Vol. 11, no 7, Monday, April 4, 2011
Efforts to implement the Convention on the Diversity of Cultural Expressions are underway!
IN THIS ISSUE :
The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and the Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions came into force on March 18, 2007. At the first session of the Conference of Parties to the Convention in June 2007, the Intergovernmental Committee was given a mandate to develop the necessary operational directives for implementing the Convention. Since then, four ordinary and two extraordinary sessions have been held, for a total of six.
The second session of the Conference of Parties, which took place in Paris on June 15 and 16, 2009, saw the adoption of operational directives concerning nine articles of the Convention. The Intergovernmental Committee was mandated to continue developing operational directives.
At press time, 117 Parties (116 states and the European Community as a regional economic integration organization) had ratified the treaty. Efforts to implement the treaty are well underway, but the mobilization campaign to encourage Member States who haven’t already done so to ratify the treaty must continue with commitment and conviction. The Convention’s legitimacy will be directly proportional to the number of countries from all parts of the world that ratify, accept, approve, or join the treaty.
Minister of Culture, Communications and the Status of Women Christine St-Pierre, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Regions and Land Occupancy Laurent Lessard, and Minister of International Relations and Minister responsible for La Francophonie Monique Gagnon-Tremblay have announced that the 27th edition of Festival international de cinéma Vues d’Afrique, to be held April 28 to May 8, 2011, in Montréal, will receive $110,000 in government funding.
According to Minister St-Pierre, this festival is “[…] a very important event for Québec film buffs to discover. Vues d’Afrique is the biggest film festival of its type outside of Africa and an invaluable tool for understanding and appreciating everything cultural diversity has to offer.”
Vues d’Afrique describes itself as a source of information and a local and international distribution network for cultural productions, particularly audiovisual productions on all current and emerging platforms, from African and Creole countries and their diasporas.
For the complete program, see the festival website.
Institut québécois des hautes études internationales (HEI), in collaboration with Centre de la Francophonie des Amériques (CFA), will host a 2nd edition of La Francophonie des Amériques summer university. The session will be held from May 29 to June 4, 2011, at Université Laval in Québec City, Canada. Its theme will be the diversity of la Francophonie in the Americas: migrations, standards and institutions, cultural representations.
The course material will take a multidisciplinary approach, including political science, sociology, comparative law, history, human geography, and literature in order to examine the many dimensions of the sociocultural reality of La Francophonie in the Americas. A variety of subjects will be covered, including francophone migration in Latin America, aboriginals and francophones, the Caribbean and its various francophone cultures, Acadian identity, and the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.
Lecturers will include Chair of the HEI Board of Directors and UNESCO Special Envoy for Haiti Michaëlle Jean, University of Ottawa Faculty of Law professor Benoît Pelletier, President of the Centre de la francophonie des Amériques Jean-Louis Roy, and General Secretary of the International Federation of Coalitions for Cultural Diversity (IFCCD) and Director General of the Coalition for Cultural Diversity (CDC) Charles Vallerand.
For information of registering for the international summer university, visit Université Laval’s Hautes études internationales website.
The annual Cultural Policy Research Award (CPRA) is open for applications. With the Award, the European Cultural Foundation (ECF), the Riksbankens Jubileumsfond (RJ), and the European Network of Cultural Administration Training Centres (ENCATC) aim to encourage and enable cultural policy researchers to undertake comparative and cross-cultural applied research. The award is devoted to research projects that shed light on contemporary European cultural issues and challenges. The CPRA prize is €10,000 awarded to cultural policy researchers up to age 35 from wider Europe. Nominees are selected by an international jury of eminent European cultural policy researchers.
The European Festivals Research Project (EFRP) and Festival Borštnikovo srečanje (the Maribor Theatre Festival) invite proposals for presentations at the EFRP research workshop “Artistic Festivals and Continuously Operating Cultural Organizations” to be held in Maribor, Slovenia October 21–23, 2011.
The organizers aim to select around 14 presentations to be featured in the workshop. Research approaches and forms can vary, including case studies and comparisons, typological analysis of relationships, examinations of specific aspects of competition, interdependence and synergy. Various points of view are welcome, including those of artists, programmers and producers, funders, critics, and audiences, and issues can include programming and production, logistics, marketing and communication, audience development, educational activities, media coverage, sponsorship, and cultural policy.
The deadline for submissions is April 15, 2011. For more information on the application process, visit the European Festival Association website.
As reported in the February 21 edition of the Newsletter, hearings of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage were held on January 31 and February 7. Speakers included Peter Van Loan, Minister of International Trade and Charles Vallerand, Executive Director of the Coalition for Cultural Diversity. A report was recently released on these hearings. Seeking, in part, to ensure that the Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions is respected during negotiations between Canada and the European Union for a Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), the Committee summarizes and emphasizes a number of points made by witnesses and makes five recommendations, including the following:
“The Committee calls on the Government of Canada to fully respect cultural diversity treaties and calls on the Government to reaffirm its commitment to fully uphold UNESCO obligations while negotiating any present or future trade agreements.”
The report, available in French and English, is available on the website of the Standing Committee on Canadian Heritage.
Finland’s Ministry of Education and Culture recently published a report entitled Culture in development cooperation: cultural sectors in sustainable development policy.
The document prepared by an unofficial working group of the Ministry of Education and Culture and the Ministry for Foreign Affairs suggests elements to be used as content for the theme of culture and development. It provides opinions and objectives on the role and potential of culture in development cooperation in general and more specifically from the perspective of capitalizing on the strengths and resources of the Finnish cultural sector.
The document also discusses the European Union’s development policy and investments from the perspective of culture and the foci of Finland’s contribution to international organizations, particularly UNESCO and WIPO. The increasing reach of globalization and multiculturalism is creating unprecedented opportunities for strengthening intercultural exchange, as well as new challenges for preserving cultural diversity, especially between rich and poor countries. The UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions plays a crucial role in this context.
The document, available in English and Finnish, is available on the website of Finland’s Ministry of Education and Culture.
On the heels of UNESCO’s March 18 announcement of the launch of the 2nd call for projects eligible for funding by the International Fund for Cultural Diversity (IFCD), the International Federation of Coalitions for Cultural Diversity (IFCCD) is offering its members technical support in preparing funding applications through six volunteer experts from Canada, Burkina-Faso, Peru, Paraguay, and Tunisia. The IFCCD will act as a bridge between IFCCD members seeking this free technical assistance and an assigned expert.
For more information on this technical assistance, please visit the website of the Coalition for Cultural Diversity.
To mark the 50th anniversary of its founding, Mexico’s Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo (UAEH) will host the International Image Festival 2011 May 19–29. The event will draw a variety of artists, journalists, publicists, academics, and university scholars to Pachuca to explore the city’s image. It will be an opportunity to promote and share local artistic creativity, graphic journalism, technology, and communication and spur discussion on the esthetics, meaning, and value or images in the diversity of the expression and application of these crafts.
The festival will also include a Photography and Digital Fine Art International Contest. The contest’s main theme is the natural environment and, therefore, the shared responsibility and global challenge of achieving sustainable development. It is about showing the relevance and strength of images in the appreciation and preservation of our natural surroundings through artistic creation, journalist denunciation, advertising, and technological innovation in the fields of photography and digital fine art.
For more information on this festival, visit the Universidad Autónoma del Estado de Hidalgo website.
Under the honorary presidency of Marie Laberge, Salon international du livre de Québec will be held April 13–17. Guests of honor for this edition will include Hélène Harbec, Yvon Brochu, Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt, Alain Mabanckou, and Kim Thúy. Activities will include meetings with authors, live events, round table discussions, and conversations between authors like Dany Laferrière and Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt.
The event will also include Québec la MUSE, which will bring together poets from different backgrounds and will feature a variety of forms of cultural expression like literature, theater, music, and poetry.
For the full program, visit the website of the Salon international du livre de Québec.
The 9th edition of DiverCiné will be held April 13–16 in Ottawa, Canada. This film festival is organized jointly by the Embassy of France in Canada and the Department of Canadian Heritage, in partnership with Library and Archives Canada and the Canadian Film Institute (CFI). It is a unique opportunity for Canadians to discover the works of filmmakers from various countries of La Francophonie, which have limited screening in Canada.
CFI's mandate is to encourage and promote the production, diffusion, study, appreciation, and use of moving images for cultural and educational purposes in Canada and abroad. To this end, it organizes ongoing public film programming, distributes a small collection of films, and is involved in the publication of books and monographs on various aspects of Canadian cinema.
For the full event program, visit the website of the Canadian Film Institute.
The 4th edition of the Bayimba International Festival of the Arts will be held September 16–18, 2011. The organizing team invites artists of all disciplines to express their interest in joining for the 2011 Festival edition.
Applications from live bands, theater companies, traditional and modern dance groups, poets, storytellers, authors, filmmakers, fashion designers, visual artists, DJs, and MCs will be considered.
A modest performance fee will be offered to participating artists. For artists from outside Uganda modest accommodation, local transport, and a per diem will be provided. Artists from outside Uganda are encouraged to seek support to cover travel, visa, and insurance expenses; those selected will receive a formal invitation so as to apply for such support.
Artists from outside Uganda are requested to submit their application by April 30, 2011, while the application deadline for Ugandan artists is May 31, 2011.
For more information, visit the ArtsinAfrica website.
The traveling exhibition on Fado organized by the Delegation of Portugal to UNESCO is open to visitors until April 15 at the UNESCO headquarters in Paris. The exhibition presents the history of Fado from its birth in 19th century Lisbon to the present day using posters, photographs, sheet music, musical instruments, show costumes and accessories, and so on, to illustrate the path to recognition of Lisbon’s urban song tradition.
Fado is a Portuguese musical genre characterized by song with melancholic themes accompanied by stringed instruments.
The European Union (EU) is in the process of approving a major program for promoting Tanzanian cultures as part of its efforts to strengthen partnership between Europe and Tanzania.
The EU head of Delegation to Tanzania Ambassador Tim Clarke has announced that the EU is preparing to approve a major program aimed at supporting Tanzanian institutions that promote local cultures. The Ambassador was taking part in the inauguration of the European Union National Institutes for Culture (EUNIC) in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania.
EUNIC is a network of European cultural institutes from EU member states working actively in EU partner countries across the world. EUNIC members work in over 150 countries with over 2,000 branches. They work in every cultural field including the arts, languages, youth, education, science, intercultural dialogue, and development. Mr. Clarke explained that the program would be divided into two parts: supporting Tanzanian entrepreneurs in the arts, music, dance, fashion, and literature; and supporting the conservation and preservation of Tanzanian cultural heritage.