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Cities: Living Labs for Culture? - 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia & Europe

Project Period: Contact: Department: Programme: Theme:
24 Nov 2015 Stefania MANGANO Culture Department ASEF Cultural Policy Dialogue Series Culture
Economy


Venue:
Gwangju, Korea

Cities of today are becoming vibrant spaces for experimentation, with ‘Creative Cities’ and ‘Capitals of Culture’ emerging across Asia and Europe as dynamic centres of creativity and innovation. Furthermore, cities are significant in brokering inter-regional, cross-sectorial and inter-generational understanding. 

Cities: Living Labs for Culture? - 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe (24 November 2015, Asia Culture Center, Gwangju, Korea), explored the theme of cities as living labs for culture. It provided a platform to discuss the role of the arts and culture in shaping sustainable, balanced and inclusive cities.

The results of the Forum were presented at the 1st Senior Officials' Meeting (2 February 2016) in preparation for the 7th ASEM Culture Ministers' Meeting (ASEM CMM7) (22-24 June 2016). The 8th ASEF Public Forum was credited in the Chair’s Statement of the ASEM CMM7. ASEM Ministers of Cultures recognized the strategic contribution of the 8th ASEF Public Forum in setting the stage for the ministerial discussion and "providing the platform to seek the role of arts and culture in shaping sustainable balanced cities".

Key messages of the Forum included the need for increased ownership by local communities, and for cultural leaders to develop a greater appreciation of other sectors (business, health, etc.). The introduction of formal programmes to re-invigorate mid-career cultural leaders was also encouraged, as well as the creation of spaces for self-reflection and assumption-testing.

The Public Forum was organised by the Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF) in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Republic of Korea and Gwangju Metropolitan City. It was organised in the framework of the Asia Culture Forum (ACF). It was held at the newly inaugurated Asia Culture Center (ACC). Has been held with the support of Korea Tourism Organisation (KTO); Gwangju Convention & Visitors Bureau; International Conference on Cultural Policy Research (ICCPR); Korea National Commission for UNESCO; the Association of Asian Culture Studies; and Chonnam National University.

Panel discussions were held on four key issues facing cities in Asia and Europe:

  1. Culture and policymaking in the city: how to make culture accessible to all?
  2. The Capital of Culture model: a catalyst for cultural development in the city
  3. What role for cultural institutions in shaping Creative Cities?
  4. Cities: leadership and creativity incubators?

The report of the Forum and the programme with brief profiles of the 15 panelists are available in the Documents section of this web page.

The Forum in Gwangju marked the launch of Cities: Living Labs for Culture? – Case Studies from Asia and Europe, a compilation of essays and 27 case studies that drawn upon the experiences of 40 cities from across Asia and Europe. It also allowed for the introduction of Creative Responses to Sustainability (Korea Guide), authored by Yasmine OSTENDORF and published by ASEF, which maps cultural initiatives across the country engaging with social and environmental issues.

The Second Edition of the publication has been released in May 2016, which now includes the also the 8th ASEF Public Forum report.

You can follow the conversation on social media at #ASEFforum8 and #asefculture

The 8th ASEF Public Forum is part of a long-running dialogue series on policy issues of mutual interest and social relevance for Asia and Europe. Past Experts' Meetings and Public Forums have taken place in: Amsterdam, Netherlands (2014)Hanoi, Viet Nam (2013); Yangon, Myanmar (2013); Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2012); Melbourne, Australia (2011); Seoul, Korea (2011); and Amsterdam, Netherlands (2010).

 

Partners

  • Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, Republic of Korea
  • Gwangju Metropolitan City
  • Chonnam National University Eurasia Institute
  • Asia Culture Forum

Project Updates

  • In 2016, the topic ‘culture and creative economy’ has been recognised as one of the main priorities in the ASEM cultural agenda. Based on that the relation between global development of creative cities and the rise of creative economy will be the focus of the upcoming 7th ASEM Cultural Ministers’ Meeting (ASEM CMM7). This will also be an opportunity to look at cultural heritage and high technology as tools to boost a positive dialogue among Asian and European countries.

    Outcomes of the 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe, which took place on 24 November 2015 in Gwangju, Korea, will be part of the recommendations for the 1st Senior Officials Meeting on 2 February 2016 in Gwangju. This SOM is organised to prepare the consultations for ASEM CMM7 to be held in June 2016, in Korea. 

    Some of the outcomes from the 8th ASEF Public Forum are highlighted below:

    According to the panellists of the Forum, cities today are trying to overcome inter-regional, cross-sectorial and inter-generational barriers, while including ‘culture’ in their political and economic agenda. This has been the case of European and Asian capitals of culture. As living laboratories for cultural incubation, cities show the ability to be more adaptable and responsive than countries. When it comes to policy-making, their cultural institutions are increasingly been looked at as leadership models, with their ability to connect with local communities and the fast changing society. Cultural leaders and practitioners are promoting public-private partnership demonstrating the positive outcomes of engaging stakeholders for sustainable development of cities. Cultural networks have been addressed as an adaptive solution to promote inter-cultural understanding and existing models such as the Asia-Europe Museum Network (ASEMUS) has been recognised for its pivotal role in promoting dialogue between the two regions. 

    Click here to read the full 8th ASEF Public Forum report.

  • Cities are increasingly acting as catalysts for culture-led urban development in Asia and Europe. Through people-centred policies, inclusive governance and speedy decision-making, cities are proving to be innovative hubs for creativity. Areas of mutual bi-regional interest include experiences in participatory policy-making and access to culture for citizens. This was the key message of the 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe - Cities: Living Labs for Culture? which brought together 15 speakers from 13 countries on 24 November 2015 in Gwangju, Korea. The forum was held as part of 2015 Asia Culture Forum to mark the opening of the Asia Culture Center, the single largest cultural project in the history of Korea.

    The forum was opened by H E Jong-deok KIM, Minister for Culture, Sports and Tourism, Republic of Korea in presence of H E YOON Janghyun, Mayor of Gwangju, H E LIM Hyangsoo, Chairperson, Presidential Committee for Hub City of Asian Culture, and Ambassador ZHANG Yan, Executive Director, Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF). The report of the forum can be downloaded here. 

    The publication, Cities: Living Labs for Culture? - Case Studies from Asia and Europe (2015, ASEF) was launched at the forum. It presents 27 case studies and 5 essays, which draw upon the experiences of 40 cities. The forum and the publication explore 4 topics of mutual interest for Asia and Europe: arts leadership, policy-making at the city level, the changing role of cultural institutions in today's cities and capitals of culture as innovative models of foregrounding the arts.

    The outcomes of the forum will be presented at the 7th ASEM Culture Ministers’ Meeting(ASEM CMM7 2016, Korea), which will be hosted by the Government of Korea against the backdrop of the 20th Anniversary of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM). The importance of creativity and the arts in socio-economic development is high on the ASEM cultural agenda since 2014. 

  • Cities: Living Labs for Culture? - 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe will take place on 24 November 2015 in Gwangju, Korea, in conjunction with the 2015 Asia Culture Forum, dedicated to this year’s theme of sustainable city development through culture.

    This event will mark the launch of “Cities: Living Labs for Culture? – Case Studies from Asia and Europe”, a selection of case studies and essays contributing to the ongoing debates on the role of culture in the sustainable development of cities.

    Renowned civil society experts and local governments’ representatives participating in the 8th ASEF Public Forum will also address the importance of the key role of cities in the growth of creative economy. The forum will serve as an inspiration for the upcoming 7th ASEM Culture Ministers’ Meeting (ASEM CMM7), which will focus specifically on the topic of creative economy, exploring its connections with the themes of cities, heritage and ICT. The ministerial meeting, also held at the Asia Culture Center in Gwangju in 2016, will bring together Ministers of Culture from Asia and Europe, who meet biennially in the framework of the Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM).

    The 8th ASEF Public Forum is organised by ASEF in partnership with the Asia Culture Forum and Gwangju Metropolitan City along with the support of the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism, the Republic of Korea, the Asian Culture Center, Gwangju Convention & Visitors Bureau and Chonnam National University.

  • The Asia-Europe Foundation (ASEF), in partnership with Gwangju Metropolitan City and the Asia Culture Forum (ACF) along with the support of the Ministry of Culture, Sport and Tourism, the Republic of Korea, the Asia Culture Center, Gwangju Convention & Visitors Bureau and Chonnam National University, is organising  Cities: Living Labs for Culture? - 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe on 24 November 2015 at the Asia Culture Center in Gwangju, Korea.

    Located in the heart of the city of Gwangju, the new Asia Culture Center serves as the main facility of Gwangju as Hub City of Asian Culture. This project is the single largest cultural project in the history of Korea. It aims to establish a platform for exchanges among Asian countries. The Asia Culture Center, placing art and culture at the centre of the debates, will offer the perfect location for discussions between government representatives and civil society experts on key issues faced by today’s cities in Asia and Europe. The detailed programme is now available online.

    The 8th ASEF Public Forum is part of a long-running dialogue series on policy issues of mutual interest and common relevance for Asia and Europe. Past Experts' Meetings and Public Forums have taken place in Amsterdam, Netherlands (2014)Hanoi, Viet Nam (2013), Yangon, Myanmar (2013), Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2012), Melbourne, Australia (2011), Seoul, Korea (2011) and Amsterdam, Netherlands (2010).

  • ASEF, in partnership with the Ministry of Culture, Sports and Tourism, the Republic of Korea, Gwangju Metropolitan Government, and Chonnam National University, is organising the 8th ASEF Public Forum on Creative Cities in Asia and Europe on 24 November 2015 in Gwangju, Korea. Titled “Cities: Living Labs for Culture?” this forum will provide an opportunity for civil experts, practitioners and government officials to exchange ideas and insights on the role of the arts and culture in shaping creative cities.

    The forum, held alongside the opening of the Asian Culture Complex in Gwangju, will also mark the launch of two publications: Cities: Living Labs for Culture? Good Practices from Asia and Europe, a compilation of essays and case studies, as well as Creative Responses to Sustainability (Korea Guide), which maps cultural initiatives across the country engaging with social and environmental issues.

    Among the speakers are leading voices from Asia and Europe: Ms Fionnuala CROKE, Director, Chester Beatty Library; Ms Catherine CULLEN, Chair United Cities and Local Governments’ (UCLG) Committee on Culture; Ms Arundhati GHOSH, Director, India Foundation for the Arts; Mr Ridwan KAMIL, Mayor of Bandung; Mr Yusaku IMAMURA, Director, Tokyo Wonder Site; Mr Phloeun PRIM, Executive Director, Cambodian Living Arts; Mr Joe SIDEK, Artistic Director, Georgetown Festival; and Mr Karsten XUEREB, Executive Director, Valletta 2018 Foundation.

    The 8th ASEF Public Forum is part of a long-running dialogue series on policy issues of mutual interest and common relevance for Asia and Europe. Past Experts' Meetings and Public Forums have taken place in Amsterdam, Netherlands (2014)Hanoi, Viet Nam and Yangon, Myanmar (2013), Yogyakarta, Indonesia (2012), Melbourne, Australia and Seoul, Korea (2011) and Amsterdam, Netherlands (2010).