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6th December 2018, WahV speaks out regarding the OECD Conference in Venice and appeals to participating institutions to help Venice get a voice as a community.

The great and the good have come together today under the auspices of the OECD Conference “Unleashing the transformative power of culture and creativity for local development” in a city that was known as a mirror on the world of innovation, prosperity and resilience (as well as magnificence, of course) but has been reduced to a flailing canary in the mine where culture and creativity are being choked by uncontrolled tourism and crippling, widespread corruption to the tune of billions. As a result, the population of Venice has fallen by two-thirds in less than two generations and the existence of the city is seriously challenged. For too long, promises have been substituting policies, regulations and incentives, and trends continue in the wrong direction. We appeal for more space for civil society in these kinds of initiatives if institutions truly intend to unleash, transform and create value. We also ask for concerted action to push for greater attention from the different layers of national, regional and local government and administration to foster the wealth and resources of Venice as a community. As we have always said Venice for the Venetians, Venice for the world.