The ENCATC Congress celebrated its 30th anniversary

The ENCATC Congress on Cultural Management and Policy took place on 17‒19 October 2022 in Brussels and Antwerp. The Congress is an annual global get-together of researchers, educators, policymakers, and practitioners in the field of cultural management. Each year, participants gather together to explore challenges and opportunities in the industry and share advancements in research, pedagogy, and practice. This year Congress celebrated its 30th anniversary face-to-face, and the program was vibrant: keynote speeches, interactive debates, research presentations, panel discussions, workgroup sessions, and networking breaks.

Culture as a booster

The central theme of this year’s ENCATC Congress was internationalization, including strategic, theoretical, and management perspectives in research, education, policy, and practice. One of the Congress keynotes keywords was “going outside the bubble”, suggested by Barbara Gessler from Creative Europe to see the bigger picture, connect with other stakeholders, and develop a shared understanding when facing the global challenge of constant disruption (Gessler 2022).

Bernd Fesel from EIT Culture & Creativity picked up and expanded the topic by stating that globalization and internationalization of culture and creative industries require rethinking and reshaping. Culture is one of the drivers of combating climate change, busting innovation, and creating well-being, resilience, and social cohesion (Fesel 2022).

[Alt-teksti: Great hall, presentation and people listening.]
Image 1. The official opening of the 30th ENCATC Congress at the Fondation Universitaire, Brussels. (Image: Olga Bogdanova)

During the second half of the day, the Education and Research Session was held at the University of Antwerp on six parallel thematic tracks: internationalization, cultural networks, practices in cultural tourism, education, sustainable business models, and policy data. Over 30 presentations of research, project results, and teaching demonstrations were followed by lively discussions.

The second day of the Congress connected theory with practice: case studies were followed by panel discussions and open debates on cultural policies and sustainable practices in research. Finally, on the third day, the study visits around the theme of internationalization during the turbulent times were organized at Royal Museum for Central Africa, MigratieMuseumMigration, and Holland House in Brussels.

Presenting results of the EDUCRO project

Olga Bogdanova (LAB) and Juha Iso-Aho (Humak) presented the new online course Sustainable Value Creation in the Cultural Sector during the Education and Research Session (Image 2). The course has been developed as a result of a cross-border collaboration involving higher education institutions and companies from Finland and Russia in the frames of the EDUCRO project. (LAB 2022; Link 2)

Image 2. Presentation of the online course Sustainable Value Creation in the Cultural Sector during the Education and Research Session at the University of Antwerp. (Image: Petra Yli-Kovero)

The course creation activities followed the action research process and involved three phases: an online training program for professionals, a summer camp for students, and creating the course content based on the feedback of the target groups and benchmarking existing offerings. The theme of the course reflected the critical topics highlighted by the ENCATC congress: sustainable business models, digitalization, inclusion, and internationalization.


Olga Bogdanova works as an RDI specialist at LAB University of Applied Sciences and acts as a project manager at EDUCRO project.


Fesel, B. 2022. The challenges and opportunities of internationalization. Keynote presentation in ENCATC Congress. 17 Oct 2022.

Gessler, B. 2022. Opening remarks. Presentation in ENCATC Congress. 17 Oct 2022.

LAB. 2022. EDU – Creating new customer value through cross-border cooperation. Project. Cited 26 Oct 2022. Available at


Link 1. ENCATC Congress. 2022. The European network on cultural management and policy. Cited 26 Oct 2022. Available at

Link 2. EDUCRO project. 2022. Cited 26 Oct 2022. Available at