EUNIC General Assembly Brussels
On 7 and 8 December, the EUNIC General Assembly welcomed EUNIC members across the network to Brussels. At the meeting, the network elected Liviu Jicman, President of Romanian Cultural Institute, as new EUNIC Vice-President and welcomed Kirsten van den Hul, Director of DutchCulture, to the Board of Directors. The network also approved a new EUNIC Cluster in Uganda.
The General Assembly was started with member-led discussions on recent topics and activities relevant for EUNIC: Kirsten van den Hul shared insights on decolonising cultural relations from the recent online Knowledge Sharing Workshop, co-hosted DutchCulture, stressing the importance of exploring decolonisation from diverse perspectives, as part of the Fair Collaboration work of EUNIC.
In the aftermath of the EUNIC Climate Culture(s) Creative Lab in Berlin last summer, EUNIC members continue to bring in cultural relations perspectives on enabling climate action. In light of COP28, the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Dubai, Scott McDonald, Chief Executive of British Council, highlighted the special role and responsibility of cultural organisations to engage with climate action on a global level.
Following a short video presentation from the recent regional cluster seminar in Hanoi, Vietnam, Agnieszka Skieterska from Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Poland and Liviu Jicman, President of the Romanian Cultural Institute, reflected on the focus meeting in Timișoara, Romania and recent developments of the EUNIC cluster network in the region.
What better way to drive social change than through culture & education?Scott McDonald, Chief Executive British Council
With now 140 clusters across 103 countries EUNIC has become a truly global actor. At the General Assembly, the EUNIC Cluster Roadmap was presented to pave the way for a collective strategic refresh and to further develop and support EUNIC clusters. The roadmap is addressing three main points: Cluster purpose, governance and management, as well as communication and engagement. In a strategic discussion membes gave focused input on the cluster roadmap documents.
In a discussion led by external guests Annica Floren from DG INTPA and Christophe Masson from DG NEAR of the European Commission, the network exchanged on EU programs for Sub-Saharan Africa and the Eastern Partnership, and explored pathways towards inclusive societies and cultural relations partnerships in these crucial regions. Joined by guest speaker Stefano Sannino, Secretary General of the European External Action Service, members shared viewpoints on strengthening the Team Europea approach in culture and the global dimension of the EU's evolving commitment to international cultural relations.
We need to create common projects & spaces where local partners can be integrated & included. EUNIC has the strength as a fantastic network to map activities.Stefano Sannino, Secretary General of the European External Action Service