EFA discussed a ‘Citizens’ Europe’ at Berlin Conference 2010

2 December 2010

On 20 November 2010 in Berlin, the European Festivals Association (EFA) – represented by EFA Secretary General Kathrin Deventer and EFA European Projects Manager Eva Nunes – participated in the fourth Berlin Conference. Organised by “A Soul for Europe” (ASfE) it explored issues related to the question: how can citizens play a bigger role in creating Europe? Eva Nunes, EFA European Project Managers, reports back: The European House for Culture was one of the Partners of the 2010 edition of the Berlin Conference. Not only it collaborated in the preparation of the Conference but was also represented with the participation of House Members (Kathrin Deventer, Frans de Ruiter, Nele Hertling, Hugo De Greef, Volker Hassemer, Valeria Marcolin) and Partners (ECSA, Association Marcel Hicter). This conference was based on the conviction that Europe has to become a concern of its citizens, not only of its institutions. We are in need of an active European: A Europe of the citizens, not merely for the citizens. A new understanding of (cultural) citizenship is required to create Europe from the bottom up. How can citizens play a bigger role in creating Europe? How can they take a hand in Europe’s political mechanisms? And how can culture, business and politics foster such a development? The main topics of the Berlin Conference 2010 were: The Role of the Citizen in Building Europe • Challenging citizens to become actively engaged in the process of European unification • Opportunities and examples of transnational citizenship • The role of artists, politicians and businesspeople in developing active and transnational citizenship The Image of Europe • Cinema and the power of images in boosting the way Europeans identify with their home continent • European images in shaping and strengthening the emotional quality of Europe • Concrete models: pan-European programme for film education in schools, EU representations as Houses of European Film New Forms of Cooperation between Culture, Business and Politics • Business and culture with shared responsibility for the future of Europe • Dialogue between business and culture beyond business sponsorship and creative industries • Specific steps to be taken for the establishment of a European Culture and Economy Platform • Discussion on the conclusions drawn from the Istanbul Forum 2010 and the Berlin Conference 2008 This very successful edition of the Berlin Conference counted with a large participation of young engaged Europeans sharing their thoughts and proposals with key names of the artistic scene like Wim Wenders and Rui Horta, renowned intellectuals, committed representatives of the European Parliament and European Commission and high level representatives from the business sector. With the support of ASfE’s Parliamentarian Working Group, the developed ideas will be transferred into European decision-making. Related links: • Website 2010 Berlin ConferenceA Soul for EuropeEuropean House for CultureEFA Picture Gallery: Impressions from the 2010 Berlin Conference