Towards an EU strategy for international cultural relations: a regional contribution
Brussels, 22 May 2017, Committee of the Regions (Venue: 99-101 Rue Belliard - 1040 Brussels)
In the context of the anniversary of the Treaties of Rome and the 2018 European Year of Cultural Heritage, European regions aim to contribute to the Joint Communication "Towards an EU strategy for International Cultural Relations".
The 22 May conference will address the issue of international cultural relations focusing on regions' leading role. Regions are essential actors to preserve and valorise the cultural diversity among EU member states, but also to disseminate the future EU strategy for International Cultural Relations abroad.
Cultural diversity is a fundamental value of the European Union. Recently a change in the paradigm towards recognition of culture as a crucial sector for European social and economic development and as a driver for growth, has taken place. In this process, partnership is a key tool to achieve success. Partnership means working together with the multiple actors involved at the different institutional levels, as well as with the civil society. In this regard, regions have a crucial role to play through their international and European relations. In addition, regions are better placed to protect and foster their own cultural diversity.
Building both on the experience of European regions and of the representatives from the EU institutions, international organisations, cultural stakeholders and the European regions themselves will discuss the best way to work together and contribute in close cooperation towards a cross-sectoral and territorial approach to culture.
The conference is promoted by the Regional Initiative for Culture and Creativity (RICC), an informal European network comprised of 25 regional governments, and lead by the Basque Country, Emilia-Romagna and Friuli Venezia Giulia regions. RICC aim is to work with regional governments and territorial stakeholders on three objectives: to advocate cultural and creative policies, to participate in relevant EU funding programmes, and to work under the Smart Specialisation RIS3 guidance.