Australian National Commission for UNESCO recognises the 150th Melbourne Cup

Media release

1 February 2010

The Australian National Commission for UNESCO has acknowledged the 150th anniversary of the Melbourne Cup as an event of cultural significance to Australians.

The National Commission has a strong role in promoting specific anniversaries within the community, endorsing events of national and international relevance. Its recognition of the 150th Anniversary of the Melbourne Cup reflects the cultural significance of the race that stops a nation and captures the imagination of all generations of Australians.

Australia is a founding member of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and has had a national UNESCO Advisory body, now known as the Australian National Commission for UNESCO, since 1947.

The National Commission performs a key role in Australia's engagement with UNESCO. The Commission, through its interaction with civil society, academia and the private sector, provides expert analysis and advice to the Australian Government on UNESCO issues.

The National Commission has also recognised the scientific significance to Australians of the upcoming 15th International Conference for Women Engineers and Scientists, to be held in Adelaide in July 2011.

The National Commission comprises a Chair, five community members representing UNESCO focus areas, a youth representative, eight ex officio representatives from government agencies and two Parliamentary observers. The National Commission is supported by a small secretariat within DFAT.

Media Enquiries: DFAT Media Liaison - 02 6261 1555