Foto: Katja Illner © NRWKS

10 Years International Visitors Programme: »Synergize! Culture in Democratic Action«

Anniversary conference

The International Visitors Programme at the NRW KULTURsekretariat celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2019. This was grounds for a one-day interactive conference with international participation on 12th November at tanzhaus nrw in Düsseldorf. It was opened by Dr Hildegard Kaluza (head of the Cultural Department, Ministry of Culture and Science of North Rhine-Westphalia), Dr Christian Esch (director, NRW KULTURsekretariat) and Dr Katharina von Ruckteschell-Katte (director of the Goethe-Institute London and regional director of the Goethe-Institutes in North-western Europe). The keynote speaker was Mike van Graan (president of the African Cultural Policy Network).

Entitled »SYNERGIZE! Culture in Democratic Action: The Socio-Political Impact of International Networks and Cultural Relations«, the event focussed on the socio-political influence of international networks and cultural relations that had connected up the many alumni from the past ten years. Amongst others the conference participants explored the following questions and themes: What is the effect of international cultural relations on a democratic coexistence? How important are personal meetings to these relationships? How can intercultural networks be expanded and made accessible to all? The event was enriched by the presence of 21 alumni guests of the International Visitors Programme – as speakers and representatives – and their treasure trove of direct experience.

A dossier with the conclusions of the conference was published in April 2020. Furthermore, alongside an online live stream of the conference a short film documentation is available online since April 2020.