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Brussels, 29 September 2009

Over 1,000 EU stakeholders and policy makers at the European Culture Forum in Brussels

Culture cooperation and intercultural dialogue will be discussed in Brussels on 29 and 30 September at the European Culture Forum, attended by more than 1,000 culture sector experts and policy makers from across Europe and beyond. The Forum, one of the headline events of the 2009 European Year of Creativity and Innovation, will take stock of progress towards the goals of the European Agenda for Culture, which was launched in May 2007.

High-level speakers at the two-day event include Mr Ján Figel', the European Commissioner for Education, Training, Culture and Youth, Ms Doris Pack, Chairwoman of the Committee on Culture and Education of the European Parliament, Mr Hans-Gert Pöttering, former President of the EP, Ms Lena Adelsohn Liljeroth, the Swedish Minister of Culture Mr Wim Wenders, the President of the European Film Academy and Mr Jordi Savall, the viola de gamba maestro.

The discussions will focus on:

  • promoting cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue,

  • unlocking the potential of culture as a catalyst for creativity and innovation, and

  • building on the vital role of culture in external relations.

The adoption in 2007 of the first-ever European Agenda for Culture has brought new working methods in culture policy making. Member State experts share policy experience and generate recommendations for European, national or regional action. Three culture civil society "platforms", working respectively on access to culture, cultural and other creative industries and intercultural dialogue, have published practice-based recommendations to feed into the policy making process.

Since the launch of the Agenda in 2007, issues in the headlines include intercultural competences and the contribution which the culture sector makes to promoting creativity in wider society. A Green Paper on unlocking the potential of cultural and other creative industries is in the pipeline. In external relations , recent developments include €22 million available in the new Eastern Partnership culture programme, and €30 million is earmarked in the 10 th European Development Fund for culture cooperation between EU and the ACP States.

The Forum is part of a three-day series of events, beginning on 28 September with the EU Culture Programme conference and the award of the first ever European Union Prize for Literature by President of the European Commission José Manuel Barroso. A concert on 29 September in the evening, "Musical Europe", brings together Jordi Savall and his ensemble Le Concert des Nations with two of the orchestras supported by the EU's Culture Programme: the European Union Baroque Orchestra and the European Union Youth Orchestra. A seminar for culture journalists is organised in parallel to the Forum for a group of 50 journalists from across Europe.

This is the second such Culture Forum; the first was held in Lisbon on 26 - 28 September 2007.

European Agenda for Culture:

Policy background for the European Culture Forum:

Culture site for journalists:

European Union Prize for Literature

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