太湖世界文化论坛

《The Third Annual Conference》

Shanghai Consensus

From June 18 to 19, 2014, about 500 Chinese and foreign guests from more than 20 countries and regions gathered in Shanghai, China, to attend the Third Annual Conference of Taihu World Cultural Forum and reached the following consensus on the major theme of "Strengthening Cultural Exchanges and Mutual Appreciation for World Peace and Development".


(1) The world is undergoing significant changes since the beginning of the 21st century. Global challenges such as climate change are becoming increasingly serious, and no country can stay away from it. At the same time, economic globalization is becoming more and more advanced, information application and networking are advancing rapidly, and the interests of people from all countries are more interconnected than ever before; under such circumstances, humanity living on the same planet is becoming a community of shared future for mankind. It is an urgent issue for the international community to move ideology and culture forward together with the times, abandon outdated thinking, establish the concept of a community of shared future for mankind, adhere to mutual respect, harmony without conformity, win-win cooperation, thus promoting lasting peace and common development in the world.


(2) Now, some countries and regions are in turmoil, and the geopolitical and economic order has been shaken dramatically. After the international financial crisis, the world economic landscape and international division of labor have entered a new period requiring adjustment. In the face of a world full of uncertainty and unrest, the aspiration of people from all countries to seek peace and development has grown stronger. It is more important and urgent than ever to strengthen cultural exchanges and cultural soft power interaction, to promote mutual understanding and trust among peoples, to deepen international political and economic cooperation, and to promote world peace and development.


(3) Cultural exchanges, mutual learning, and cultural soft power enhancement and interaction are important driving forces to promote world peace and development. To strengthen cultural exchanges, we must respect cultural diversity and develop common culture, and unite the two in the practice of promoting world peace and development. It should be noted that, although respect for cultural diversity has become an international consensus, there is still a long way to go before it can truly become a conscious practice of the international community. The gap between developing countries and developed countries in terms of international discourse right and ability as well as experience of cultural communication remains large calling for improvement and strengthening; while outdated thinking still exists, leading to misunderstanding, prejudice and discrimination against the culture of developing countries and even concept that the building and interaction of cultural soft power of various countries is a zero-sum game; this is the main obstacle to strengthening cultural exchanges at present and must be eliminated through efforts.


(4) An important reason why Chinese civilization has lasted for 5,000 years without interruption is that it is open, inclusive, and innovative, accepting all cultures while maintaining its own characteristics. In a new era, China adheres to and carries forward its excellent cultural traditions and respects and learns from excellent cultural achievements of people all over the world, which provide spiritual support for China's economic take-off and social progress and make important contributions to world peace and development. This is a vivid embodiment of the fact that culture is enriched by exchanges and developed by mutual learning and is a powerful proof that the interaction of cultural soft power promotes mutual attraction and win-win cooperation among all countries in the world. Today, humanity is highly interconnected in its life and development, under this circumstance, all countries should strive to enhance their own cultural soft power, strengthen interaction on this regard, jointly create an era of mutual respect and exchange and two-way learning among civilizations, and promote the world to achieve lasting peace, common prosperity, and continuous progress.



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