Minister of State for International Cultural Policy Michelle Müntefering issued the following statement on the Sixth Long Night of Ideas today (6 June 2021):
The Long Night of Ideas focuses on the major issues which will define our future: democracy, the digital transformation and sustainability. With our international cultural policy we are addressing precisely these challenges. In recent years, we have stepped up our commitment to academic freedom and space for social engagement. We have put sustainability at the heart of our work and have provided key momentum for the creation of a digital European cultural space. The 2020 report on cultural relations and education policy speaks for itself: we are promoting strong international cultural policy to uphold peace, security and international cooperation and shape our future together. I call upon all of you to join in and use the Long Night of Ideas to experience the many different ideas on the future of international cultural policy.
On 7 June 2021, the Federal Foreign Office is for the sixth time organising the Long Night of Ideas as part of the forum Menschen Bewegen 2021. It provides a detailed insight into the cultural relations and education policy initiatives launched by the Federal Foreign Office and its partner organisations. On 7 June, the Long Night of Ideas will begin at 6 p.m. with a speech by Minister of State Michelle Müntefering. This will be followed by a high-level podium discussion with the President of the German Archaeological Institute, the President of the Goethe-Institut, the President of the German Academic Exchange Service, the Director of the Ethnological Museum and the Museum of Asian Art of the National Museums in Berlin, Deutsche Welle and Member of the German Bundestag Ulla Schmidt (SPD). From 7.30 p.m. to 1.00 a.m., Katie Gallus and Tarik Tesfu will showcase the entire spectrum of cultural relations and education policy together with the Federal Foreign Office with a mix of cultural performances, music, film clips and live transmissions. You can consult the programme for the event at the menschenbewegen2021.de website (in German).
The 2020 report on cultural relations and education policy was adopted by the Federal Government on 19 May. In 2020, the Federal Government helped the Goethe-Institut and German schools abroad cope with the COVID‑19 crisis by providing emergency programmes. Together with the Goethe-Institut and other civil society partners, the Federal Foreign Office also initiated an aid fund to support cultural and educational institutions abroad. In 2020, a total of 141 projects in 75 countries received support of up to 25,000 euro. Other priorities for cultural relations and education policy in 2020 included the cultural programme accompanying the German Presidency of the EU Council, work to extend international museum cooperation, to come to terms with colonialism and to promote creative industries.