News & events > ASEF LinkUp | Asia-Europe Cultural Diplomacy Lab 2023
24 May 2023

ASEF LinkUp | Asia-Europe Cultural Diplomacy Lab 2023

ASEF Culture is launching a new activity titled ASEF LinkUp | Asia-Europe Cultural Diplomacy Lab in the framework of ASEF culture360 2023.

Through this project, ASEF wants to create new spaces for encounters and capacity building where various agents involved in cultural cooperation (e.g. diplomats, managers, funders, artists) can meet and share knowledge and approaches from different regions. For the first edition of ASEF LinkUp, we will invite curators, arts managers and artists to “link-up” with the diplomats and cultural attaches based in Singapore and the ASEAN region.

The project responds to the recommendations that have emerged from the Roundtable Series Recalibrating the Compass: What Future for Asia-Europe Cultural Relations developed by ASEF Culture in 2022. Among other challenges,  the consultation process revealed the presence of inequalities or imbalances around cultural relations, further exacerbated by the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Cultural diplomacy or more broadly cultural relations or cultural cooperation has evolved much in the last few years, from being purely developed as a soft power tool in the hands of national governments and international organisations to comprising a wide range of stakeholders, including local and regional governments with international cultural activities, private foundations, civil society networks and initiatives, national and local cultural organisations and professionals with international activities. In this sense, cultural relations go far beyond national governments and international organisations, and rely on civil society organisations, professionals, companies, universities, youth, networks, and several other agents. While this is increasingly recognised in theory, much remains to be done in practice.

With this activity, ASEF aims to bring artists closer to the diplomatic sector and to develop networking opportunities for arts practitioners and public sector representatives working on international cultural cooperation. 

The event will be organised in Singapore on 24-27 October 2023 and will be presented alongside the 5th Edition of the Asia-Europe Cultural Festival 2023.

All participants for this programme have been selected. Stay tuned to find out who they are.