18% as a result of the Joint Programme’s intervention.
  • One Village One Product certification was secured for producers.


Lessons learned:

  • The project life span was too short.  At least a five-year programme life should be given for joint programmes.
  • Difficulties resulted from different rules and procedures amongst the agencies (eg, recruitment, office preparation, transferring funds agencies to NGO partners) and reporting requirements between the agencies, resulting in delays.   
  • Delays in transfer of funds from UN agency headquarters to country level.
  • In future, rather than a programme coordinator per agency, there should be a single Programme Coordinator.
  • There were also coordination gaps between the UN agencies and provincial implementing partners.
  • Sustainability of the programme results was also a noted as a concern.  There is a need for additional training, follow-up and monitoring, and more time is required for market development and market penetration.


More details can be found in the final project report:

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If you have questions about this programme you may wish to contact the RC office in Cambodia or the lead agency for the programme. The MPTF Office Portfolio Manager (or Country Director with Delegation of Authority) for this programme:

The persons with GATEWAY access rights to upload and maintain documents for the programme:

  • Ann Lund, Senior Coordination Specialist; Telephone: 85523216167; Email:; Skype: annlundwork
  • Mercedes Sanroman, Coordination Officer; Telephone: 855 (0) 12 204518; Email:; Skype: sanromanmercedes
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