Araf Ahmadali has been the director of the Department of Arts & Culture of the City of Amsterdam since February 2021, after being a policy advisor for this department for several years. Araf has a broad experience in making policies on international cultural affairs, funding, entrepreneurship and creative industries and a passion for creative (and digital) innovation and music production. Araf was in the lead to realize the first ‘Night vision’ of the City of Amsterdam; that calls for acknowledgement of night culture as a relevant artistic driver of Amsterdam and part of its cultural policy.
Unlocking the Transformative Power of Europe’s Cultural and Creative Sectors
Imagine how the cultural and creative sectors and industries could drive change in our cities and regions if the right policies and courage existed…
In this session, you’ll hear from ambassadors from various cities and regions who are tackling this topic head on. They’ll share what they’ve achieved so far and their bold ambitions.
This seminar marks the launch of the EIT Culture & Creativity Policy Club. You’ll find out what this new initiative is and how it plans to influence decision makers across the EU.
EIT Culture & Creativity is the ninth and newest EIT Knowledge and Innovation Community (KIC) launched in 2022. The EIT KICs are a set of multi-million euro European partnerships that focus on harnessing innovation towards different societal challenges. EIT Culture & Creativity’s mission is to strengthen and transform Europe’s Cultural and Creative Sectors and Industries (CCSI) by connecting creatives and organisations to Europe’s largest innovation network.
This event is a Seminar, where guests can attend presentations and panel discussions accompanied by lively audience interaction.
Speakers: Araf Ahmadali, Tommaso Sacchi, Carsten Brosda, Jordanka Assenova Fandakova, Fredrik Lindegren, Bernd Fesel
This session is organised in collaboration with EIT Culture & Creativity.
Get your festival ticket in our ticketshop. If you cannot be in Berlin with us in person, register here for free to watch the livestream of our mainstage programme.
Berlin, 10243 Germany
Tommaso Sacchi is Deputy Mayor for Culture in the City of Milan. He was Deputy Mayor for Culture, International Relations, Fashion and Design for the City of Florence (2019-2021).
From 2011 to 2013 he was Chief Advisor to the Department of Culture, Fashion and Design for the City of Milan and from 2014 to 2019 he was Chief of the Secretariat Culture Department for the City of Florence and curator of “Estate Fiorentina” for five editions (2015-
He was also Head of Communication and Public Relations at Stefano Boeri Architetti for whom he also directed the activities for the
inaugural communication of the Vertical Forest of Milan (Bosco Verticale).
Born in 1974 in Gelsenkirchen, married, two children.
• Newspaper traineeship with the Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung in Essen
• Journalism and political science studies at the University of Dortmund; PhD on “discursive journalism” in Dortmund University’s faculty of cultural studies
• 2000 – 2005: press officer and editor, later speechwriter and policy officer for the SPD party executive
• 2005 – 2009: head of the speeches, text and analysis unit at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
• 2008 – 2009: deputy head of the management and planning staff at the Federal Ministry of Labour and Social Affairs
• 2010 – 2011: head of the SPD party executive’s communication department
• June 2011 – February 2016: head of the media office in Hamburg’s Senate Chancellery, from 2013 additionally the Senate’s authorised media representative
• March 2016 – January 2017: State Secretary in the Ministry of Culture; State Secretary in the Senate Chancellery for the media and digitisation sectors
• Minister of Culture and Media and Head of the Ministry since February 2017
• Co-Chairperson of the Commission for Media and Network Politics of the SPD Party Executive Committee since July 2018
• Chairman of the culture forum of the social democracy since November 2019
• President of the German Theatre and Orchestra Association “Deutscher Bühnenverein” since November 2020
The mayor of the capital of Bulgaria – Sofia, Yordanka Fandakova was born on 12.04.1962. She graduated from Sofia University “St. Kliment Ohridski” with a degree in Russian Philology. From 1985 to 1995 she was a teacher at High School 73 Vladislav Gramatik – Sofia. In 1998 she became principal at the school. In the period of 2005 to 2009 she was Deputy Mayor of Sofia Municipality in charge of education, culture, sport and prevention of addictions. In 2009 she became a member of the 41st National Assembly, and later on Minister of Education, Youth and Science. On 23rd November 2009 she was elected as mayor of Sofia. She won the elections in 2011 and later again in 2015. In November 2019 Fandakova was granted a forth consecutive term, having won the local vote in the second round. She speaks English and Russian.
Bernd Fesel studied Economics and Philosophy in Heidelberg and Bonn and graduated with an economist degree. He is visiting professor at the University of Bonn, University of Arts Berlin and currently at the Institute for Culture and Media Management, KMM Hamburg. In 1990 he started his career in the art market, becoming 1997 Managing Director of the German and then the European Gallery Association. He also served as speaker of the German Arts Council.
In 2003 he founded the Office for Culture and Economy and served as advisor f.e. of the German UNESCO Commission and German Federal Foreign Office. He initiated the first national conference on creative industries in Berlin from 2004 to 2009, which was co-organized with the Friedrich-Naumann-Foundation. Then he served as vice director at the European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010, since 2011 as senior advisor at the European Centre for Creative Economy, www.e-c-c-e.com – a legacy of RUHR.2010.
Bernd Fesel has been speaker in Hearings of the European Parliament (2017 on Brexit) and conferences across Europe, special focus is on the spillover effects of the arts and creative industries. He initiated and leads the European Research Partnership on Cultural Creative Spillovers. www.ccspillovers.wikispaces.com
He was board member of the European network on cultural management and policy (ENCATC) in Brussels from 2015 to 2017 and is since 2016 director of the European Creative Business Network (ECBN) in Rotterdam. He is part of the Erasmus+ project on Co.Creation: www.cocreate.training
Fredrik Lindegren is working as head of Culture affairs in the City of Umeå, Sweden. He was originally hired 2006 by the municipality to work with the bid for becoming European Capital of Culture and then appointed Artistic Director for the upcoming ECoC year 2014. Mr. Lindegren has a background as stage actor, artist and director. Fredrik is also running a cultural art venue in Umeå under the name The Artistic Bureaucracy – @Bureaucart. He is a board member for the upcoming European Capital of Culture in Bodø2024, Norway.