Culture is future »


« Enterprising culture » is the theme of the 8th International Meetings of the Forum d’Avignon in Bordeaux, France


A first edition in Bordeaux. Since their creation in 2007, the International meetings of the Forum d’Avignon have aimed at creating a dialogue, in an international perspective, between artists, CEOs, and politicians on creation-related topics. Built on the works of groups of experts and international studies, their goal is to make innovative proposals emerge. In 2016, for the first time, the 8th International meetings of the Forum will take place in Bordeaux, in the prestigious Grand Théâtre, on March 31st and April 1st.

« By locating culture within its economic and social context, the International meetings of the Forum d’Avignon are creating a passionate dialogue between creators, startupers, and decision-makers, Hervé Digne, President of the Forum d’Avignon, specifies. In an era which lacks bearings, the theme « Enterprising culture » reaffirms the singularity of culture and its role in the construction of identities in which everyone must be mobilized. »

« Helped by the experience of the Forum d’Avignon, we decided to highlight how determining an approach that puts culture at the heart of our local and national policies is. Hosting the International meetings in Bordeaux is a strong symbol to make stakeholders of the cultural, economic, and digital sectors work together. » recalls Alain Juppé, Mayor of Bordeaux and former Prime Minister. 


Great debates and proposals for the future. This 8th edition puts emphasis on the different ways of “Enterprising culture”. Culture is both what differentiates us and what brings us together. It must find a strategic position within public policies. These sectors which contribute in growth and employment rely on the key role of creators and cultural entrepreneurs, especially in the digital era. Finally, culture is, with tourism and entertainment industries, a driving force for the attractiveness of countries abroad. This is why this year the Forum d'Avignon plans to advance reflection and to come up with proposals on four fields: encouraging entrepreneurial models that facilitate the most the mobilization of creative talents, diversifying the terms of the funding for creation, ensuring the coherence of the European tax system on cultural matters, and finally, accompanying the promotion of an 'ethical use' of data.

Download the press kit



Wednesday, March 30

6-8 p.m. : Debate “ Cultural industries in good shape! ” with SCIENCES PO BORDEAUX 

On the university campus in PESSAC. Debate followed by a screening session of the film “ Perfect day “ by Fernando León de Aranoa.

Thursday, March 31

11 a.m. - 1 p.m.: Debate: “ Is our future taking shape with data - from data viewing to the design of the city of tomorrow? ” at the Museum of Decorative Arts and Design with the Digital Society Forum with French Tech Bordeaux


at the Grand Théâtre of Bordeaux

  • 4:15 – 5:45 p.m. : Opening ceremony : Enterprising culture
  • 5:45 – 7 p.m. : Session 1 : Data and culture - What are algorithms dreaming of? (*)     
  • 7 – 7:30 p.m. : 1st Cultural Start-up Award ceremony, announcement of the winners of the Jury Prize and Public Prize
  • 7:30 – 8 p.m. : Artistic performance
  • 8:30 – 10:30 p.m. : Dinner at the CAPC
  • 10 – 11:30 p.m : Yael Naim concert at the Théâtre Femina

Friday, April 1st
  • 8:45 – 10:25 a.m. : Session 2 – Are creators entrepreneurs like any other?
  • 10:25 – 10:50 a.m. : Artistic performance
  • 10:50 – 12 p.m.: Session 3 : Building the cultural and creative sector (tax system, intellectual property)
  • 12:20 – 12:40 p.m. : Key Notes
  • 12:45 – 2:15 p.m. : Lunch at Bordeaux City Hall
  • 2:30 – 3:40 p.m. : Session 4 : Entrepreneurs and artists, co-workers in the city of tomorrow?
  • 3:40 – 3:55 p.m. : Artistic performance
  • 3:55 – 5:15 p.m. : Perspectives (closing ceremony) Let's get involved ! (**)

(*) after the title of Dominique Cardon's book « What are algorithms dreaming of». Co-published by Seuil and La République des idées

(**) after the title of the book of Michelangelo Pistoletto and Edgar Morin « Impliquons-nous » published by Editions Actes Sud 


Innovative proposals prepared by major consulting firms. Fueled throughout 2015 by the working groups of the Forum d'Avignon, three exclusive international studies will be showcased during the International meetings:

  • with EY: 
    • Which intellectual property for the era of digitally native formats and the EU Single Market? By Bruno Perrin and Fabrice Naftalski
    •  Culture and Taxation: For a conquering European harmony. By Jean-Pierre Lieb, Eric Verron and Nicolas Genestier
    • with L’Atelier BNP Paribas :
      • Data and curation algorithms: How can companies and institutions in the cultural and creative sectors take the shift to data ? By Philippe Torres 

French and international leading figures from all horizons: artists, CEOs of leader businesses and start-ups, writers, filmmakers, political leaders, philosophers, students from international universities. To date, they have already announced their participation:

Institutional and political leaders
  • Aristídis Baltás, Greek Minister of Culture and philosopher, Zoltán Balog, Hungarian Minister of Human Resources, Irina Bokova, Director-General of Unesco, Isabel Botelho Leal, Portuguese Secretary of State for Culture, Wided Bouchamaoui, Leader of the Tunisian Confederation of Industry, Trade and Handicraft, member of the Tunisian National Dialogue Quartet – Nobel Peace Prize 2015, Laurent Fabius, French Minister of Foreign Affairs and International Development, Bertel Haarder, Danish Minister of Culture, Istvan Ijgyarto, Hungarian Minister of State for Cultural and Science Diplomacy, Amadou Kebe, Senegalese Minister of Foreign Affairs and Senegalese abroad, Sun-Young Kim, President of the Korea Arts Management Service (KAMS)  Miroslav Lajčak, Slovak Minister of Foreign Affairs, Emmanuel Macron, French Minister of Economy, Industry and Digital, Dace Melbārde, Latvian Minister of Culture, Catherine Morin-Desailly, President of the Culture, Education and Communication commission of the French Senate, Günther Oettinger, European Commissioner for Digital Economy and Society, Viviane Reding, Member of the European Parliament, former Vice-President of the European Commission, Didier Reynders, Belgian Vice-Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign and European Affairs.

Leading figures from the culture world and university 
  • Paul Andreu, Architect, Aurélien Bellanger, Writer, Françoise Benhamou, University Professor and Member of the Cercle des économistes, Dominique Cardon, sociologist at Orange Labs, Jérôme Clément, President of the Alliance Française Foundation and writer, Jean-Paul Cluzel, President of the RMN-Grand Palais, Odile Decq, Architect, Liza Donnelly, Cartoonist at The New-Yorker, Tishani Doshi, poet, Massimiliano Fuksas, Architect, Manuelle Gautrand, Architect, Amos Gitaï, Film director, Michel Hazanavicius, Film director and President of the ARP, Pierre Hermé, Pastry chef, Amit Khanna, Former CEO of Reliance Entertainment, Pierre Lescure, Chairman of the Cannes Film Festival, Albertine Meunier, Digital artist, Yael Naim, Singer-songwriter, pianist and guitarist, Michel Onfray, Philosopher, ORLAN, Visual artist, Dominique Perrault, Architect, Raphaël Pichon, Conductor and founder of Pygmalion ensemble, Michelangelo Pistoletto, Visual artist, Plantu, Press cartoonist, Olivier Poivre d'Arvor, Ambassador for the cultural attractiveness of territories, Thomas Paris, Affiliate Professor at HEC Paris and Researcher at GREGHEC, Lars Refn, Press cartoonist, Itay Talgam, Conductor, Pascale Marthine Tayou, artist, David Throsby, Professor at the Macquarie University, Willis From Tunis, Press cartoonist.

Business executives
  • Véronique Cayla, Chairwoman of Arte and Chairwoman of the management board of Arte France, Axel Dauchez, Chairman of Publicis France, Laurent Dumas, Chairman of Emerige, Isabelle Falque-Pierrotin, Chairwoman of the CNIL, Guillaume de Fondaumière, Managing Director and executive producer at Quantic Dream studio and President of the SNJV, Axel Ganz, Vice-President of the Forum d'Avignon, Olivier Gerolami, Chairman of Sud Ouest Group, Sana Ghenima, CEO at Sanabilmed, Isabelle Giordano, CEO at UniFrance Films, Victor Hadida, CEO, executive producer, co-producter, chairman at Metropolitan Film Export, Emmanuel Hoog, Chairman of the AFP, Alain Kouck, Chairman of Editis Holding, Denis Mollat, CEO at Mollat bookshop, Véronique Morali, CEO of Webedia and Fimalac Développement, Glenn O'Farrell, Chairman and chief of the direction of TFO Media Group, Stéphane Richard, CEO at Orange, Hervé Rony, CEO at SCAM, Nicolas Seydoux, Chairman of Gaumont, Gary Shapiro, President & CEO of the Consumer Electronics Association - Las Vegas, Alain Sussfeld, CEO at UGC, Sandrine Treiner, Director of France Culture, Jean-Noël Tronc, CEO at Sacem.

NEW IN 2016

The Forum d'Avignon highlights cultural start-ups

The 1st Cultural Start-up Award organized by the Forum d'Avignon will be awarded on March 31 at the Grand Théâtre of Bordeaux. The jury, chaired by Véronique Morali, is composed of prominent figures from the cultural, creative, and innovation sectors, including: 

  • Léonard Anthony, Associate Director at Susanna Lea Associates and Co-founder at Éditions Versilio,
  • Cynthia Fleury, Philosopher and Associate Professor at the American University of Paris,
  • Nicolas Gaume, Director of Developer eXperience at Microsoft France and Vice-president of the SNJV,
  • Isabelle Ginestet-Naudin, Director of the department for sector-based funds at BPI France,
  • Agnès Grangé, Regional Officer at La Poste and French Tech Bordeaux Coordinator,
  • Tony Jazz, Artist and Innovation & Marketing consultant at TJCM,
  • Frédéric Josué, Global Executive Advisor to Havas Media Chairman, Director of,
  • Thanh Nghiem, Founder at Angenius Institute,
  • Josette Normandeau, President and producer at Ideacom International,
  • Armelle Pasco, Director of the Institutional and Cultural partnerships at Orange,
  • Paul Rondin, Executive manager of the Festival d'Avignon,
  • Constance Rubini, Director of the Museum of decorative Arts and Design of Bordeaux,
  • Mehdi Tayoubi, Strategy & Innovation Vice-president at Dassault Systèmes and Co-founder at HIP Institute.
The debates on Thursday, March 31st are open to the public.

The Grand Tour :  January – July 2016

The Forum d'Avignon @Bordeaux has been selected by the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Development to be one of the 40 stages of the Grand Tour, which showcases major cultural events of international scope. 

Video recording of the debates by Mollat – Station Ausone. 


A free concert offered to all by the Forum d'Avignon on the stage of the Théâtre Fémina featurnig this year... Yael Naim!

Debates combined with artistic performances by art critic Hector Obalk, pianist Imy Talgam, conductor Raphael Pichon and his Pygmalion ensemble (with reservations), …

Live sketching of the debates by cartoonists of Cartooning for Peace Liza Donnelly (USA), Plantu (France), Lars Refn (Denmark), Willis From Tunis (Tunisia).

Meals coordinated by Pierre Hermé. Chefs Bruno d'Angelis from Avignon and Tanguy Laviale from Bordeaux and the hotel school of Bordeaux Talence will embody the Avignon-Bordeaux connection. 

Created in 2007, the Forum d’Avignon is a think tank and an international meeting place at the service of culture, the cultural and creative sector and their dialogue with the economic and digital fields. Since 2011, the International Meetings of the Forum d’Avignon have also expanded abroad, in Germany (Forum d’Avignon @Ruhr) and in Spain (Forum d’Avignon @Bilbao). The think tank of the Forum d’Avignon has especially highlighted the weight of the creative and cultural industries in the economy, which account for 6% of the GOP and 8 million direct jobs in Europe, it has demonstrated the multiplying effect of culture-related investments on growth and has quantified the role of culture in the attractiveness of territories.

Website of the think tank

Website of the International Meetings of the Forum d'Avignon @Bordeaux

@forumavignon     #FAbdx

Contacts :
  • Press Service of Bordeaux city hall: 

In Bordeaux - Nicolas CORNE / Maryvonne FRUAUFF -

In Paris – Claudine Colin Agency –  Anne Monéger-Laval / Dereen O’Sullivan

  • Communication and partnerships service of the Forum d’Avignon: 

Valérie Escaudemaison, Responsable communication, partenariats et rencontres

  • Programming, think tank and International Meetings of the Forum d'Avignon:

Laure Kaltenbach, Managing director –

Olivier Le Guay, Editorial manager –

Camille Gauthier, Project manager –

Antoine Kauffer, Project manager –