Newsletter N° 10 - May 2010

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Can cities learn to perceive cultural diversity not as a threat but as an opportunity? How can they make diversity work to their advantage? Can the city become the focus of collective identity bridging ethnic and religious identities? In the context of the Intercultural Cities programme several pilot cities will review their policies through the “intercultural lens” and develop intercultural strategies in order to meet the challenges of a world in motion.

Youth magazine 5+: Fostering Interculturalism and Benefiting from Linguistic Diversity

5+ is the first and only multilingual magazine in the Province of Vojvodina, Serbia, for secondary school students. The title itself means achieving above the best school grade – five. The articles in this monthly magazine are published in three languages Serbian, Hungarian and Croatian, and prepared by the secondary school students from Subotica who wish to practice journalism, write their own views and comments on various events and cultural happenings organised in the city and to discuss issues relevant to youth culture.

The project was launched in 2008, to promote cultural diversity and different linguistic identities in the local multicultural community. By writing about topics related to students’ everyday life and urban culture, this hard-working and successful team of students and teachers are contributing to improve intercultural understanding and promotion of learning the languages of the social environment. Knowing the languages in official use in a multicultural community such as Subotica, has become an asset or a real plus to the competencies required for their professional development and future careers. (more...)

Pilot cities

Berlin Neukölln (Germany)

Izhevsk (Russian Federation)

Lublin (Poland)

Lyon (France)

Melitopol (Ukraine)

Neuchâtel (Switzerland)

Oslo (Norway)

Patras (Greece)

Reggio Emilia (Italy)

Subotica (Serbia)

Tilburg (Netherlands)

Interview with Luca Cianfriglia, director of the Gate Project
Porta Palazzo

The "Gate Project" is a public- private development agency founded in order to create, foster and manage specific regeneration projects on the Area of Porta Palazzo in Turin. In this historical and intercultural neighbourhood there is the "Balon", one of the biggest flea markets in Europe, a traditional meeting point between migrants and the local community.

The first part of the Gate Project’s activity on the Balon area started on 1998 with the aim to redefine the position to be given to irregular street merchants into the local context, in an urban area characterised by noise, sale of counterfeit goods and a lack of security (pick pocketing of the residents and abuses of power amongst the sellers). In 2001 the Gate Project participated in the setting up of an empowering process engaging informal leaders, between the pitchmen, to form the Vivibalon Association with the aim to manage the activities of the sellers and to mediate conflicts at market. Each Saturday several merchants take the role of "Service Operators" to control the market. (read the interview...)

Museums are boring!

This is the tenor of many people, young and old, who were not introduced by parents, friends or even their schools to the rich experience museums can offer. That exhibitions are, in terms of themes and concepts, still often likely to address an exclusive minority is another fact in modern museum landscape. The publication "Museums as places for intercultural dialogue: selected practices from Europe" offers some ideas to counter this widespread tendency.


Twelve experts introduce the reader to a variety of innovative museum concepts from all over Europe, which have been developed in the course of the Places for Intercultural Dialogue (MAP for ID) initiative from December 2007 to November 2009, funded by the European Commission as part of the Grundtvig Lifelong Learning Programme. (more...)


Photo: Benedict Johnson © The Trustees of the British Museum

Barcelona, not yet a member but one of the club

On 27 January 2010 Barcelona City Council announced "Barcelona Intercultural Decalogue: A Strategy for Living in a city of diversity".

What are the three main objectives of this strategy? Firstly, it aims at defining and understanding dramatic rises in socio-cultural diversity in Barcelona. Secondly, it wants to seize the opportunities that present themselves through an increasingly diverse population. Thirdly, it strives to address the long term challenges posed by diversity and social cohesion. (more...)

Intercultural Cities Book available!

After two years of research and field work, the Intercultural cities programme published its findings in a book called "Intercultural cities – Towards a model for intercultural integration". The publication allows the reader to follow the process of developing a truly intercultural city step by step by outlining the main ideas and issues. (more...)

Lausanne Launches Intercultural Fund

On 26 August 2009 Lausanne City Council announced the mobilisation of 60,000 Swiss Francs (42,000 Euros) for an intercultural fund. This is by no means a large sum of money for a local authority. However, it represents a significant political and ideological step in the right direction.

The limited funding available requires a clear understanding of the selection criteria for funding each project. Crucially each scheme has to impact at least one cultural group, as well as the local Swiss inhabitants. It must also trigger debate and exchange on cultural similarities and differences between the city’s inhabitants. The initiative also needs to be innovative and achieve maximal impact on the local population. (more...)

Intercultural policies of the modern city

On 27-28 April, the Development Centre "Democracy through Culture" in Kyiv organised the round table "Intercultural policies of the modern city" to share the experiences of two cities participating in the Intercultural Cities programme, Lublin and Melitopol. Together with potential new network members, the Shevchenko district in Kyiv and other cities, perspectives for the programme and its future development were discussed.(more...)

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