Created on Monday, 25 September 2017 11:54
On September 20 -21, 2017, Sofia hosted the international conference Quality of Education’17: Children in the Digital Era, co-organized by UNESCO, Unit and Sofia Development Association. The conference was opened by the European Commissioner on digital economy Maria Gabriel. The delegates, coming from over 30 states, presented their proposals for the modernization of educational systems, information technologies in favor of professional and informal education, upbringing in the digital world. Sevdalina Voynova, SDA, was a panelist in the conference and presented the work of the Digital Transition Partnership, part of the Urban Agenda for the EU. The partnership aims to develop better regulations, financial mechanisms, business opportunities and public services in the process of digitatization of health care and social care, education, urban planning, e-governance. By the end of the year the Action plan to be discussed with the European Commission will be developed and presented. Sofia municipality with the support of SDA is the coordinator of the partnership together with Oulu, Finland, and Estonia.
The conferece was streamed online at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qqjofRzR7zw&feature=youtu.be.
Created on Wednesday, 20 September 2017 13:39
The workshop, organized by “Law and Internet” foundation and the Ministry of Transport took place on September 20, 2017, in the framework of the international UNESCO conference “Children in the Digital Era”. Sevdalina Voynova with SDA was a pannelist in the program devoted to primary and secondary education. The panel discussed the effect of the digital transition on education and how to develop awareness and skills for cybersecurity among students. Among the panel’s recommendations are the development of integrated digital environment in schools, including school process, additional resources, interaction with parents and teachers; overcoming the digital divide; establishing links between cybersecurity and European values; mechanisms for human capital development. The discussion also focused ont he opportunities for the advancement of these measures provided by the Digital transition partnership of the European Urban Agenda, which is coordinated by Sofia.
Parallel to the workshop, also in the building of Sofia Library was launched the Students Hackathon “Smart School 4 Smart Schoolchildren”, co-organized by Sofia Development Association. The students are coding solutions for increased interest and motivation for learning, interaction between students, teachers and parents, combating aggression at school.
Created on Friday, 08 September 2017 11:23
In 1997 the Council of Europe defines hate speech as “all forms of expressions that spread, incite, promote or justify racial hatred, xenophobia, anti-Semitism or other forms of hatred based on intolerance”.
Why do we provide you with this definition? Because we believe that the first step towards defeating a certain problem is to pinpoint what that problem is. So now we know what hate speech is, but what does it look like?
The answer is simple. We see it every day. We read about it on social media, we pass by it on the streets. Hate speech is the article you read yesterday about the young man from Iraq, Syria or Egypt, who beat a child on the streets, the article which turns out to be a lie, targeting you as the next victim of its popularization. Hate speech is the man who is offending another person on the streets because of the language he speaks or his skin colour. Hate speech is everywhere. It doesn’t have a day off or a curfew, it goes beyond business hours.
So we now know what it looks like, but why does hate speech exist? It exists because we allow it to exist. It exists because we agree to listen to it, read it and see it everywhere. It exists because we don’t take action.
So how do we stop it? We, from the Sofia Development Association, start from where the modern world meets its fastest development – the internet.
Alongside 7 other organizations from 6 other countries - Libera Università di Lingue e Comunicazione IULM - IUL and Associazione FORMA.Azione from Italy, the Languages Company from the UK, Center for Peace from Croatia, People in Need from the Czech Republic, Asociația Divers from Romania and the Municipality of Agii Anargiri-Kamatero from Greece – and with the financial help of the European Commission we started working on the “Coalition of Positive Messengers to Counter Online Hate Speech” project.
We began our work on 1 October 2016 and we hope to achieve our goals until 30 September 2018.
Our initiative addresses the need for a more effective answer to hate speech from our society. The project focuses on two main goals – establishing a coalition of many people and organizations which works towards demolishing hate speech online and spreading positive messages by creating campaigns aiming towards educating and informing people about what it is like to be an immigrant and the challenges you face when you have very few choices in your life.
Our main goal is to create a working mechanism for pushing back hate speech and stopping xenophobia from developing and spreading in our society.
We also aim towards providing new data about the essence, range and impact of hate speech online, so we can help local and national authorities to develop more effective ways of combating hate speech and encourage communication and tolerance between the European society and the most vulnerable people groups – immigrants and refugees.
So how can YOU help?
Take action when you see a display of xenophobia and lack of tolerance, don’t allow yourself to get used to them. Spread positive messages in your community and together with the people around you create an environment of tolerance and understanding.
Keep an eye on our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/positivemessengers/ and website https://www.positivemessengers.net for more news and information on our campaigns and how you can join our cause.
Created on Monday, 31 July 2017 09:54
PATHS TO INNOVATION IN CULTURE
European and local cultural policies and future scenarios for cultural management
The Goethe-Institutes in Sofia, Bucharest and Thessaloniki, the City of Sofia and the Sofia Development Association are glad to announce an open call for papers in the framework of their joint project – the Cultural Management Academy, which is certified by the St. Kliment Ohridski University in Sofia and the Aristotle University in Thessaloniki.
Тheoreticians and practitioners from Bulgaria, Greece, and Romania can submit papers proposing innovative approaches and new perspectives on cultural management and cultural policies on European, national and local level.
The editorial board consisting of experts from the field of cultural management from Bulgaria, Greece, Romania and Germany will select papers to be presented and discussed at the international conference of the same name on 29 September 2017 in Sofia and to be published in a print and digital publication later on.
3. Editorial board
4. Who can apply?
5. Why to apply?
6. About the Cultural Management Academy (CMA)
What innovation in culture do we need if we take into consideration the current state of things and the cultural policies? How can cultural management contribute to such an innovation in culture? What is the future of cultural management? What are possible new approaches and tools? How can cultural policies on European, national and local level be more responsive to the needs of culture? What is the role of the cultural manager in the field of policy?
Theoreticians and practitioners from the field of cultural management are invited to propose possible answers and solutions, but also to ask more questions about the cultural context in Bulgaria, Greece, Romania and Europe in general.
Through the open call the organisers look for various positions and points of view on European, national and local cultural policies, comments, critiques, reflections and recommendations based on examples from the practice and the practical experience of the applicants. The organisers aim at mapping possible solutions and suggestions for changes, development and innovation through new approaches in culture and through stimulating the dialogue between policy and practice in the field of cultural management. Argumentation through examples and study cases from the practice will be highly appreciated.
Furthermore, the papers can be developed in the context of the European Agenda for Culture:
The Commission Communication ‘Towards an EU Strategy for International Cultural Relations’ presented by the Commission and the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy in mid-2016 is aimed at encouraging cultural cooperation between the EU and its partner countries and promoting a global order based on peace, the rule of law, freedom of expression, mutual understanding and respect for fundamental values.
Papers can be in English, Bulgarian, Greek or Romanian, but preferably in English.
Papers must contain:
- Title and subtitle of the paper
- Author's name and information about the author (position, working place, academic title)
- Key words
- Figures, tables and images (if applicable)
- In English
- Up to 1500 characters
Final versions of the papers
- In English, Bulgarian, Greek or Romanian, but preferably in English.
- 6 to 10 A4 pages, incl. figures and tables, images and literature (images to be gathered on 2 pages)
- Times New Roman, 12 pt.
- 2 cm margins on all sides
2. Submission and deadlines
First phase of the call for papers:
Selected applicants will be informed until 17th September 2017 (extended).
Second phase of the call for papers:
The summaries of the selected applicants will be presented and discussed in working groups during the international conference of the CMA 2017 on 29th September.
Third phase of the call for papers:
In the spring of the 2018 the final publication consisting of all selected papers and commissioned articles/papers and impressions of the Cultural Management Academy 2017 to be published in print and digital form.
3. Editorial board
The editorial board selects the papers to be included in the publication based on the submitted summaries. Members of the editorial board:
- Argyro Barata (CMA Greece)
- Miki Braniste (CMA Bucharest)
- Stefka Tsaneva (CMA Sofia, Goethe-Institute Bulgaria)
- Enzio Wetzel (director of Goethe-Institut Bulgaria)
- Petya Koleva (Interkultura Consult)
- Vladiya Mihaylova (curator, Vaska Emanuilova Gallery Sofia, branch of the Sofia City Art Gallery)
- Malina Edreva (chair of the commission for culture and education of the City of Sofia)
- Svetlana Lomeva (director of Sofia Development Association)
- Dr. Nelly Stoeva (Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”)
- Dr. Georgi Valchev (deputy rector of Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski”)
4. Who can apply?
- Participants in all editions of the Cultural Management Academy 2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017.
- Theoreticians and practitioners in the field of cultural management and cultural policies from Bulgaria, Greece and Romania.
5. Why to apply with a paper?
Selected applicants have:
- The opportunity to publish a paper in a professional publication on cultural management which will be distributed digitally and in print form in Bulgaria, Greece, Romania, Germany and other European countries through the communication channels of all organisers and partners of the Cultural Management Academy: the Goethe-Institutes in Sofia, Bucharest and Thessaloniki as well as other Goethe-Institutes in Europe, the City of Sofia and the Sofia Development Association, the Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” and the Aristotle University, the foreign cultural institutes from the EUNIC-clusters in the three countries.
- Possibility for exchange and mentorship with the members of the editorial board.
- Possibility for professional exchange and discussion of the papers during the international conference.
- Selected participants (who have not participated in the CMA before) become part of the CMA network.
- Selected participants (who have not participated in the CMA before) get a 50% discount on the participation fee in future editions of the CMA.
6. About the Cultural Management Academy (CMA)
The CMA started as a project by the Soﬁa Development Association in cooperation with the Soﬁa University „St. Kliment Ohridski“ in 2014 as part of the city´s application for the title European Capital of Culture. The main goal of the project is to build capacity and to increase the competences of the cultural operators in Soﬁa and the region regarding the challenges of a large-scale initiative that the European Capital of Culture is. In 2015 the Goethe-Institut and its partners in Bulgaria, i.e. Instituto Cervantes, Czech Center, Polish Institute, Institut Français, British Council and Austrian Embassy got also involved in the project and the scope of the CMA was extended - there were participants from all around Bulgaria and lecturers from Germany, Great Britain, the Czech Republic, Poland, Austria and France. The CMA has included so far lectures, workshops and seminars, additional (public) events and discussions, network meetings and learning journeys to Berlin and Warsaw.
After two successful editions of the CMA realised by the Goethe-Institut Bulgaria in partnership with Sofia Municipality (Sofia Development Association) and with regard to the achieved results and the effect on the local cultural scene, the Goethe-Instituts in Bucharest and Thessaloniki got also involved and decided to apply the good example in their cities as well. In 2017, the CMA has three branches - in Soﬁa, Bucharest and Thessaloniki. In each of the cities has been already formed a group of local participants who took part in an intensive 1-week-course in the respective city in June-July.
The international conference on cultural management in Sofia on 29th September is embedded into internal network meetings and working groups between the participants of the CMA. The main goal of the meetings is to stimulate cooperation and the development of joint projects, which can financed by the fund for projects of the Cultural Management Academy.
Created on Tuesday, 11 July 2017 07:25
SDA participates in an online discussion on the topic of "Smart City - A Platform for the Digital Economy organized by ICT Media: http://discussions.idg.bg/135
IDG.BG’s discussions are a new form of interactive communication. They are held in real time and address topical issues of interest to Bulgarian IT businesses and consumers. Svetlana Lomeva together with Velimir Milenkinsky, Todor Matev, Georgi Zhejev and Ventsislav Kozhuharov discuss topics such as: Sustainable development of different regions and the modern urban environment; Intelligent Urban Transport, Road and Communication Infrastructure; European experience and funding; Public-Private Partnership in Building a Sustainable Urban Environment; Surveillance as a means of prevention and as a timely response; Intelligent business based on innovation; Digital utility servers users; Smart applications as a means of improving the urban environment.
Created on Monday, 10 July 2017 14:05
The Cultural Management Academy 2017’s first course will take place from July 10th-15th in Sofia.
Goethe-Institut Bulgaria, Sofia Development Association, Sofia Municipality, Goethe-Institut Bucharest, Goethe-Institut Greece and Sofia University "St. Kliment Ohridski "will cooperate and work together in organizing the postgraduate program" Cultural Management Academy "2017.
The Cultural Management Academy is a postgraduate program that will be simultaneously held in Sofia, Thessaloniki and Bucharest in 2017 made up of three independent groups with participants and a shared online learning platform and training formats. Furthermore, there will be a meeting for all participants and a conference that will take place in Sofia.
The program includes a one-week intensive education course in Sofia with lectures, seminars, discussions and individual activities with Bulgarian and foreign cultural professionals as well as an online educational platform with individual and group assignments.
The program for the Cultural Management Academy’s first course, you can see HERE.