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22/23.09.2015 : Forum d’Avignon Ruhr – Essen



22 and 23 september - ESSEN

Relive the Forum d'Avignon Ruhr 2015


  • Tuesday, 22 September 2015, 7:00 pm

N.I.C.E. Award, Gallery Alte Mitte, Essen

Under the lead of the european centre for creative economy (ecce) the “Network for Innovations in Culture and Creativity in Europe” (N.I.C.E.) was founded in 2013 and aims at promoting innovation with cultural and creative industries.

The N.I.C.E. exhibition will present 15 innovative projects from across Europe. The winner will be given the N.I.C.E. award by Garrelt Duin, Minister for Economic Affairs for the State of North Rhine-Westphalia, on 23 September 2015..

The evening before, on September 22, all shortlist nominees, who are chosen by an international Jury under the lead of Charles Landry, are presented at the N.I.C.E. exhibition.

The Forum d’Avignon was shortlisted for the N.I.C.E. Award 2015 : discover its Data Ethical Culture Observatory project.

  • Wednesday, 23 September 2015, 10.00 am – 5 :00 pm at the GOP Variety Theatre

Discover the detailed conference programme

The topic :

We live in an increasingly digitalised world. Digital content, applications and structures permeate more and more aspects of everyday life and transform society in a profound way and at a high speed.

And yet we are still at the beginning of the digital revolution: While we had the last seven years to familiarize ourselves with our smartphones, we will need to accustom ourselves to the thought that tomorrow intelligent computers will drive our cars. New ways of thinking and cultures of action, new values and evaluation systems have emerged through the application of digital media and technologies. Data on a massive scale - big data - form the basis of these systems and bring forth new ones, shift industry boundaries and redefine markets and perspectives.

The digital developments are also, and above all, a cultural challenge for society as a whole. The individual, anonymous and transparent at the same time, with their digital "data track" in the flood of data flows becomes an economic commodity, while politics and economics struggle for supremacy in definition and design.

It is especially culture, just where the cultural and creative industries unfold in music, film and literature, advertising, art and architecture, that affects these upheavals with all their opportunities and risks, but which at the same time is also a driver of the digital revolution. Digital offers and their usage in the millions by consumers of culture worldwide - whether with an art app in the museum, with books on the ebook or with music and movies on the smartphone, - decisively move the web and the business and application models in the highly commercialised culture areas or the creative economy.

And therefore it is precisely the culture and creative industries, which in their digital expression are not only globally successful, but also put people in the foreground, promote identity and connect cultures – predestined to participate in the shaping of the digital future with vision and pragmatism, and to even take a lead.

2015 is the year in which digitalisation is a new priority for cultural policy in Europe: the European Commission, which has been newly elected in autumn 2014, declares culture as a field of action in the context of the digital single market initiative. The network of the Forum d'Avignon is working on a "preliminary declaration of digital human rights"1 as a basis for European legislation. Already in 2014 the German Government started working on a digital agenda, which also includes culture and creative industries and in the "Cultural Funding Act" of North Rhine-Westphalia explicitly mentions a promotion of "interdisciplinary projects and the production and presentation of digital art forms"2 as well as the digitalisation of analogous culture.

The debate in culture on digitalisation and big data is only in its infancy. It is characterised by little experience, meagre exchange and cooperation, a lack of a differentiated debate about opportunities, risks and prospects, but also by worries about the future.

The Forum d'Avignon Ruhr 2015 wants to be a think tank to shed light on the opportunities and risks of the digital revolution for culture and to hold critical discussions with thinkers, movers and shakers, and decision makers from culture, politics and economy in Europe. With selected best practice initiatives, incentives and discussions about economic principles and ethical requirements, the Forum d'Avignon Ruhr intends to start fact-based debate and to advocate the relevance and crucial role of culture in the digital future.

About :

The Forum d’Avignon Ruhr is based on a French-German partnership between the think tank Forum d’Avignon and ecce. The aim of the cooperation is to culturally contribute to future-oriented policies by bringing together Europe’s business leaders, movers and shakers, from the economy, politics, media, science, and culture. The 4th edition will take place on 22 and 23 September 2015 in the city of Essen.

More information on the Forum d'Avignon Ruhr