Culture for the future

Creativity, Innovation and Dialogue for Inclusive Development

Special Event
Tuesday, June 18, 2019
14:00 to 15:30

Culture and development is on the agenda of the EU’s external cooperation for sustainable development. The European Commission and other organisations have been active in supporting cultural and creative industries to ensure they contribute to sustainable development. The European Commission is now reflecting on the future of its support to the cultural dimension of sustainable development. For this reason, it co-organises, on 16-17 June, a Colloquium “Culture for the Future” gathering around 500 cultural and creative professionals and policy-makers from the EU and partner countries in BOZAR, Brussels. This high-level panel will share the results of the Colloquium with the audience of the European Development Days and obtain feedback by development specialists and decision-makers.

Key points

  • Culture is not just decoration – it can play a vital role in promoting peace, social cohesion and development

  • Delivery on the ground is not matching the rhetoric – EU procedures make it hard to ensure that money earmarked for culture reaches the right people

  • For culture to flourish, the private sector needs to step up its funding and governments must create more enabling environments for artists

  • For the first time, the EU combined culture, fashion, business and sustainability in a two-day event in Brussels, culminating in the launch of a Manifesto on creative industries, as well as online knowledge-sharing platform CultureXchange


The session will highlight how culture plays a role in sustainable development and the fight against inequalities. Culture and creative industries are a critical economic sector, contribute to create jobs and innovation, while supporting peace and social cohesion, including in fragile contexts. Culture can help to boost social cohesion, address urbanisation problems, and empower youth, women and vulnerable groups. The topic needs to be addresses to ensure the broader audience of EDD 2019 hears about concrete ideas emerging from the gathering of culture and development specialists and to give feedback on those proposals.


The audience will learn about the results of the Colloquium “Culture for the Future” which will propose tangible actions on culture and development, notably a manifesto to boost investing in cultural and creative industries, a platform for exchange among professionals and a list of concrete projects. Participants will be able to give feedback on the proposals from the Colloquium and identify how those initiatives can be useful to reach the sustainable development objectives of their own projects and actions. 

Organised by


Etienne Minoungou
Rokia Traore
Jorge Carlos Fonseca
President of the Republic of Cabo Verde
The Republic of Cabo Verde
Sylvie Durán
Minister of Culture and Youth
Republic of Costa Rica
Aina Calvo Sastre
Spanish Agency for International Development Cooperation
Seydou Ouedraogo
FREE Afrik Institute
Stefano Manservisi
European Commission - DG for International Cooperation and Development