EUNIC Online Members Assembly
EUNIC members exchanged with Sabine Verheyen MEP, presented new projects in response to Covid-19, launched the new Strategic Framework 2020-2024 and pledged to strengthen European cultural relations at the Online Members Assembly on 4 June 2020.
Exchange with Sabine Verheyen MEP
Sabine Verheyen MEP, Chair of the European Parliament Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) joined the EUNIC Members Assembly for a discussion. Topics included the future EU Multiannual Financial Framework, the trilogue negotiations and cultural relations and diplomacy. She highlighted the need to consider the cultural and creative sectors in all recovery programmes.
Verheyen also acknowledged the importance of the EU strategy for international cultural relations and its reciprocal approach built around “a new spirit of dialogue, mutual listening and learning, joint capacity-building and global solidarity”. She highlighted that “arts and culture have become our healers and our rescuers during the past months, without us having to leave home”, that “they linked countries, regions and continents – and by doing so, they linked cultures and people”.
Cultural actors, artists and their creations should be seen as essential partners of political and civic leaders to maximize community participation and relations. Let me again call on your partnership.
She also urged EUNIC members to continue to advocate for culture on EU and Member State level: “In CULT, we strongly believe that culture is a tool to develop active citizenship and community involvement that leads to social inclusion, solidarity, responsibility and justice. Long-term policy visions should highlight that culture provides strong mechanisms for the development of civic values. Cultural actors, artists and their creations should be seen as essential partners of political and civic leaders to maximize community participation and relations. Let me again call on your partnership.”
EUNIC members' project pitches
The online meeting provided an occasion for EUNIC members to present to each other new formats and activities that they have developed in reaction to the current crisis situation. In short pitches, twenty EUNIC members and four clusters presented online live perfomance programmes, emergency grant schemes, online networking events and many more:
- Arts Council Malta: Special Call 2020
- DutchCulture: Infected Cities LIVECast series
- Culture Ireland: Ireland Performs
- Società Dante Alighieri: DigiDANTE
- The Finnish Cultural and Academic Institutes: Together Alone
- Ukraine: House of Europe's Covid-19 response
- British Council: Fashion Friday
- Danish Cultural Institute: Interacting with 10,000 Wuhan kids
- French Ministry of Europe and Foreign Affairs: Communication in times of crisis
- Instituto Cervantes: Mes Del Libro
- Austrian Ministry for European and International Affairs: No-Place Like The Future
- Swedish Institute: Quarantine Dads
- Senegal: Lëlu Di Wajal’Art
- Slovakian Ministry of Foreign Affairs: One day Jazz festival 2020
- Romanian Cultural Institute: 24th European Film Festival in Romania
- Tunisia: Tfanen – Tunisie Créative
- Polish Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Commemmoration and education project
- Institut français: Open studios for artist residencies
- Czech Centres: Online network activities
- ifa - Institut für Auslandsbeziehungen: Are you for real?
- Camões, I.P.: Portuguese Language World Day
- Goethe-Institut: Kulturama.digital
- Romania: EUNIC Mixers
- Italian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation: WeAreItaly
New EUNIC Strategic Framework for 2020-2024
EUNIC members approved the network’s new Strategic Framework for 2020-2024. In its revised strategy, EUNIC recounts the values of cultural relations – bottom-up approach, co-creation, joint capacity building, mutual listening and learning – as well as a wider understanding of culture. The three objectives have been finetuned to reflect the current partnership with the EU and to acknowledge a number of key policy documents, such as the EU’s strategic approach to international cultural relations.
Make cultural relations count: joint statement
EUNIC members pledged to continue to strengthen European cultural relations. They published a joint statement to call to mind the importance of cultural relations and their value for friendly and peaceful foreign policy, and to emerge from this crisis as unscathed as possible. EUNIC members call on all actors to put cultural relations at the core of our efforts to combat the rippling effects of the coronavirus outbreak, to protect culture from budget cuts in the post-crisis financial frameworks and EU budgets for culture to be substantially increased.