ECP and Friends

Institute for Cultural Diplomacy
Mark Donfried, Berlin:

Cultural diplomacy is about access. We focus on academic exchange programs
that allow students to study abroad.

The ICD Academy for Cultural Diplomacy is a department within the ICD that
focuses on the research and promotion of cultural diplomacy. Academy programs
are generally internationally focused and are open to individuals of all ages
and backgrounds. The Academy organizes two different types of program – Academy
Sessions and international conferences.

Academy Sessions are weeklong programs that take place in Berlin throughout
the year and offer individuals of all backgrounds and levels of experience the
opportunity to learn more about the field of cultural diplomacy, take part in
structured group discussions with speakers and other participants, and build up
their personal networks.

The ICD organizes international conferences throughout the year, developed
according to particular themes, which bring together larger groups of
participants for lectures and seminars lead by renowned figures from politics
and international relations.


A Soul for Europe
ECP Member Susana Marques, Guimaraes & ECP
Senator Steve Austen, Amsterdam

A Europe of the Europeans
There is a need to clarify the
relationship between European institutions and the citizens. We believe that it
is possible to create a Europe of the Europeans, rather than just a Europe of
institutions and regulations. It is our responsibility to take a hand in
Europe’s political mechanisms. We need new communication paths and innovative
co-operation models between civil society and the European institutions,
national governments and other authorities.

Culture holds Europe together
Building Europe means
integrating national histories, value systems, world views and fostering
intercultural dialogue. We believe that the power of culture must be harnessed
for the European integration more efficiently. All fields of policy beyond the
cultural sector, from social to foreign affairs, must develop a cultural
component. We do not lobby for the financial support of the cultural sector, but
rather we see culture as essential for the full development of Europe’s
potentials. This process should be a bottom-up rather than a top-down process
driven by civil society from all sectors.

Felix Meritis Foundation
Linda Bouws, Amsterdam

Felix Meritis is an independent European centre for art, culture and science
and a national and international meeting place in Amsterdam. 

We believe in (the need for) cultural diversity in Europe as an engine of
progress and social cohesion. That is why we conduct a public European cultural
dialogue with individuals in Amsterdam, the Netherlands and further afield and
take part in National and International cultural networks.

Through deeper understanding and dialogue with different groups in the
Netherlands and abroad, we strengthen the insight into and understanding of the
European process of cultural unification among citizens of Amsterdam and the

The motto of Felix Meritis is “Connecting Cultures”.


Yulia Bardoun, (Kalingrad)

Deputy Director of Kaliningrad branch of the National Center for Contemporary
Art and Director of an NGO Agency in Support of Cultural Initiatives and
Leadership called ‘Tranzit’.

“I work as a social interpreter in a NGO with no governmental funding
starting ten years ago as an individual person. What made it possible for me to
reach a level of cultural policy making?
I realized it’s all about networking
and staying connected with people like we do here at the ECP. It’s all about
learning and sharing, asking ourselves who we are and eventually about

Institute of Ideas
Claire Fox, London:

In the
Institute of Ideas we treat people seriously. Our aim was to encourage people to
ask difficult questions on politics. Over the last 15 years, the arts have been
asked to justify themselves to the public – what does art do to justify the
financing? As it is now, the arts are unable to stand on their own two feet.

The Institute of Ideas’ mission is to expand the boundaries of public debate
by organising conferences, discussions and salons, and publishing written
conversations and exchanges.

Since 2000, the Institute of Ideas has
created a forum for intelligent and lively public debate of complex social
issues. The IoI grew out of three years of highly successful events organised by
LM (formerly Living Marxism) magazine. These events were commended for daring to
ask difficult questions, and for inviting panellists to speak outside of their
professional roles. Their success proved a widespread thirst for lively debate.
Freed from the constraints of demands for practical policy, participants became
creative thinkers. In this spirit, we realised that it was time to take the
initiative and to set up a more permanent space for debate, a new academy of

The Festival Berlin
Florian B. Mueck, Germany

Inspired by his time as an Erasmus student, Florian Mueck wants to give
Europe an identity and bring it together as a whole. “Why is it that so many
people out there aren’t passionate about Europe? It’s like soccer; we all play
on the same field and we wear the Euro currency as the same dress. So why can’t
different nations pass the ball to each other? The answer is, they don’t know
each other.”

Through the Festival Berlin in 2011, he plans on bringing
people from all over Europe and the world together, make them known and share
the same joy of a European culture.

“Youth ECP”
Jenny Garcia, London, Sofie Roehrig

“Youth ECP” should be an ECP for young people in the
ages between 20 and 30 years with an active role in the culture sector. We wish
to provide a platform for young people and encourage open exchange through think
tanks. The background of “Youth ECP” is the thought that every young citizen
should be enabled with the knowledge to deal with a more open and complex
society but also to benefit from the many advantages such a society gives us.
This project idea will be further developed during 2010.

European Research Project
Lyudmila Nurse, Oxford

Being passionate about Europe is the red thread of this project: to use
sources of new ideas to give global change in the 21st  century sense and
support a European identity in the making.

Oxford XXI is a UK-based NGO (non-governmental organisation) with a
multidisciplinary global network of research associates.

The founders of Oxford XXI have backgrounds in academic research and
technical assistance and sector restructuring consultancy projects in Europe,
South America, The Middle East, Africa, Central and East Asia. Continued
cooperation with the ECP is foreseen in 2010.

“Quality of Life” – Culture and Health
Gunilla von Bahr, Milos
Pekny (Sweden):

- Gunilla von Bahr: “Use music for a better life, love and understanding –
just play, just come close to the human beings around you and bond across
borders. Music is more than just music. Music is Life! Music is
“Quality of Life” is situated in the National Centre for Culture and
Health in Gothenburg.

Milos Pekny stands behind “The Culture and Brain
Health Initiative” and uses music in stroke rehabilitation.



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