What we do

Throughout the year EFA offers many activities for the benefit of its members:


  • EFA Delegations: meetings with peers taking place around the globe (Asia, the Arab world, Africa, Latin America).
  • EFA Think Tank: a meeting format for artistic festival directors actively engaged in European policy making.
  • EFA BOOKS: a books series highlighting current issues in the festival business.
  • Blog Festival Bytes: a space for story-telling about festivals.
  • Festival Launches in Brussels: EFA supports its members in presenting their festival to the European media, policy makers, cultural stakeholders and interested audiences.
Fergus Linehan, Director Edinburgh International Festival, presenting the festival in Brussels


  • EFA General Assembly and Conference: the EFA festival community gathers once a year and is a unique opportunity for members to meet 100 festival colleagues, to exchange, share, discover, and build trust.
  • Solidarity actions: EFA engages in collective, international actions to support the members in their singular local situations.
  • Collective and Affiliate Members Meeting: meeting for EFA’s regional/national festival associations and cultural networks.
  • The Festival Academy's Alumni Network: the Alumni network of The Festival Academy is the platform for the next generation of risk-taking artistic festival directors.
  • EFA Meets its Regions: meetings focussing on the relation of regional festival issues in the global context.
  • Participation and representation: EFA offers its extended network of partners to its members and thus enlarges the span of connections: European House for Culture; A Soul for Europe; Pearle – Performing Arts Employers Associations League Europe; item – international network for contemporary performing arts; International Music Council; REMA – European Early Music Network; Association of Asian Performing Arts Festivals (AAPAF); AFRIFESTNET etc.
  • EFFE – Europe for Festivals, Festivals for Europe: the Pilot Project gives visibility to and creates a new community of festivals.
2015 EFA General Assembly in Ostrava, Czech Republic (Photo by Jakub Mičovský)

Knowledge and Training

  • The Festival Academy: the Atelier for Young Festival Managers, Festival Readings and Training for Young Production Managers are exclusive, international, intergenerational training formats to promote young talent and offer suitable life-long learning opportunities in artistic festival programming and production, being extended to various parts of the world with tailor-made editions.
  • Pearle* workshops: provide better knowledge of legislation and on how to deal more efficiently with taxation in cross-border mobility and co-productions.
  • Working Groups on Artistic Collaboration, Festival Communication, New Business Models: meetings for those eager to engage in co-productions/co-programming, in charge of communicating the artistic programmes, and responsible for finding financial support to make the artistic vision happen.
  • Access to research: first-hand access to newly released studies and contacts to a network of researchers.
  • Contacts: an exclusive database includes contacts to the cultural press and media, cultural networks, cultural ministries, EU institutions, and others in about 40 countries.
Atelier Edinburgh 2014 (photo by Clark James)

Policy Development

  • Annual round table with EU Commissioner for Culture: festival directors have the opportunity to discuss matters of interest directly with EU policy makers.
  • Participation in the international debate on culture: EFA and its members act as speakers in international conferences, participants in exclusive round tables, and as mentors or presenters in training programmes.
  • European House for Culture and partners: the intermediators for EFA to carry our voice toward EU decision making bodies such as the European Commission and the European Parliament.
  • Participation in EU initiatives: EFA is a strong partner in EU initiatives and actions and a continuous dialogue partner in various policy fields.
2014 EFA Round Table with Commissioner Navracsics (c) European Union 2014

Information and Communication

  • EFA website: informs audiences across Europe and beyond about EFA’s members and activities.
  • Social Media: extended reach of the festival community online via facebook (EFA and The Festival Academy), twitter and youtube.
  • EFACTS: newsletters to EFA members providing information updates on anything festival and culture.
  • FestFlash: newsletter to the broad public with news from the broader festival community.
  • What I Heard About the (Arts) World: an amuse bouche of the most interesting things EFA members are offering and some special suggestions from outside the membership.
We cater to the needs you can’t quench on your own.