The Grand Year for Europe’s Cultural Heritage Opens in Milan

One shared goal, hundreds of innovative projects, and thousands of activities will bring millions of Europeans together to celebrate European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018!

The grand year will officially launch next week at the European Culture Forum 2017 in Milan. Taking place between 7-9 December, the event will open the much-anticipated celebrations and present the key topics of this pan-European initiative.

Meanings and values of Europe’s magnificent heritage will be put in the spotlight through a series of speeches, debates, and presentations. Key topics will include the potential of culture to tackle European and global challenges, the meanings of heritage for citizens, as well as the ways in which culture in cities and regions can help shape more cohesive and inclusive societies.

In addition to this, heritage will be discussed in relation to refugees, civic society, and the modern city. With respect to these themes, representatives of Europe’s cultural and creative sectors will converse about heritage as “the fabric of our lives and societies” and an invaluable asset for building stronger, more prosperous societies.

The opening address will be delivered by Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, who will highlight the significance of European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018. Together with experts such as Indrek Saar, Minister of Culture of Estonia, Dario Franceschini, Minister of Cultural Heritage and Activities and Tourism of Italy, Antonio Tajani, President of the European Parliament, and many others, he will unlock the celebrations.   

In its most recent public address on the topic, Navracsics pointed out:

“Our cultural heritage is more than the memory of our past; it is the key to our future. A European Year of Cultural Heritage will be an opportunity to raise awareness of the social and economic importance of cultural heritage and to promote European excellence in the sector.”

With these words, the Commissioner reminds of the vital role the heritage plays in the economic and cultural development of our society. As a shared resource of all Europeans, heritage is an essential communal asset that does not only speak about our common past, but also opens the door to a prosperous future.

The event in Milan will be only an interlude to all the different aspects of heritage that will be explored during European Year of Cultural Heritage. The initiative will give a chance to all Europeans to participate in the widest variety of activities to explore, discuss, and interpret heritage.

The full programme of the opening event and the schedule of sessions can be found on the official website of the European Culture Forum.