The Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe / La Voix du patrimoine culturel en Europe
EUROPA NOSTRA BRUSSELS ALERT May 2012
Dear Friends of Europe's Cultural Heritage,
Just before leaving for our Annual Congress 2012 in Lisbon, we are glad to send you the second issue of our "Europa Nostra Brussels Alert" which focuses on our numerous activities in Brussels (and in Berlin) and on the activity of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3.
We are particularly pleased to communicate the Europa Nostra position papers on 2 essential proposals of future EU programmes (2014-2020) with relevance for cultural and natural heritage:
- Creative Europe, the future EU programme dedicated to the cultural and creative sectors; and
- Horizon 2020, the future EU programme for Research and Innovation.
Do not hesitate to send us your views and input! Your feedback is of essential importance for our attempt to constantly improve the quality of our communication with members and other heritage stakeholders.
Last but not least, if you have not yet joined Europa Nostra, as a member or associate organisation, or as an individual member, please do not hesitate to do so! Every organisation and individual member matters. Together we will succeed in making the Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe clearly heard, better understood and truly listened to!
We are looking forward to seeing many of you at our forthcoming European Heritage Congress 2012
Sneška Quaedvlieg – Mihailović, Secretary General of Europa Nostra
Louise van Rijckevorsel, European Affairs, Europa Nostra Brussels Office
Almost one year after the launch of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3 in June 2011 in Amsterdam, the second plenary meeting of this informal European sectoral platform composed of 27 European or international networks active in the wider field of cultural heritage took place on 25 April 2012 in the Europa Nostra Brussels Office. 11 member organisations joined this meeting and adopted the first document jointly produced by the Alliance with the title: “Towards and EU Strategy for Cultural Heritage – a Case for Research”.
This document calls for a comprehensive and comparative study to be undertaken at European level and hopefully to be funded by the European Union, with the aim to bring clear evidence of the multiple benefits which cultural and natural heritage has for our society, environment and economy: not only in terms of the EU’s overall 2020 and the EU’s Sustainability Agenda, but also in terms of quality of life, sense of identity and belonging of Europe’s citizens. Such research-based evidence could foster the development of a true EU Heritage Agenda with an over-arching vision and integrated approach leading to a due recognition of the heritage dimension in all relevant EU policies.
This document has been transmitted to EU Commissioner Androulla Vassiliou, with a request for setting up a meeting between her and a small delegation of the European Heritage Alliance 3.3. to discuss the document produced, if possible before the Summer break.
The Alliance members also discussed the future EU programmes dedicated to the cultural and creative sectors (Creative Europe), and to Research and Innovation (Horizon 2020), as well as the future EU Cohesion Policy.
The meeting ended with a fruitful exchange of views with Petar Miladinov and Claire-Lyse Chambron, Policy Officers at the Unit “Culture Policy, Diversity and Intercultural Dialogue”, within the EC’s DG Education and Culture, who welcomed the creation and the goals of the Alliance and encouraged a close dialogue between the European Commission and the Alliance.
The Europa Nostra Board prepared the Europa Nostra position paper on Creative Europe, the future EU programme dedicated to the cultural and creative sectors proposed by the European Commission on 23 November 2011, which will run from 2014 till 2020.
The position paper welcomes and supports the Creative Europe proposal and the proposed overall budget but also strongly recommends that due reference be made to article 3.3 of the consolidated version of the Treaty on European Union which states that “[The Union] shall respect its rich cultural and linguistic diversity, and shall ensure that Europe’s cultural heritage is safeguarded and enhanced”.
Europa Nostra also suggests some specific proposals of amendments which aim to raise the profile of cultural heritage in the overall balance of different cultural and creative sectors covered by the Creative Europe Programme.
This position paper will be submitted to the Europa Nostra Council for its approval on 30 May 2012 in Lisbon but has already been presented to the Creative Europe rapporteur of the European Parliament, MEP Silvia Costa, as well as to various important stakeholders at the European Commission, the European Parliament (a.o. at the occasion of the Hearing on Creative Europe which took place on 26 April in the CULT Committee) and the Council (Education, Youth, Culture and Sport) of the European Union.
The Ministers of the Education, Youth, Culture and Sport Council of the European Union met on 10-11 May in Brussels. In public deliberation, the Council reached a partial general approach on the proposal for the regulation establishing the Creative Europe programme.
As this regulation is part of the Multiannual Financial Framework (2014 - 2020) currently under discussion, the partial general approach does not include the provisions with budgetary implications but this agreement constitutes a political mandate for the future EU Presidencies to engage in informal negotiations with the European Parliament with the aim of reaching overall agreement on the proposal early in 2013.
The press release of the meeting stresses that Member States generally welcomed the structure of the programme as proposed by the Commission, provided that the cultural part and MEDIA-related part will be treated as separate strands, each having its own priorities, measures and budget. They also endorsed its specific objectives, such as the promotion of the transnational circulation of cultural and creative works and cultural workers, as well as the focus on audience development and improving access to European cultural and creative works.
Europa Nostra is pleased that several Member States underlined that the intrinsic value of culture must be preserved and that the overall programme should be re-balanced towards a more non-profit, cultural dimension. Some considered that the Culture strand should only fund small scale, non-commercial projects. In addition, a number of Member States called for adjustments to the committee procedure in order to strike a balance between the required flexibility in the programme's implementation and the need to ensure the appropriate involvement of member states.
Commissioner Vassiliou underlined that it would not be fair to exclude from funding every profit-making cultural or creative organisation, since this would discourage them not only from seeking additional sources of financing but also from trying to be successful. Ministers were also invited to have an exchange of views on the new Cultural and Creative Sectors Facility proposed in the programme.
The Europa Nostra Board prepared the Europa Nostra position paper on Horizon 2020, the future EU Framework Programme for Research and Innovation 2014-2020 proposed by the European Commission on 30 November 2011.
Following the first Brussels Alert sent by Europa Nostra last February urging its members and contacts to sign an online petition pleading for the inclusion of cultural heritage in Horizon 2020, the Europa Nostra Board calls the European Parliament and the Council to ensure that the area of cultural and natural heritage research is duly included in the future programme, as it has been featured in all EU Research framework programmes since 1986.
Europa Nostra also suggests few specific proposals of amendments which aim to call for a clear reference to cultural heritage research in the proposed programme and specifically in the second priority of Horizon 2020, namely the industrial leadership, and in the third priority, namely the societal challenges – among the following objectives: (iii) Secure, clean and efficient energy; (iv) Smart, green and integrated transport; (v) Climate action, resource efficiency and raw materials and (vi) Inclusive, innovative and secure societies.
This position paper will be submitted to the Europa Nostra Council for its approval on 30 May 2012 in Lisbon but has already been presented to the Horizon 2020 rapporteur of the Culture and Education Committee (committee for opinion) of the European Parliament, MEP Emma Mcclarkin.
John Sell, Europa Nostra Executive Vice-President, was appointed as the Europa Nostra representative at the Advisory Board of the Research Joint Programming Initiative (JPI) “Cultural Heritage and Global Change: a new challenge for Europe”.
The JPI on Cultural Heritage was endorsed by the Competitiveness Council decision on 26 May 2010 with the aim to encourage Member States “to develop a common vision on how cooperation and coordination in the field of research at Union level can help to preserve cultural heritage in all its forms, ensuring its security and sustainable exploitation”, “to develop a common strategic research agenda”, “to prepare and implementation plan establishing priorities and timelines and specifying the action, instruments and resources required for its implementation” and “to set up a common management structure”.
Cultural Heritage, Climate Change and Security was one of the three themes in the first series of JPIs to be adopted by the Council of the European Union. 18 countries are currently participating in the JPI and 8 have joined as observers. The coordinator is the Italian Ministry for Cultural Heritage and Activities.
John Sell also represented Europa Nostra and the European Civil Society for Cultural Heritage at the Workshop on “Research Infrastructures for Cultural Heritage and Global Change” organised by the European Commissio’s DG for Research and Innovation, in collaboration with the Belgian Royal Institute for Cultural Heritage (KIK-IRPA) and the FP7 CHARISMA research infrastructures' project (Cultural Heritage Advanced Research Infrastructures: Synergy for a Multidisciplinary Approach to Conservation/Restoration), on 14 March in Brussels.
Europa Nostra Secretary General, Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, was invited as a speaker the Seminar on “European Policy and Cultural Heritage Conservation – Architectural Heritage and Energy Efficiency Searching for Solutions”, organised by MEP Cristina Gutierrez-Cortines , member of the Committee on Environment, Public Health and Food Safety and Vice-Chair of the Ars Civilis Foundation (member organisation of Europa Nostra), on 11 January at the European Parliament.
At this occasion, Europa Nostra expressed its support to the rationale and the main objectives of the proposed Energy Efficiency Directive but stressed the need to strike the right balance between two equally important objectives: energy saving and combating climate change on one side and on the other side, ensuring the safeguard of Europe’s cultural heritage (a policy objective and a public value which are recognised not only by national heritage protection legislations but also by the Lisbon Treaty, article 3.3).
Europa Nostra therefore supported the proposed amendments to the European Parliament which sought to recognize the special needs and special characteristics of historic buildings and ensembles within the scope of the proposed Directive and the related draft Report by EP’s ITRE Committee.
The Directive is now under discussion by the Council of the European Union.
On 8 and 9 December 2011, a large delegation of Europa Nostra Council members took part to the international congress "The Heritage of the City– Europe's Future, New Opportunities for Integrated Urban Development" organised by the German Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development in Berlin. The conference ended with a clear commitment to historical heritage as a cornerstone of integrated urban development in Europe. It emerged that government support and reliable partners were needed if this historical heritage was to be protected, maintained, preserved and developed. Moreover, there was agreement that the exchange of views and experience launched at the Congress had to be continued in order to actively work on reaching agreement between municipal authorities, heritage conservationists, representatives from the cultural sector and policymakers with the aim of strengthening the heritage of the European City.
The German Federal Ministry of Transport, Building and Urban Development therefore decided to launch a follow-up process of the Congress and invited Europa Nostra, as the Voice of civil society, to join the expert group to work on it. Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, EN Secretary General, attended the kick-off event of this follow-up process which took place on 26 March in Berlin.
We are pleased to announce the newly established partnership between EUROPA NOSTRA and VIVA EUROPA. This partnership was launched at the end of March in the presence of Europa Nostra’s President, Maestro Plácido Domingo, on the occasion of the founding gathering of the Europa Nostra President’s Circle in Valencia (Spain).
VIVA EUROPA is a pan-European cultural and communication initiative that includes the simultaneous projection on big screens of a live opera performance from Palau de les Arts Reina Sofía in Valencia, Spain. The opera broadcast can be followed in all the European cities that wish to join this initiative and it is for the general public to enjoy free of charge in public spaces (open air or auditorium/theatre). VIVA EUROPA since 2009, associated to European Years, offers a unique and enjoyable June evening of TOGETHERNESS across Europe.
EUROPA NOSTRA and VIVA EUROPA share the same goal: the celebration of Europe's unique cultural heritage, both tangible and intangible. EUROPA NOSTRA therefore looks forward to the VIVA EUROPA event in 2013: the European Year of Citizenship and also the year in which EURPA NOSTRA will be celebrating its Golden Jubilee.
EUROPA NOSTRA represents a rapidly growing citizens’ movement for the safeguarding of Europe’s cultural and natural heritage. Our pan-European network is composed of 250 member organisations (heritage associations and foundations with a combined membership of more than 5 million people), 150 associated organisations (governmental bodies, local authorities and corporations) and also 1500 individual members who directly support our mission.
• we form an important lobby for cultural heritage in Europe;
• we celebrate excellence through the European Heritage Awards organised by Europa Nostra in partnership with the European Union; and
• we campaign to save Europe’s endangered historic monuments, sites and cultural landscapes.
We are the Voice of Cultural Heritage in Europe.
Europa Nostra International Secretariat
Lange Voorhout 35, 2514 EC Den Haag, Netherlands T +31 70 302 40 50 F +31 70 361 78 65
E info [at] europanostra [dot] org
Europa Nostra Brussels Office
67 Rue de Trèves / Trierstraat, 1040 Brussels, Belgium T +32 2 400 77 02 F +32 2 234 30 09
E bxl [at] europanostra [dot] org
Brussels Alert is edited by Sneška Quaedvlieg – Mihailović and Louise van Rijckevorsel, European Affairs: +32 (0)2 400 77 02 or lvr[at]europanostra[dot]org
PHOTO: Flags in front of the European Commission building in Brussels
CC-BY Sébastien Bertrand