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ArtNexus represents the first attempt in Sweden to synergize development cooperation and cultural policy areas through this modality.

ArtNexus is the first collaboration between Sida and the Swedish Arts Grants Committee, Konstnärsnämnden, to help improve democratisation processes in partner countries by targeting the art and culture sector.
Marking also the first cultural collaboration between Sweden and Albania, through the launch of ArtNexus on 21 October 2021, the Swedish Ambassador Elsa Håstad, invited the Minister of Culture Elva Margariti and representatives from the art community to dinner at her residency.
Thanks to Sida funding, ArtNexus will run over a 3-year period in select partner countries, including Albania, the programme’s first partner country.
ArtNexus merges micro- and macrolevel activities, by building art- and culture practitioner capacities through workshops and exchanges, as well as help to strengthen public institutions and policy making in the culture sector.  In this way, the separate mandate areas of the Committee and Sida are fulfilled and merged, and a holistic and sustainable engagement and programme impact is better secured in the partner countries.
A wide range of Swedish state and non-state sector specific and other technical experts will serve as the programme reference group, as follows: the Swedish International Development Agency (Sida), the Swedish Film Institute, the National Touring Theatre, Swedish PEN, Swedish Artists’ Association, Academy of Music and Drama and Valand Academy of Art and Design at Gothenburg University, Music Alliance, Swedish Intellectual Property Office, Public Art Agency Sweden, Unga Klara, Swedish UNESCO Council and the Swedish Cultural Attaché to Turkey.
The reference group will advise programme implementation as needed and contribute to its capacity building pillar alongside other selected Swedish and international partners.
Swedish embassies will represent, advise, and follow the programme at country level.

Design of ArtNexus
ArtNexus has been designed by the Swedish Arts Grants Committee in consultation with Sida, based on the direct feedback from partner country art- and culture practitioners and Ministry of Culture during one full year (2020). Due to the pandemic no country visits could be undertaken during the design phase, however a series of nationwide Zoom consultations and a comprehensive survey were carried out. The underlying principle has been to develop a demand-based programme, to avoid the traditional pitfall of imposing donor country set models onto the recipient country without due respect to contextual differences. Therefore, we have and will pursue continuous dialogue with our national stakeholders during programme implementation. Implementation will be carried out through partner country staff and consultants to the extent possible.

Program activities
During the first programme year, a few key activities will dominate the agenda, including gap narrowing conversations between art- and culture practitioners and state representatives during two planned dialogue meetings (fall 2021 and spring 2022 in Albania). Secondly, capacity building activities will be carried out with the help of our Swedish partners, catering to the expressed needs of our partner country stakeholders. It is also our ambition that subject specific studies will be carried out by external experts to help improve evidence-based approach to policy making in the culture sector.

Opportunities and Challenges
ArtNexus holds the potential to produce some measurable impact, in terms of raised awareness and knowledge of a few key issues in our partner countries, bring about improved partnerships between Swedish and partner country art and culture institutions and of course generate new opportunities for partner country artists to improve their international presence (through for instance ArtNexus stipends and residencies). If these measurable impacts would materialise, the programme could be extended to 5 years, and where applicable, an added regional dimension.
The programme has the potential of being replicated globally to different partner countries as well as to inspire other donor to invest more substantially in cultural exchanges. We would ideally see other EU countries support different programme modalities.
There are a few key and important challenges to bear in mind, consisting of lacking engagement and participation from partner country stakeholders, continued deep mistrust in state actors, poor convergence between the ArtNexus offered capacity building training and needs, and finally poor follow-through and a failure to extract lessons learned and make needed adjustments throughout programme implementation cycle.
It is therefore important that we anchor the programme at national levels to optimize engagement and participation both from sector specific practitioners and state institutions. If so, it is our belief that challenges aside, the opportunities and potential of ArtNexus are manyfold.

For more information, please contact:
Neda Mansouri Executive Manager ArtNexus
neda.mansouri@konstnarsnamnden.se +46(0)707582162


Uppdaterad: 2021-11-17 Tipsa om sidan

ArtNexus är ett treårigt program - i samarbete mellan Konstnärsnämnden och Sida - som ska utforska möjligheterna att skapa synergier mellan kultur- och biståndspolitiska mål.

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