Why and How are you working with Culture?
Culture has its intrinsic value. Beyond that, we have the social, economic value and impact on well-being. We all live and breathe culture. Culture is the invisible language that separates and unites people. Culture speaks to her heart and feelings. For reaching people in meaningful ways, what can be better, and more important, than culture? There are many aspects of culture to think of, thus also many ways of engaging through culture as a country, region or entity.
Cultural Diplomacy is a buzzword today. But what is it in reality, and what does it actually mean? The answers vary, depending on whom you are asking; there is no universal agreement. Does one’s engagement with culture in external relations correspond to Cultural Diplomacy, or maybe better to another term? What about Cultural Relations, Culture in International Relations, Cultural Cooperation, Capacity Building etc? What does one want to achieve, with what measures? One can work in many ways related to culture. How one chooses to work is of course related to many internal and external factors.
Cultural Strategy can be an umbrella for actions taken related to culture both in internal and external dimensions. Cultural strategy does not necessarily have a branding objective but can simply be about creating a strategy on how one chooses to engage through and with culture. It can be the plan of a city, a region or a country on how to invest in culture, for whom, why etc. Cultural Strategy can also be a way for a company to connect more profoundly with its target group from an anthropological angle, aiming to understand the human being, cultures, traditions, values, assumptions, the depths that have made us to who we are. This kind of cultural strategy creates cultural expressions that your target group needs in order to sustain who they are, or who they want to be. Cultural Strategy of course also helps you to position yourself. It can present objectives as social cohesion, cross sector collaboration, economic growth and innovation.
Here are some different projects we have created and implemented. They vary in types of projects in terms of Cultural Diplomacy, Cultural Relations, Culture as conflict prevention and peace building, the arts as bridge building and community communication. Three of the projects are parts of the “neighbourhood dialogue programme” that in collaboration with different artists had objectives of establishing communication platforms for different communities in one area in Brussels.