AVIGNON.- The Forum dAvignon is an independent, international think tank that aims to break down the barriers between culture and the economy and propose new ideas and solutions at global, European and local levels. Founded in 2008 and supported by over 30 partners and sponsors, it brings together some 450 leading figures from major international private companies and the public sector as well as, among others, artists, architects, philosophers, musicians and students. The fifth edition of the Forum will be held in the Palais des Papes in the southern French city of Avignon from 15 to 17 November 2012. The theme will be Culture: reasons to hope Imagining and passing on. It will examine and highlight the positive links between culture, the economy and the media the linchpins of the knowledge economy including their roles in creating social cohesion and jobs. Amid troubled times, it aims to provide optimistic messages for the future.
A series of groundbreaking reports will be published at the Forum by leading global companies including Ernst & Young, Bain & Company and LAtelier BNP Paribas, all of which are study partners of the Forum dAvignon. Subjects will include how new technology is changing the way that we produce and pass on our cultural heritage, how culture and creative imagination provide hope for the future and the recent evolution of product launches in culture and the media. The Forum is also drawing up a series of proposals to stimulate public debate, one of which will be entitled Creativity in financing culture.
The participants in the Forum dAvignon in 2011 included 300 decision makers from the public and private sectors and 60 artists while some 40 different countries were represented. Smaller meetings to exchange ideas are also held during the year. Those who take part are in no doubt about its value. The Forum dAvignon is a unique platform for meetings, discussions, analysis and appreciation regarding culture, economy and the business world, says Amit Khanna, Chief Executive Officer of Reliance Entertainment, India, part of a group with significant interests in films, broadcasting and new media ventures. Culture is the foundation of human civilisation and the ignition key for developing growth in the interconnected digital world. Culture generates hope for the future. Carlo dAsaro Biondo, President Operations for Google in Southern and Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Africa, adds: The Forum dAvignon is a space for dialogue between three universes which are learning to approach each other and understand each other, which is what makes it an unmissable meeting. Véronique Morali, Chairman of Fimalac Développement in France, founder of the website Terrafemina, believes: The greatest achievement of the Forum dAvignon is bringing together worlds which otherwise live as opposites, antagonists, not understanding each other.
The Forum dAvignon Prize
In 2011 the Forum dAvignon created a prize to develop its relationship with universities, foundations, institutions and firms which embrace cultural innovation. It aims to encourage innovative, cross-sector, educational projects. The winner in 2011 was the network of ArtScience Labs, a concept developed by the Harvard professor David Edwards, which approaches art and science as the same aesthetic and analytical process. The 2012 Prize will be awarded at the end of the year.