Chiang Mai is the central city in the northern part of Thailand, it has a long history for almost 720 years. The important cultural heritage inherited in nowadays are crafts and folk arts which are remarkable and reflects wisdom of local people.
It shows that Chiang Mai used to be hub of commerce that many people came here for trading. Besides, it also is the center of government since established. From King Mang Rai period, there was “Mang Rai Sat”, the law that made fairness among traders. Chiang Mai had a good relationship with surrounded cities since the past such as Yunnan, Laos and Burma, by using tactics of commerce and government. Despite it is 720 years old, Chiang Mai do not only continuously maintain the identity but also expense its unique culture to other area. So, this may bring a lot of people make their decision to settle down here.
Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization has responsibility in several aspects of Chiang Mai province development such as economic, society, education, health promotion, career promoting, public utilities, natural resources and customary including to Chiang Mai wisdom to continue and transmitted to the next generation. To achieve maximum benefit to the local people, Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization has defined 3 guidelines which related to social capital, and cultural capital of Chiang Mai Province;
1. Promoting the local to run an activity with various organizations in the integration work for awareness in field of religion activity, the restoration of the customary culture and wisdom that is Chiang Mai unique and various of tribe.
2. Promoting the educational institutes and social institutions to run an important role in conservation, preserve, maintain, inherit, development, religious heritage arts, culture, customs as well as the ancient architecture and Chiang Mai historical places.
3. Promoting art knowledge development and culture to local and religious place by collaboration with the organizations both of public and private organizations, and inbound organization which work for socialization or oversea to develop Chiang Mai city to be Creative City of Arts and Culture.
Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization guidelines are related to The Eleventh National Economic and Social Development. Plan (2012-2016) which focus on economic development by promoting the creative city of the regional and local level for Thailand will become to the Creative Hub of ASEAN).
In the recent, Chiang Mai province has studied collected, and data base processing of Chiang Mai to prepare being a creative city network member of UNESCO organization. The operating need to study whole and parts include needing to operating both of policy and practicing.
In this regard, Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization has provided the Chiang Mai City Force Project under the name of " Chiang Mai City Force Project to be a creative city network member of UNESCO organization ( Handicraft and Folk Art)" to aspect for coordinating work with integrated with the public sector, private sector, community, education and career of Chiang Mai, and to jointly push Chiang Mai to be a creative city network member of UNESCO organization ( Handicraft and Folk Art) which can build Thailand reputation into international level by the cultural capital of the Chiang Mai province.
President of Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization
Bird or Swan is the symbol of garland in both real life and imagination that refers to Himavanta. In the other hand, it is the symbol of abundance and harmony compared as people who although from different origin but live together for creating crafts and folk art with cooperation and permanence.
Thailand faced many crises like social, economic, and environmental that lead to radical impact. The National Economic and Social Development Plans were found to solve these situations.
The National Economic and Social Development Board applied the concept “Sufficiency Economy” for the eighth - tenth plans to strengthen society among the changes, while the eleventh plan focused on participation of civil society including local, regional and national level, to make a peaceful, equitable and conscious society that able to deal with impact of the changes properly. Moreover, the plan also focused on a human resource development and quality of the society. Residents have got opportunities to access to affordable and reliable resources.
Making opportunity of economy with knowledge base, technology, innovation and creative economic development, is the importance of this issue. Following the model of enterprise network, the creative urban development and creative economic development were brought to support entrepreneur and staff’s potential, in order to make valuable product and service. Moreover, the model also focused on financial development for investment, registration, intellectual property protection, creative economic development researches and information technology which providing learning atmosphere such as learning center, public space, exhibition and creative service. These could support Thailand to be hub of production, commerce and service of ASEAN.
Following execution of creative economic policy, the government applied the policy to Chiang Mai, the multicultural city and full of cultural capital like arts, religions, traditions and literatures that inherited from the past. If there is a combination between creative thinking and these cultural heritage, it will make more advantages to the city’s economy and also to society.
Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization definitely has a power to develop the city in several aspects such as economy, social, education, public health, occupation, public utility, natural resource and tradition. The act of Provincial Administrative Organization in 2540 B.E. and the third one that edited in 2546 B.E., the first of section 45 (7 bis) which is about art conservation, local wisdom and culture conservation. The act also specified decentralization plan for local administration in 2542 B.E., especially the fifth, the fourteenth and the eighteenth. The fifth is about forest, land, natural resource and environment protection and preservation, while the fourteenth is about tourism promotion, and the eighteenth is about promotion of sport, local tradition and culture. These acts conform to the government’s policy, Ministry of Interior, Department of Local Administration and Chiang Mai city. Moreover, one of the plans is religious preservation and protecting the identity of art, culture, architecture, ancient remain and historical area. The procedure of the plans are following,
1. Supporting the cooperation between local people and other sectors in order to conserve art, culture and local wisdom of Chiang Mai city and ethnic groups.
2. Supporting educational institutions and social institutions to be part of the conservation, inheritance and development of the cultural heritage in Chiang Mai.
3. Developing knowledge about art, local culture and religion that cooperate with government sector, private sector and other organization in both national and international level, in order to make Chiang Mai be a creative city of art and culture.
This policy conforms to the vision of Chiang Mai city which is “City of life & Prosperity” and also concern with the Eleventh National Economic and Social Development Plan that focused on economic development and decided the creative city development policy, beneath the vision of creative economy in both local and regional level.
Since 2557 B.E., Chiang Mai Provincial Administrative Organization has cooperated with Faculty of Fine Arts, Chiang Mai University to proceed the project “Chiang Mai toward UNESCO Creative City of Crafts and Folk Art”, by doing research to find out the potential of Chiang Mai city. Moreover, workers have built up cooperation between stakeholders and prepared all aspects that cover with the principles of UNESCO.
There are currently 116 member cities around the world in seven creative industry fields.
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Crafts and Folk Art
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