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CultureInvest! Congress

Welcoming addresses for the CultureInvest! Congress, Europe's leading culture congress


Greeting of Mariya Gabriel, EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth


"United in Diversity" - the motto of the European Union is straightforward in reminding us how crucial cultural diversity is for the European project.  Our continent is a mosaic of diversity shaped by centuries of dialogue and exchanges between different nations, languages and cultures and in this diversity it thrived and developed its unique cultural richness.

It is through culture that we interpret the world. The more diverse it is, the greater the depth of our understanding of what surrounds us – of what it means to be human.

So it is only natural that, as a Union, we strive to broaden the limits of our culture. We want to preserve – indeed often even to restore, what was left by our ancestors. Their inheritance, our cultural heritage, is precious and inspiring. On the other hand, we are not passive recipients of this heritage. We make it our own, through innovative approaches and critical thinking. We build upon it to make it a dynamic, living library of human expression – not just with new art, but with new art forms, new practices, new vocabularies, so that we can all live united in diversity.

To foster this living library, we need to foster those that write it. Music, literature, the performing arts, architecture, fashion – cultural and creative sectors interact and constantly evolve. Their interaction creates powerful ecosystems where artists can inspire each other, think different, innovate and create together.

The 13th CultureInvest! Congress does precisely this. It fosters cultural transfers between some of the most creative people we have, helping them innovate. Events like this truly help us develop an ecosystem supporting artists, cultural and creative professionals, and enriching our library of European content.

I trust that, during this difficult time, as the cultural and creative sectors start to recover from the COVID-19 crisis, your passion and work will highlight solutions and bring a new impetus to our cultural milieu. Millions of Europeans around our continent will be inspired by your ideas and innovative initiatives.

It is because of the work of our cultural and creative sectors that we have, time and time again, faced challenges with creativity and confidence. Let us reassess entrenched patterns and build on the potential of culture – for a new start into a sustainable future!


Mariya Gabriel

EU Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth


Greeting of Barbara Klepsch, Saxon State Minister for Culture and Tourism


Dear guests of the CultureInvest! Congress,

I would like to welcome you to Dresden, the capital of Saxony as the city of culture. I am delighted that the CultureInvest! Congress is being held here in Saxony for the first time - in a region that is particularly exciting for cultural providers and promoters. Not only Chemnitz' successful application to become the European Capital of Culture 2025, but also those of Dresden and Zittau have set important impulses that continue to have an impact. A particularly valuable echo of Dresden's application is the hosting of the CultureInvest! Congress.

That is why we are pleased to be able to financially support the staging of the forum. Already the ideas of the then applicant city of Görlitz 15 years ago have released forces that have an impact far beyond the city and the Free State of Saxony. All this shows the possibilities that culture can unfold alongside artistic work: It gives dialogues and encounters, analyses and perspectives a space of their own. It is our task to maintain this space and to keep developing it, with an awareness of traditions and an openness for the new.

We need togetherness to do justice to this task - to shape this process together. The CultureInvest! Congress offers an ideal framework for this, whether through interdisciplinary cooperation or through the exchange of ideas about sustainability, generation-appropriate cultural work and, last but not least, social and private-sector commitment to culture. The latter is a challenge for Saxony, because even 31 years after German unification, the corporate structure here is still different from that in West Germany - because it takes longer to build up patronage in a transition society. This is another reason why the Free State of Saxony sees itself as having a special responsibility: Saxony has the highest per capita spending on culture among the German territorial states and, with its unique cultural areas, offers the cities and communities a great deal of financial security. Furthermore, we want to preserve our diverse cultural heritage, but we also want to promote a rich cultural life that shapes the present and the future.

Hosting the CultureInvest! Congress in Dresden offers great opportunities to further expand international exchange about the cultural market in Saxony. With its location in the center of Europe, it is important to the Free State of Saxony to think beyond borders and to act accordingly, also when it comes to cultural issues. I am all the more pleased that the European Capital of Culture 2025 will be located in Saxony and that in Chemnitz the local will be linked with the global, that on the way to Chemnitz 2025 we will also engage in transnational exchange about culture and tackle joint projects. I hope to be able to welcome you again and again in our Free State!

Barbara Klepsch

Saxony's State Minister for Culture and Tourism


Greeting of Dirk Hilbert, Lord Mayor of the City of Dresden


Dear guests,

Since 2009, the CultureInvest! Congress has been regarded as the leading forum for culture providers and culture promoters in Europe. It brings both sides together, provides for exchange, asks questions about the future. I am very pleased that Dresden, the capital of the German state of Saxony, will be hosting this important European meeting in 2021. Under the motto "transnational - Solutions for a culture beyond", personalities and experts from culture, business, politics and the media will exchange views on transnational cultural and social interaction at Kraftwerk Mitte. A warm welcome to all who are interested!

Today we live in a Europe in which production chains and trade routes are globally developed and political coordination and decisions are often made centrally. This sometimes creates feelings of powerlessness. At the same time, people in different countries, regions and cities are increasingly demanding to be involved. They want to contribute with their interests, help shape processes and campaign for concrete goals. Information, communication and exchange are important forces to be supported in this process.

Culture and art have the potential to accompany transnational changes with creative means and to shape common values. Dresden provides examples: Even historic Dresden was shaped by the work of people from all over Europe - in crafts, architecture and the arts. The Saxon kings collected works of art beyond national borders that are still admired today in the world-famous museums. And Dresden continues to invest in places of culture and exchange, most recently, for example, in the Mitte power plant and in the reconstruction of the Kulturpalast. In addition, Dresden has also been an efficient science and research location for many centuries, now with a university of excellence, numerous colleges, institutes and renowned international companies that employ bright minds from all over the world. Internationality spurs our development.

Even if the pandemic is a challenge for the culture and congress industry, we look forward to your event. It enriches the cultural offerings in our city that have grown over many decades. This includes events and exhibitions with foreign artists as well as special festivals - for example the Music Festival, the Ostrale, the Intercultural Days, the Czech-German and Polish-German Culture Days, the offerings in "HELLERAU - European Center of the Arts" or the International Children's Choir Festival. This year Saxony is also partner country of the "German Week" in St. Petersburg. Dresden is actively participating and at the same time celebrating 60 years of this city partnership. It is one of a total of 13 worldwide connections of this kind.

Its venue is new and exciting: a former power plant site has been transformed into a location for art, culture and the creative industries. It is home to two municipal theaters, conservatory rehearsal rooms, the Energy Museum, exhibition spaces, gastronomy and event location. It is a center of inspiration and therefore the right place for your meeting. I wish all participants interesting impressions and a stimulating exchange of knowledge!

Dirk Hilbert

Lord Mayor of the State Capital Dresden

Greeting of Hans-Conrad Walter, Organizer and Managing Director of Causales - Gesellschaft für Kulturmarketing und Kultursponsoring mbH



The CultureInvest! Congress has been successfully bringing together personalities from culture, business, media and politics from all over Europe since 2009 and has generated international appeal in the European cultural market with the presentation of the European Cultural Brand Awards, the most advanced cultural prize in Europe. Europe's largest cultural Congress annually presents artistic projects of excellence, discusses innovative topics of cultural policy as well as cultural management, marketing, investment and sets important impulses through the internationally acclaimed two-day exchange of culture, business, media and the public sector.

For two days every year, European decision-makers come together and use the opportunity of the ever-growing network to exchange their experiences and knowledge and, in addition, to develop innovative visions for the European cultural market.

Thanks to the warm invitation and generous sponsorship by the Free State of Saxony and the City of Dresden, we are able to invite you this year to Kraftwerk Mitte Dresden, the innovative art, culture and creative location with 40,000 square meters of usable space in an excellent city center location. Dresden, as an internationally renowned art and culture metropolis in the southeast of Germany and in the middle of Europe, the international art and culture quarter Kraftwerk Mitte Dresden as a Congress campus, the Staatsoperette Dresden as the venue for the award ceremony of the European Cultural Brand Awards and the Albertinum in the heart of the baroque old town for the opening party provide an ideal backdrop for a lively cultural summit of the year 2021.

150 experts and contributors as well as 650 participants are invited to debate about transnationalism and its important meaning for culture and economy, for locality and globality, and to develop forward-looking solutions for a transnational self-understanding in our culture and society. The motto of the 13th CultureInvest!! Congress "#transnational - Solutions for a Culture beyound" promises interesting ideas, debates and solutions as well as a unique knowledge transfer by implementing the topic in all established expert forums of the CultureInvest! Congress. In addition, the CultureInvest! Congress will highlight solutions for digitalization and cultural financing, especially to make the cultural market visible again after the pandemic standstill and to get it moving.

We offer lively discussions in the main forum and invite you to 18 parallel expert forums in six other charismatic locations on the unique industrial monument. In addition, you can expect an attractive supporting program with an opening party as well as an award ceremony of the 16th European Cultural Brands Awards with great emotions in the "Night of Cultural Brands". Together with our partners, we have set ourselves the goal of bringing local, regional and international cultural managers together at the CultureInvest! Congress 2021 and to promote the further development of Kraftwerk Mitte Dresden as an international hot spot of the cultural and creative industries with creative ideas, as well as to further promote the cosmopolitanism and the creative will of Dresden's urban society.

From November 11-12, 2021, the Kraftwerk Mitte in Dresden will become the largest think tank of the European cultural market and the art and cultural metropolis Dresden will become an innovative driving force for a transnational transformation towards a Europe of regions and communities. Become part of this unique knowledge transfer and come to the beautiful Florence on the Elbe, which is also my birthplace and hometown. Already now I would like to thank my dedicated team, all participating speakers, partners, service providers, but especially the Free State of Saxony and the City of Dresden for their generous support and I am looking forward to exciting encounters!


Yours, Hans-Conrad Walter

Organizer and Managing Director of Causales - Gesellschaft für Kulturmarketing und Kultursponsoring mbH


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