LIKE, a first review by Michaël Moglia!
Monday 29 February 2016

February is already getting to its end and it is now time to review the first two months of 2016 and LIKE activity. New year, new visual identity : because "Les Rencontres" has become "LIKE", we launched a new, clearer, more functional and more interactive website. It has been a true success so far ! Beyond our e-communication, our whole communication supports have evolved. Our new logo can be found on all our tools : the newsletter, our letterhead paper, our flyers…

As this first step was successfully managed and passed, we went to Sarajevo light-heartedly in order to organise our first Rendez-Vous of the year. This meeting was the first of its kind for our network and a complete success, both qualitatively and quantitatively ! The decisions taken during the Board meeting on Ferbuary,2, the active participation of our members and local partners, but also the participants and the relevance of their interventions contributed to the quality of the event. Quantitatively, LIKE got bigger with four new memberships: I welcome the cities of Sarajevo, Maglaj, Doboj and Samac in our network. We are happy to count them in for the months and years to come. On behalf of all members, I would also like to warmly thank Donato Giuliani, Director of the French Institute in Bosnia-Herzegovina and Cultural Cooperation and Action Councellor of the French Embassy, Her Excellency Mrs Claire Bodonyi, Embassadress of France in Bosnia-herzegovina, and Sinisa Sesum, Head of UNESCO Sarajevo Antenna. We owe them a lot for the success of this Rendez-Vous!

In order to develop our future projects, the team of LIKE also grew in these past few weeks. Since early February, Bénédicte Rident has joined us, working towards the development of our network as our Project Manager, and a few days ago Victor Pilven and Margaux Rouchet (both civic service contracts) have also joined us for a 6-month period. Together with Francesco Morelli and Catherine Pomar, they all work towards the organisation of our next events and the implementation of the decisions that were taken during our Lille General Assembly. There many of them: I will only quote a few of them now, but I will discuss further in a next newsletter.

  • Firstly, the Charter of Values that was decided in Milan is on its tracks ! On our website, you will find a detailed article on the process of its elaboration. Presided by our colleague Jaako Masonen, Director of Cultural Affairs of Tampere, Finland, the working group that has been implemented will be presenting its work during our Rendez-vous in Bordeaux in June, before having it voted in San Sebastian in October.
  • Secondly, the creation of a LIKE Prize. After an open call for application and the debate of a jury, our network of European Cities and Regions for Culture will award a special prize to honour an innovative initiative. What will it reward, and how ? Stay tuned to our next newsletters for further details !
  • Lastly, a few words about our willingness to reconvene with the European Union for political as well as financial follow-up. Assisted by Ytes Cabinet and the Regional Council of Nord-Pas-de-Calais-Picardie, our network is setting up a project to be funded under European Commission's Europe Creative programme. The months to come are therefore going to be laborious, but this appears to be an unmistakable opportunity for LIKE to reinforce as an actor of culture in Europe. We are counting on your interest and your active participation !

Our colleagues, members of the Board, the whole lot of our members are all working on a daily basis to develop LIKE and make our network the privileged platform for debate and action. This load of work is resting on the members of the team, and the deadlines imposed by the assembling of our European project render it impossible to organise our Rendez-Vous in Cologne in due time. Initially set to be taking place at the end of March, this will be postponed to next year. I want to express Cologne all my gratitude for their benevolence and ensure that we will be back in this great German city at some point.