Our contributors are all leaders in their respective fields and come from key stakeholder organisations, from government to local authorities and non-profit and private sector.
President, Culture Action Europe
Robert Manchin is the president of Culture Action Europe and the President of Europa Nova. He is also a Distinguished Senior Scholar at the University of Pannonia Koszeg Knowledge Center. Previously, Robert Manchin was the Senior Vice President of Gallup Organisation, Princeton and the Chairman and Managing Director of Gallup Europe.
Dr. Andras Osner
Deputy Mayor for Social Affairs, Education, Sport, Health and Culture, City of Konstanz
Head of Cultural Office, Canton Thurgau
Alex Meszmer is a visual artist, curator and a member of the National Committee of VISARTE – Association of Professional Artists, Switzerland. Meszmer works closely with IGBK Berlin as an expert for the European Commission for questions regarding artists’ mobility. Together with his partner Reto Mueller, he is organising a digital archive about the Swiss village Pfyn, running the Transitory Museum, an ever-changing museum, searching for the beauty of democracy with their club ‘désirer’.
Regine Helbling, art historian. She worked as a freelance curator, art critic and author about art history and book illustrations. 1996 Curator and co-director of Nidwaldner Museum, Stans. 2007/08 project director of "Glaubens-Kultur“, cooperation project of Pro Helvetias ‚echos‘ program. 2005–2009 co-initiator and project support of Sigmar Polkes new church windows commission at Grossmünster church Zürich. Since 2008 director of Visarte Switzerland. She lives and works in Zurich.
Sarantos Georgios Zervoulakos
Director, Eteria Filon
Born in 1980 in Thessaloniki, Greece, he studied Theatre-Directing at the Max Reinhardt Seminar in Vienna. During his studies he represented the Max Reinhardt Seminar in several international theatre festivals in Germany, Austria and France. In 2011 Sarantos Georgios Zervoulakos was nominated for the “Best New Artist” Nestroy Award for his direction of David Greig and Gordon McIntyre’s play “Midsummer” at the Burgtheater in Vienna. In 2016 he founded the initiative ETERIA FILON (Society of Friends) and started to focus on working on international and multilingual theatre productions between Germany, Austria and Greece.
Secretary-General, Culture Action Europe
Tere Badia holds a degree in Art History from the Universitat de Barcelona and a MA in Information and Knowledge Society by the IN3 (Internet interdisciplinary Institute) of the UOC.
She is dedicated to cultural research and production in various formats. She has carried out several studies on cultural policies, networks and R+D+i for visual arts. Tere has curated exhibitions and projects of contemporary art. She has been professionally linked to the Interarts Observatory in the 90’s, the communication and multimedia agency Goetzinger&Komplizen (Karlsruhe). Tere coordinated the platform DISONANCIAS in Catalonia for the promotion of the relations between artists and research departments of companies and organizations, as well as the network of visual arts production spaces of Catalonia xarxaprod. Until January 2018, Tere Badia was director of Hangar – center for artistic production and research in Barcelona.
Member of the Board, European Network of Cultural Centres (ENCC)
Piotr holds an MA in Arts (culture studies), and an MSc in cultural management, project coordination, fundraising and entrepreneurship. Expert on territorial development and networking. Researcher in the field of culture and experienced field worker in urban and rural communities. Specialized in cultural diplomacy and international cooperation. Consultant for national and EU cultural policies. Professional musician and producer. Strongly supporting local activism and process of building social relations. Secretary and Board Member of the European Network of Cultural Centres ENCC in Brussels. Coordinator of the ENCC International Working Group on Territorial Development, gathering experts, animators and policy makers.
Secretary-General, Association des Centres culturels de rencontre (ACCR)
Christian Jelk is an architect, artist, curator and independent researcher. Practice in drawing as a fundamental research tool and copper printing at the ateliers Raymon Meyer. He is Vice President of Visarte and responsible for the development of an ideas lab about the definition and recognition of the fundamental role of artistic research. He lives and works in Sainte Croix VD.
Co-founder, Ideas Factory /Sofia/
Yanina Taneva is co-founder of Ideas Factory /Sofia/ – a creative hub hosting the interdisciplnary and cross-sectoral processes on co-creating long lasting innovative solutions to problems in cities as well as rural areas. active nationally in Bulgaria, the Balkans and Europe. Recently Yanina has been working on teh “BABA Residence” – an intense residency program connecting young urban professionals with elderly hosts. The Ideas factory has worked with ca. 400 changemakers across Europe, helping them build feasible, adequate solutions by providing capacity and experiential building programs, mentoring, networking and funding opportunities.
Committee on Culture, United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG)
Jordi Baltà Portolés works as an advisor for the Committee on Culture of United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), providing research and advice to local governments with an interest in developing cultural policies and sustainable development. He is also a freelance researcher, consultant and trainer in the areas of cultural policy and international affairs, for a range of organisations. Previously he was a researcher and project coordinator at the Interarts Foundation (2001-14). He is a member of the UNESCO Expert Facility for the implementation of the Convention on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions. Jordi teaches at the Online MA in Cultural Management of the Open University of Catalonia (UOC) and the University of Girona (UdG), as well as the Degree in International Relations of Universitat Ramon Llull (URL).
Fernando Garcia Dory
INLAND - Campo Adentro
INLAND is a platform for collective agricultural, social and cultural production, and a collaborative agency. It was started in 2009 by Fernando Garcia Dory as a project about an organization that engages territories, culture, and social change. During its first stage (2010-2013) and taking Spain as it’s initial case study, INLAND comprised an international conference, artistic production with 22 artists in residence in the same number of villages across the country, and nationwide exhibitions and presentations. Today, INLAND functions as a collective and works as a para-institution to open spaces for land-based collaborations, economies and communities-of-practice as a substrate for post-Contemporary Art cultural forms.
Director, Deveron Projects
Claudia Zeiske is the director of Deveron Projects an international residency programme in Huntly in northern Scotland. Here, the town is the venue rather than a gallery or arts centre. Claudia has a unique curatorial interest based on a balanced approach between artistic criticality and community involvement through developing projects with artists from across the globe.
Adela Bertolo graduated in Journalism from the University of Santiago de Compostela (Galicia) with a specialization in Cultural Communication. She specializes in theatrical improvisation and management of cultural projects and events. Since 2016 she has collaborated with Teatr Brama, a diverse, multinational ensemble dedicated to a common artistic goal realized by researching the heights and depths of emotion, recalling heritage and reacting to the reality of life. Brama utilizes non-formal and informal educational methods to empower people to use art to improve their lives and world.
CKI/Center for Kunst & Interkultur
Niels Righolt has been the Director for CKI – the Danish Center for Arts & Interculture. The centre is a national knowledge, competence and communication center for international culture and cultural diversity. Niels has a broad background and experience from more than 25 years in the arts field. At present Niels is a board member of among others the Audience Europe Network, the theatre Inkonst in Malmö, Sweden and Teatergrad in Copenhagen, Denmark. Niels has a background in Literature, Modern Culture & Cultural Communication and Spanish Culture & Language from the University of Copenhagen.
Creative Europe Desk Germany
Anja Dietzmann has been working for the Creative Europe Desk KULTUR, the national contact point for cultural funding in the EU, since the beginning of 2017. As a counsellor for cultural actors from all sectors who are planning a European cooperation project, she advises on the funding programme Creative Europe, sub-programme Culture. Together with the CED Culture team of experts, she explains how cultural funding works at the European level and advises on project-specific applications and carries out individual application checks. She studied political science in Leipzig, Jena and Lyon and was active in Leipzig's independent dance scene.
Pro Kultur Kanton Zürich
Sandi Paucic is an art historian and art manager. From 1989-2000, he was Editor in chief of the Swiss Dictionary of arts at the Swiss Institute for Art Research, Zurich. From 2000-2011, Director of the the F+F School of Art and Design, Zurich and from 2011-2016, Co-director and and teacher of art history. Since 2011, he has been the Project leader for Swiss Participation Venice Biennale at the Swiss Arts Council Pro Helvetia and since 2016, President of Visarte Zurich (Swiss visual artists association).
Iranzu Guijarro & Marina Urrikoetxea
Association Karraskan (KULTURSISTEMA)
KULTURSISTEMA proposes a matrix (or set of matrices) used for categorisation in order to interpret and map cultural and creative ecosystems. It aims to reflect their diversity in terms of sectors and subsectors, links to the value chain, the typology of agents who are engaged in this area, and the characteristics of the impacts and fundamental returns.
Hugo Branco & Jorge Casas
Palp Festival (CH)
Whether you wish to relive the magical atmosphere of a masked ball in a medieval castle, enjoy rock concerts in the stunning settings of the Swiss Alps, brunch on a mountain chairlift, discover an arts & collections exhibition in various locals’ homes of an old town or taste a raclette while dancing to electro DJ sets, the PALP Festival invites you to discover the canton of Valais through unusual and unforgettable events. Launched in 2011, the PALP is an interdisciplinary festival which will bring you unique experiences by perfectly combining all the senses.
Benjamin Kreibich & Annelies Hell
Cristina Da Milano
President, ECCOM & Vice-President, Culture Action Europe
Cristina holds a degree in Archaeology (University of Rome); the Diploma of Fine and Decorative Arts from Antiquity to 1450 (Royal Society of Arts, London); the MA in Museum Studies (Department of Museum Studies, University of Leicester); the MA in Technological Instruments for the Economic Evaluation of Cultural and Environmental Heritage (University of Ferrara). From 1996, she is a member of ECCOM (European Centre for Cultural Organisation and Management) and in 2010 she became president of it. She has been part of several research projects at a national and international level on the issue of the social role of museums and of lifelong learning processes within museums, subjects on which she has published several papers. She has also managed many European funded projects within the framework of the programmes Lifelong Learning 2007-2013, Culture 2007-2013 and Creative Europe programme. She lectures in many postgraduate courses and Masters. Since 2015 she is a member of the board of Culture Action Europe.
Visual Artist (IE)
Deirdre O’Mahony is a visual artist whose practice is informed by a deep interest in rural sustainability, farming, food security and rural/urban relationships. For more than two decades she has investigated the political ecology of rural places through public engagement, archival and moving image installation, critical writing and cultural production.
SPUD (2008 – 2019) was designed as a way of opening a public conversation on the role of the potato in Irish and global culture. Events, feasts, moving-image installations, plantings and publications reflected on the relevance and use-value of tacit agricultural knowledge today, highlighting the potatoes’ importance within global food production.
Dritëro Kasapi is the Managing Artistic Director of the Theatre Department at Riksteatern
(The National Touring Theatre of Sweden) since November 2018.During his long career within the performing arts Dritëro has operated both as an artist, in roles as theatre and TV director and as a successful cultural organiser. In his work, he has always worked across national borders and with a special emphasis on cross-national cooperation. As an artist, he has produced and presented his work in Sweden, Germany, France, Italy, Austria, Great Britain, Macedonia, Bosnia, Bulgaria etc.
Joanjo Esteban & Carme Rodriguez
CCCA Sant Boi
CCCA is an space and a gallery of community art located in a big town of the periphery of Barcelona called Sant Boi. We want to break the idea of contemporary art as a thing only intellectual. The center works with and for the community. It promotes education through creativity and stimulates the community through artistic projects.
Head, Culture Office Münsterland e.V.
Andre Sebastian is head of the cultural office at Münsterland e.V., one of the strongest regional management organizations in Germany. Under the title "Networking. Coordinate. Fördern ", he is responsible for the implementation of the state-supported program Regional Cultural Policy. Since 2017 he has also been the project manager and co-initiator of the transnational art and cultural project taNDem.
Already during his humanities studies at the Westfälische Wilhelms - University Münster he started to work at the theater. In 2015, he completed his extra-occupational training as a cultural manager with the topic "Regional Cultural Policy in the Münsterland. Communication strategies for an improved perception and marketing of the funding program ".
Project Manager, EUREGIO
Desiree Brüning is the project manager of the transnational art and cultural project taNDem at the German-Dutch Zweckverband EUREGIO in Gronau. With this activity she has her German-Dutch background and her master's program "Intercultural Communication" University of Utrecht (NL).
After completing her studies in 2017, she started working at EUREGIO, where she first worked in the the cross-border labor market. She now manages the taNDem project, where she is responsible for the general Project management, event organization, communication and contact with the artists. An exciting and versatile place with both cross-border potential and challenges.
Art Museum Thurgau
Haus zur Glocke
Now in its fourth year of activities as an artist-run alternative art space, ‘Haus zur Glocke’ has expanded and deepened its programs. Throughout 2019, it is presenting four multi-week exhibition projects in addition to Saturday events each month. While "manner of work" (in German ‘Arbeitsweisen’) or site-specific art projects are its focus, the question of cooperation in art is further raised. Regular meetings at the large table in the art restaurant of the house have continued to facilitate and promote the exchange of views on diverse interpretations of the world and contemporary art.
Lars Ebert (*Heidelberg, Germany, 1976) is managing board member and programme co-ordinator of the cultural centre Castrum Peregrini in Amsterdam. He also works as an independent advisor in the area of higher education and the arts for clients such as the European League of Institutes of the Arts (ELIA) the primary network for Higher Arts Education in Europe for which he has previously served in various roles, a.o. as deputy director. Lars is co-founder and chair of the board of EQ-Arts, the first transnational sector specific accreditation agency for the arts. He has extensive expertise in developing and implementing EU funded projects and engages in organisational development, both on a strategic as well as on operational level as an external reviewer or critical friend. He is a frequent facilitator, moderator and speaker during international events. Lars holds a postgraduate degree in theology.
Arenenberg Castle - Napoleon Museum (CH)
Corinne is Coordinator of Michael Culture (Aisbl) since 2013, the European trans -sectorial network for valorization of digital cultural heritage (public & private cultural institutions, ministries of Culture & Universities). Before she started to work full time at Michael Culture, Corinne worked for Dédale (2013-2015) (Culture + social innovation + technology) as Manager of European and International development where she developed two Creative Europe projects linked to art, culture – public spaces and empowerment of citizens and research projects linked to digital and social innovation. Corinne is now in-charge of coordination and development of Michael Culture focusing on relations with ministries and relevant communities (culture, research, art, technology…) and she manages the European projects where the association is involved, mainly under H2020 program.
Yamam Al- Zubaidi has worked with EU equality law and human rights for more than 10 years, both in Sweden and internationally. He is today the Equality & Diversity Manager at the National Theatre of Sweden (RIKSTEATERN). Yamam is on the executive board of Culture Action Europe. He is also on the board of directors of the Swedish National Council of Adult Education.
Dr. Simona Neumann
Simona Neumann is CEO for Timisoara 2021 - European Capital of Culture (Romania) since January 2013. She has successfully led the 4 year bidding process of the city for the European title. She has 19 years of professional experience in managing multi-stakeholder programmes in Romanian and international context in culture, education, public diplomacy, and civil society development. She worked at: the European Commission, Brussels; UNDP, Bucharest; the Institute for International Education, Washington, DC; the West University and the Intercultural Institute both in Timisoara. She holds a Ph.D. in Public Diplomacy (Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj) and specialized in strategic management of non-profit organisations at Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government.
General Manager, Interarts
Antonio is general manager of Interarts in Barcelona, a non-governmental organization specialized in international cultural co-operation since 2005. He is member of the commission for the adaptation to the European Space for Higher Education of the “European Master of Professional specialization, Inter-Mediterranean Mediation: Economic inversion and intercultural integration” (MIM) of the Universidad Autónoma de Barcelona, Spain. He has worked in the information department of the Universal Forum of Cultures – Barcelona 2004, S.A and previously to the International Organization for Migration – Mission in Italy, coordinating office for the Mediterranean. He holds a PhD in Tourism Sciences (specialization in the economy of culture and cultural marketing), a Business Law degree, and a Master’s Degree in Inter-Mediterranean Mediation. During his career he has dabbled in publishing some articles in the following areas: Tourism, Migration, International Relations and Statistics.
Deputy Head, Creative Europe Unit
Pedro is the Deputy Head of the Creative Europe Unit since January 2018. Between 1987 and 2014, he has occupied several positions within the European Commission at the Directorate General Education, Youth, Sport and Culture, namely in the fields of Sport and Communication. During 2014, he was directly responsible of the Communication team, which launched the Erasmus+ and Creative Europe programmes. Between 2015 and 2017 he was Director for Social Innovation and Empowerment at the ICSS, an NGO based in Qatar, where he was responsible for the development of initiatives and projects based on the educational and social power of sport. www.linkedin.com/in/pevela
European Economic and Social Committee
EESC Member from the UK, Rapporteur on 3 recent opinions – the EU RDP 14-2020, Future of European Villages and the Contribution of rural culture to the European Year of Cultural Heritage. Member of the ENRD Thematic Group on Smart Villages. Vice President of WCVA, Wales Council for Voluntary Action. Farmer and author.
Voices of Culture
Else Christensen-Redzepovic is expert/advisor on international cultural relations, EU
processes, policies and instruments related to culture. She works with public authorities,
networks, institutions, organizations and NGO´s on policy, strategy, governance and action for
sustainable cultural and creative development. Else has track record on international project
management and European Capitals of Culture bidding processes. She was LEADER manager
and established the first Local Action Group in Denmark. Else manages “Voices of Culture” - a
Structured Dialogue between stakeholders in the cultural and creative sectors in the EU and
the European Commission.
Member of the European Parliament
Julie Ward, elected in 2014, is a Member of the European Parliament for the North West England region for the Labour Party. Before being elected as MEP, she was part of an international delegation to Belfast to discuss the role of the arts in peace processes and ran a social enterprise. She is an active campaigner for equal rights and social justice and campaigns against violence against women; organizing local events for One Billion Rising.
Ward completed her Master’s degree in Education and International Development from Newcastle in 2012. She is also a member of Committee on Culture and Education (CULT) and Delegation for relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo.