Europa Nostra
#9 - 5 June 2020
Dear Colleagues & Friends,
On 27 May, the European Commission revealed the historic Next Generation EU, a €750 billion recovery instrument to repair damage from the crisis and prepare a better future for the next generation, which duly includes the wider world of culture. In addition, targeted reinforcements bring the long-term EU budget for 2021-2027 to €1.85 trillion. In front of the European Parliament, EC President Ursula von der Leyen presented the impressive support measures aimed at addressing the challenges of our generation - the just, green and digital transitions of our society and economy, which have become even more urgent and important in the light of the current crisis.
As stated in the Europe Day Manifesto “Cultural Heritage: a powerful catalyst for the future of Europe” launched by the European Heritage Alliance, culture and cultural heritage have the potential to make a significant contribution to Europe’s socio-economic recovery in the aftermath of the pandemic, and this in many ways.

Our heritage provides meaning and necessary tools and resources for Europe’s green and inclusive recovery. On this special World Environment Day, let us recall that cultural heritage is key to achieving the ambitious goals of the European Green Deal (EGD). Let us preserve our heritage in such a way that we also act #ForNature and for our planet.
On this occasion we are proud to share with you “Time for Nature”, a short video produced by the Thessaloniki branch of our country representation in Greece, Elliniki Etairia - Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage. This inspiring video conveys a strong message of hope and solidarity for our planet and also launches a call to action: “Nature warns us. It is time to act, all together, the state and civil society. To protect the nature that protects us".
As we celebrate the 250th anniversary of the birth of Ludwig van Beethoven, this year’s World Environment Day also coincides with the Beethoven Pastoral Day, communicating the relation between Art & Nature as embodied in Beethoven’s 6th Symphony, with many events around the world and a live stream at 6 pm CET with the participation of 250 artists from all over the world.
The current global challenges are indeed offering us opportunities to rethink our way of life and “design a new Europe, more equal, greener, more digital, and ready to face the future”, as stated by the President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, in his recent speech on the State of the Environment in Europe. In response to these challenges, as previously announced, together with ICOMOS, and the Climate Heritage Network, Europa Nostra is currently developing the “European Heritage Green Paper” to address this key topic and demonstrate the potential of cultural heritage to advance Europe’s green transformation.
Let us also recall that cultural heritage has the power to boost communities’ resilience by connecting people to places, thus fostering a sense of belonging as well as enhancing mutual understanding and respect. We wish to express our solidarity with peaceful citizens’ protests in the USA and elsewhere in the world strongly condemning racism and any other form of injustice or discrimination. We have therefore joined the #BlackOutTuesday social media campaign on 2 June and reaffirmed our commitment to core values expressed in Art. 2 of the Treaty on the European Union, in the Universal Declaration and the European Convention of Human Rights, such as respect for human dignity, tolerance, freedom and equality for all.
It is indeed our individual and collective duty and responsibility to address racism and injustice by promoting the achievements and amplifying the voices of communities around the world. Last 18 May, the heritage world celebrated International Museum Day on the theme of “Museums for Equality: Diversity and Inclusion”. The cultural heritage world indeed plays a key role in promoting diversity and contributing to social inclusion and fight against any form of discrimination.
For this and many other reasons, the cultural and creative world, including cultural heritage, ought to be adequately supported by the European Union, both in terms of policy and funding. In the coming weeks, we shall reach out to EC President Ursula von der Leyen and her team, as well as to the European Parliament, with concrete and constructive ideas and proposals for due investments in cultural heritage as part of the ambitious plan for a #NextGenerationEU.
We wish you an inspiring and enriching journey through our Digital Agora and related online platform! Please, share your contributions for inclusion in our next editions with Manon Richard (
On behalf of the Europa Nostra Agora Team,
Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović
Secretary General
Beethoven Pastoral Project - On the occasion of the UN World Environment Day on 5 Junethe Beethoven Pastoral Day will be celebrated as an online event live from Beethoven’s birthplace, the Beethoven-Haus in Bonn, Germany. The live stream event will start at 18:00 CET and will include:
  • Live interviews with violinist Daniel Hope, conductor Dirk Kaftan and Patricia Espinosa from UN Climate Change
  • World premiere of "Sound of Nature", the official movie about the Beethoven Pastoral Project by DW
  • Live music and statements in the spirit of Beethoven's Sixth Symphony, the "Pastoral" by project participants from around the world
  • Exhibition from Berlin-based Futurium: musicians of the Junge Deutsche Philharmonie perform the Pastoral
Natura 2000 - On 2 June 2020, the European Commission has announced the finalists for the 2020 European Natura 2000 Award. The 27 finalists from 15 countries were selected in five categories – Conservation, Socio-Economic Benefits, Communication, Reconciling Interests/Perceptions, and Cross-Border Cooperation and Networking. They will now be assessed by an independent jury and everyone is invited to vote for their favourite finalist to win the European Citizens’ Award. The aim of the Natura 2000 network is to ensure the long-term survival of Europe’s most valuable and threatened species and habitats. Well-functioning ecosystems in Natura 2000 provide many services that benefit human health, society and the economy estimated at EUR 200 to EUR 300 billion per year.
Lithuania - The Lithuanian Castles and Manors Association released a new video showcasing the beauty of nature, historical castles and manors in the frame of the project “Let’s Explore Lithuanian Manors”. Everyone can take a closer look, learn more about cultural heritage sites, visit the manors and experience their unique atmosphere. The changing views of castles and manors, their surroundings and the nature filled with life will take you into a mesmerising fairy tale and invite you to become one of its characters. The Liubavas Manor Watermill Museum received a European Heritage Award / Europa Nostra Award in 2012 in the category of Conservation.
Croatia - The Croatian National Tourist Board features information and audio-visual material about Croatia’s UNESCO World Heritage Sites, Intangible Cultural Heritage items, as well as this year’s European Capital of Culture Rijeka. It also featured inspiring legends and stories that have been kept alive by skilful and interesting storytellers. We invite you to discover more about the Diocletian Palace and Medieval Split, the Historical Core of Trogir, the lacemaking tradition, as well as the art of dry stone walling.
Belgium: Singing Brussels Celebration - BOZAR is inviting all citizens across Europe and beyond to take part in the “Live, Love, Sing”. On 7 June at 20:05 CET, listen to the song “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles either on the radio (La Première, Musiq’3, Classic21, Pure, VivaCité, BRF1, BRF2, Radio1, Radio2, MNM, StuBru, Klara and Bruzz) or on Spotify or Youtube. When the music starts playing, go to your window or onto your doorstep and sing for/with your neighbours. Film yourself and send your video via this page (upload link available on June 7). Be creative, performances will be pieced together into a large virtual choir in a video that can then be shared on social media.
#EuropeanChats - The European Movement International has launched a new series of Facebook chats featuring members of the EMI network from across Europe. #EuropeanChats bring together European citizens for informal discussions on different issues surrounding the COVID-19 crisis from their national perspectives, e.g. divergent national responses, how to sustain European cohesion and solidarity, the role of civil society in a public health crisis, and the potential lasting socioeconomic impact of the virus. You can replay the first two editions of the #EuropeanChats on the EMI Facebook page.
#EuropeAtHome - This project by Faro – European Capital of Culture 2027 Candidate City aims to bridge different European cities through an artistic perspective, which highlights this particular time in our history that is being lived “at home”. Authors and photographers have captured around 20 cities across Europe during the confinement time. All citizens across Europe and beyond are also invited to share their experience and vision by posting their photos and videos on their social media channels using the hashtag #EuropeAtHome. Publications are then gathered on this webpage. 
#PassTheMic - ONE, the global movement campaigning to end extreme poverty and preventable disease by 2030, has launched the social media initiative #PassTheMic. Aiming to fight coronavirus misinformation, it allows citizens across the world to hear directly from the experts and frontline workers. Each day, celebrities including Julia Roberts, Danai Gurira, and Hugh Jackman have handed their social media channels over to medical experts like Dr. Anthony Fauci, frontline workers like Dr. Tsion Firew of Columbia University, and policy experts like Nigeria’s former finance minister Ngozi Okonjo Iweala. Read more and watch videos here.
Paper Monuments social media challenge - On the occasion of the International Day for Monuments and Sites, the UNESCO Chair in cooperation with the ERA Chair on Digital Cultural Heritage at the Cyprus University of Technology and the Perrevia Network in Greece launched a Panhellenic social media campaign to promote cultural heritage in the current COVID-19 period. Children are encouraged to assemble and colour their own paper models of the medieval Kolossi Castle and/or the UNESCO World Heritage site of Asinou Church. Children (and their parents!) are invited to take photographs of their creations and submit them on the Shared Memory Facebook page to have a chance at winning one of the prizes awarded to the most creative paper monuments. Deadline: 31 July 2020.
#Ask2Curators, Museo Egizio - Discover many interesting stories about ancient Egypt through the new online initiative of Museo Egizio in Turin, Italy! Every Monday Museo Egizio is inviting you to follow a facebook live discussion hosted each time by two museum curators. These museum experts, usually working behind the scenes to design the museum exhibitions, are through this initiative given the floor to offer their insights. On Monday 8 June at 18:00 CET, the second episode will be aired with the curators Beppe Moiso and Tommaso Montonati who will answer live questions about the history of the Egyptian Museum. For this week’s topics submit your questions here and #Ask2Curators your curiosities regarding random artefact discoveries, museum purchases, dangerous trips for the recovery of antiquity and intense field research, activities that led to the creation of one of the most important collections of Egyptian artefacts in the world. If you missed the first episode on the different languages and writing systems used in ancient Egypt you can see it here. Follow Museo Egizio on social media (Twitter, Facebook, Instagram) and stay up to date on their digital initiatives.
IMPORTANT: Do not forget to join & contribute to our conversation on social media with the hashtag #EuropaNostraAgora on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook! We also invite you to follow the just-launched Twitter account of the European Heritage Alliance!
“Stay at Home Days” - KUMID (Friends of Cultural Heritage - FOCUH), a member organisation of Europa Nostra based in Turkey, has organised online Webinars and e-learning courses with the voluntary and valuable contributions of its members to protect cultural assets, to do research, to establish dialogue, and to maintain a sense of protection in the society. The recordings of the webinars and online courses are available on the organisation’s YouTube channel.
Culture From Home - The fourth edition of Europeana’s Culture From Home webinar series will bring together experts in cultural heritage and education on 11 June at 10:00 CET. Susan Hazan, co-chair of Europeana Communicators, will moderate the discussion with Isabel Crespo, Manager of the Europeana Education community, Emma Abbate, a teacher and teachers’ trainer, and Anke von Heyl, art historian, museum educator, and specialist for participation in social media. The webinar will end with a ‘Tana Libera Tutti’ session, in which the floor is opened to all participants - take the opportunity to discuss your activities and challenges with colleagues from all across Europe. The formal webinar will be recorded and made available online. Register here.
ICA Training Programme - The International Council on Archives offers online courses available through its Learning Platform. Three courses are currently available:
  • Introduction to Records Management: intended for anyone who needs to learn the basic requirements for managing records in government, business or not-for-profit organisations to meet legal obligations and help protect the rights and entitlements of citizens, employees and stakeholders
  • Understanding and Using the Universal Declaration on Archives: this course is about the Universal Declaration on Archives, the story of how it came into being, what it is all about (including an introduction to the principles and concepts of archives and records management) and how it can be used for advocacy and evaluation work.
  • Organising Family Archives: designed to provide simple practical guidance on looking after these precious family artefacts.
Milan Digital Week - From 26 to 29 May the Resonances III DATAMI Joint Research Centre (JRC), flagship initiative of the European Commission, featured as part of the Milan Digital Week (MDW) programme. This initiative by the Municipality of Milan is devoted to foster Digital Transformation and, in general, to promote the image and the economy of the city which has a world reputation as the centre of Design, Fashion and the Arts. You can replay the DATAMI Webinar with focus on “Method”, “Communication”, and “Tinkering and Industriousness".
Interpret Europe web conference: “Fostering heritage communities” - Following the conference, which took place online on 8-11 May and gathered 166 attendees from 36 countries, Interpret Europe has produced a publication compiling most useful tips and lessons learnt from organising an online conference. The brochure intends to offer support to organisations that have to turn their physical events into online conferences. It provides a summary of recommendations and tackles issues related to, among others, technological challenges, communication, team management, budget and attendees satisfaction.
Hispania Nostra and bell-ringers advocate jointly for manual bell-ringing to be included in the UNESCO Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. Manual bell-ringing is an ancient practice that in Spain is at risk of disappearing. Hispania Nostra, Campaners d'Albaida and MitMac (the International Museum of Manual Bell- Ringing in the Valencian town of Albaida), have launched a new website to raise awareness on the value and importance of this millenary tradition. The ambitious objective of this advocacy and awareness-raising campaign is for manual bell-ringing to be declared as Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity, and for a World Day dedicated to manual bell-ringing to be declared. ‘Bell-ringing is a common heritage of many different countries in all continents. (...) This newly-launched website will serve to promote the preservation of and the further development of the musical language of the bells.’, said the promoters of the initiative. Visit the website, have a look at the interactive Map and explore bells and bell-ringing in Europe and the world! 
EU Council Conclusions on risk management in cultural heritage adopted. On 26 May 2020, the Council of the EU adopted its conclusions on risk management in the area of cultural heritage. The Conclusions recall the need to protect cultural heritage from various types of risks (natural hazards, climate change and man-made disasters), and recognise that crises such as the current COVID-19 pandemic have important negative impacts on the heritage world. The document puts forward recommendations for both Member States and the European Commission, and stresses the need to enhance the role of authorities, cultural institutions, cultural property owners, as well as citizens and civil society in heritage risk management, as well as the need for close cooperation between them. Read Press Release here. Read the complete document here.
Members of the CULT Committee of the European Parliament express disappointment with cuts to culture, education and youth programmes in the Commission’s proposed EU budget 2021-2027. In reaction to the revised Commission proposal for the 2021-2027 budget for the Erasmus+, Creative Europe and European Solidarity Corps programmes presented on May 27, CULT Committee Chair, Sabine Verheyen, Erasmus+ Rapporteur, Milan Zver, Creative Europe Rapporteur, Massimilano Smeriglio and European Solidarity Corps Rapporteur, Michaela Šojdrová issued a statement stressing that ‘The specific figures for the education, culture and youth programmes are deeply disappointing and simply not in line with the statement by the Commission President on the importance of future generations, along with education and culture’. In their statement, MEPs recall that ‘The Covid-19 pandemic has also ravaged the cultural and creative and media sectors across Europe, but the proposal - a decrease compared to the 2018 proposal - ignores this impact completely’. Read the full statement here.
Culture Action Europe calls for upholding culture in the EU multi-annual budget. Reacting to the revised Multiannual Financial Framework 2021-2027 proposal presented by the European Commission on 27 May, Culture Action Europe issued a statement calling for a much more ambitious financial envelope for the Creative Europe programme, and a central place for culture in the EU long-term recovery budget. In particular, Culture Action Europe calls for doubling the budget of Creative Europe to 2,6 billion euros, and for 7% of the Recovery Fund to be earmarked for culture. Read and endorse this statement here.
The Transport and Tourism Committee of the European Parliament met on 28 May, together with representatives of the European Commission, to exchange views on the Commission’s transport and tourism package published on 13 May. The discussion focused on four main fields, notably: rebooting tourism, financial difficulties, safety concerns and passenger rights. MEPs gave overall positive feedback on the Commission’s package; however, many insisted that more concrete actions and financial support ahead of the summer holidays are needed. Read the Press Release here. The debate is accessible online, here.
In April, the European Cultural Foundation based in Amsterdam (The Netherlands) launched the Culture of Solidarity Fund to support imaginative cultural initiatives that, in the midst of the global pandemic crisis reinforce European solidarity and the idea of Europe as a shared public space. Following a successful first round of applications, the second window will open on 22 June and will close on 14 July at 13:00 CET. Find more information on how to apply here.
The European Union Youth Orchestra (EUYO) and Ferrara Musica present the third edition of the Ferrara Chamber Academy, which will take place in September 2020 (either physically or virtually). The Academy focuses on chamber music and ensemble performance, and includes an interesting teaching element: professional Chamber Orchestra of Europe musicians teach, mentor and perform with European Union Youth Orchestra players who in turn teach, mentor and perform with young Italian musicians, all three groups living and working together in Ferrara. Young Italian musicians can apply to be offered the opportunity to perform in the Teatro Comunale Claudio Abbado di Ferrara, to be coached by EUYO musicians, and to attend rehearsals and concerts of the EUYO with guests of the Chamber Orchestra of Europe. Deadline: 28 June.
Erasmus+: European Youth Together 2020 - Building on the outcomes of the New Narrative for Europe and the European Youth Goals, this new call for proposals aims at supporting initiatives from at least five youth organisations from five different eligible Erasmus+ programme countries to share their ideas about the EU, encourage wider civic participation and help foster a sense of European citizenship. The initiative aims to bring together European youth from across Europe; East, West, North and South. For this year the thematic priorities are ‘Inclusive Societies’, ‘Information and Constructive Dialogue’ and ‘Sustainable and Green Europe’. Deadline: 28 July.
Hostwriter is offering funding in the form of grants to journalists based in Eastern and Southern Europe through the Agora Europe Journalism Grants Program. The current crisis is hitting journalism and poses an existential threat to freelance journalists and press freedom in Europe and around the world. By connecting international media professionals, providing training in "Cross-Border Journalism" and launching projects that shed light on unequal power dynamics within the field, Hostwriter powers the collaborative future of journalism that is as diverse as the societies it serves. The Agora Europe Journalism Grants Program will consist of two parts: Part I – Emergency Support Funding for Individual Journalists and Part II - Agora Europe Reporting Project Funds. Deadline: 22 June. 
The Singapore International Foundation (SIF) has launched Arts for Good Projects to help support arts practitioners and their arts-based initiatives and minimise the impact that the COVID-19 situation has on the arts and culture scene globally. The SIF’s Arts for Good Projects brings together artists and different sectors of society to collaborate on arts-based initiatives to enhance cross-cultural understanding and create social impact. Applications for ideas should demonstrate the power of the arts and culture to connect, support and uplift global communities. Deadline: 7 June.
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