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Evaluation of Cultural Policies and EU-Funded Programmes as Promoters of Cultural Diversity and Intercultural Dialogue in the Balkans/Southeast Europe (SEE)

The two-year project entitled Evaluation of Cultural Policies and EU-Funded Programmes as Promoters of Cultural Diversity and Intercultural Dialogue in the Balkans/Southeast Europe (SEE) aimed to evaluate the impact of national and local cultural policies and EU funded programmes in the countries of the Western Balkans in promoting cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue as a part of the EU integration process. The project is implemented in partnership with Österreichische kulturdokumentation, Internationales archiv für kulturanalysen, Vienna, Austria and Udruženje građana Akcija, Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina.

One can say that some of the Balkan countries have started to recognise that cultural diversity has become a starting point for the development and organisation of cultural relations, influencing and even defining the social positions of different groups and individuals. Intercultural dialogue, on the other hand, acknowledges the communication and the general interaction between different cultures as well as all types of exchanges taking place between them. The different interpretations or intonations do not prevent the basic comprehension of the term 'interculturalism' as a set of developed concepts and policies concerning the understanding and managing of cultural diversities. It is therefore necessary to analyse and discuss the dynamic change of cultural identities, not only globally but also in the context of cultural variety and cultural diversities which need to be managed in an overall democratic and modernising context.

The evaluation report tries to evaluate the cultural policies and EU-funded programmes in the countries of the Western Balkans which promote cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue as part of the EU integration process, as well as to give some positive examples from the EU in this regard. In this respect, the goal of the Evaluation Report is to enhance the regional impact of cultural policies and programs on promoting cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue in five countries of the Balkans/SEE (Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Macedonia, Montenegro and Serbia) and to present EU practices. The results of this research could serve as a resource of practical knowledge and experiences within the cultural sector in the process of re-thinking cultural policies and developing and enhancing the internal capacities of the cultural sector in the field of cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue in the Balkan/SEE countries.

The intention of the project partners was to produce an evaluation report which ultimately would produce recommendations for a more coordinated and EU-oriented policy making approach in the field of culture in the region as well as some recommendations for EU policy makers in the field of culture. The project can be seen as both a process and an output. Definitely, one of the products that came out of this particular project is the final report. The project`s web knowledge portal entitled kulturlogue.org/ explores the possibilities and capacities through which the impact of cultural policies on promoting cultural diversity and intercultural dialogue can be enhanced via a more systematic and comprehensive analysis and sharing of the existing data on cultural policies and programmes. The provided knowledge includes texts, analyses and evaluations on the impact of cultural policies and programmes on diversity and dialogue.

The project is financially supported by the EU Community Programme Culture 2007-2013, the Ministry of Culture of Macedonia, Open Society Foundation - Macedonia, and the Swiss Cultural Program for Western Balkan.

All inquiries should be sent to Lea Linin at lea@multimedia.org.mk

More information can be obtained from Violeta Simjanovska, Executive manager, PAC MULTIMEDIA, DTC MAVROVKA, lamela C 1/1, 1000 Skopje, Macedonia; tel./fax: + 389 23 111 570; www.multimedia.org.mk, kulturlogue.org/