The annual cultural policy convention Folk och Kultur will be held for the sixth time this year from 8-11 February in Eskilstuna.
It is the fourth time in a row that Nordic Culture Fund participates in the conference. In an interview with Folk och Kultur, Benny Marcel, the Fund’s director, explains that the Fund's priority through the years has been to actively participate in the conference to strengthen and keep up the momentum for an ongoing debate on the development of cultural policy:
"Folk och Kultur has probably never been more relevant than in the times we live in now. Questions such as why we need cultural policy and how we can safeguard the principles of free culture and democracy through increased cooperation must be constantly discussed. Hopefully, Folk och Kultur can be the springboard and inspiration for the exchange of knowledge and experience that is so necessary for all of us working in the field of arts and cultural policy."
This year, the Fund will moderate two seminars with Swedish political party leaders, Nooshi Dadgostar from the Left Party and Per Bolund from the Green Party, respectively. Both talks will focus on artwork as a springboard for further discussion on the importance of art for the community and for the direction in which the community is developing.
The Fund will also participate in several panel discussions and conversations: A conversation with Cilla Benkö, CEO of Swedish Radio, on the role of Swedish radio in a democratic society and in a changed security policy situation; the panel discussion ‘Offentlig och privat finansiering i skön förening (?) - exempel från Norge’ on public and private financing of a Norwegian association; the debate 'Scenkonstens framtida ledare’ on the situation of and requirements for the future leaders of the performing arts; and the conversation 'Scenkonsten - steget ahead inom kompetensutveckling och karriärväxling' focusing on the new progressive labour market measures that the performing arts industry has implemented to ensure flexibility at the work and competence development of performing artists.
Benny Marcel links the Fund’s presence in the debates and conversations at the conference to its ability to represent a broader Nordic perspective. Cultural cooperation between the Nordic countries has an essential potential for strengthening culture and generating new knowledge and development, he says:
"Earlier in history there was a clear exchange of ideas, social debate and cultural trends between the Nordic countries [...] Could we imagine something similar happening today? Nordic co-operation has probably never been more important than it is today. Let's make the most of it and help set the agenda for what we can do together in Eskilstuna during Folk och Kultur."
You can read the full interview with Benny Marcel in Swedish here.
You can find the entire programme for the conference on Folk och Kultur’s website.