Edinburgh International Culture Summit special edition 2020

12 August 2020

The Edinburgh International Culture Summit organises a special edition 2020 online from 22 August! The Summit will focus on three areas of discussion this year: Culture and Education, Culture and Social Cohesion, and Culture in Vibrant Communities. It seeks to emphasise the importance of artistic exchange in a world that is increasingly complex and multi-lateral.

From Monday 24 to Wednesday 26 August three Summit Webinars will be held online, one on each theme, with interactive panel sessions and contributors coming from various sectors such as the arts, economy, education, architecture, science, philanthropy and Ministers of Culture from around the world to examine the powerful role, and transformational potential, of culture in key aspects of our lives and particularly in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Monday 24th August, 5pm (BST) - Culture in Vibrant Communities: As people across the world shelter in place, we begin to lose touch with the physical structures and markers of everyday life. What are the places we miss and what are the policies, funds and infrastructure required to sustain those places? The Special Edition re-examines our understanding and organising of cultural space, looking at the future of cities. This webinar responds to the Culture in Vibrant Communities themed film and invites participants to consider a holistic approach to architecture and reflect on the power of social and cultural infrastructure to build trust and preserve cultures.

    The panel includes:
    Architect and Professor at Harvard University Rahul Mehrotra, Chief Executive Officer of Sistema Scotland Nicola Killean, Alejandra Frausto, Minister of Culture Mexico. Chaired by Presiding Officer of The Scottish Parliament, Ken Macintosh.

  • Tuesday 25th August, 5pm (BST) - Culture and Education: As governments and educational institutions grapple with how to adapt to our new reality, what could the future of education look like? Engaging experts from multidisciplinary fields—from music to neuroscience, epidemiology to economics—the Special Edition presents a growing body of social and scientific research on how culturally rich experiences enhance skills such as empathy, executive function, and creativity. This webinar is a response to the Culture and Education themed film and investigates how education systems and arts organisations can work together to unlock and invest in human potential.

    The panel will include:
    Assistant Research Professor of Psychology at the Brain and Creativity Institute, University of Southern California Assal Habibi with others to be announced. 

  • Wednesday 26th August, 5pm (BST) - Culture and Social Cohesion: In a time of physical distance, how can art provide connection, inspire hope and help us heal? The Special Edition reflects on the power of art in times of crisis and the role of a trusted culture sector in reimagining the future. Examining the role culture plays in tackling inequality, displacement and prejudice, this webinar responds to the Culture and Social Cohesion themed film and focuses on the importance of international cooperation and cultural understanding.

    The panel includes:
    Chief Economist of the Bank of England Andy Haldane, President of The Aladdin Foundation Leah Pisar, with others to be announced.

If you want to take part in these conversations, you can fill in the registration form on the Edinburgh International Culture Summit's website.