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What to expect from the Culture team in 2020

We're still here! If you’ve seen our Brexit update from 31 January, you’ll know that although the UK has left the EU, the UK is still in Creative Europe until December 2020 (and possibly beyond). The Creative Europe Desk UK team is still nudging people about EU funding opportunities and European partnerships, and Kate Deans, our Culture sub-programme specialist in Scotland, has put together this long-read guide to show what’s in store for 2020...

UK Participation in Creative Europe

“As guaranteed by the Withdrawal Agreement, UK organisations can continue to apply for Creative Europe funding opportunities until the current programme ends in December 2020.

UK organisations remain fully eligible for Creative Europe funding opportunities until 31 December 2020, and when selected will receive funding for the entire duration of their projects, even if these run beyond 2020. This also applies to projects currently in progress.”

This also applies to other EU funding programmes like Erasmus Plus, Europe for Citizens, Interreg and Horizon 2020. More information on this, and the post 2020 situation is available, as usual, on our Creative Europe Desk UK Brexit developments page.

So, to celebrate a full year of still being part of the Creative Europe programme, we wanted to highlight the full range of opportunities and activity that are coming up in 2020. Note that most of this information is drawn from the Creative Europe 2020 Work Programme

First up, which opportunities are already ‘live’ for 2020?

Current open calls

  • Part of the music sector?
    We have two calls open under Music Moves Europe currently, a pilot Co-creation and Co-production call closing on 30 March, and a pilot Music Education & Learning call with a deadline of 6 April. You can also read our colleague Rosie Le Garsmeur's handy overview on what Music Moves Europe is all about
  • Looking to fund the translation, production, promotion and distribution of European fiction works?
    We’re expecting this year’s Literary Translation call, opening any day now, to have a deadline of 5 May
  • Got an innovative cross-sector idea for better connecting cultural and audiovisual work through digital technology?
    Explore this pilot call closing on 14 May
  • Looking for screen or video games opportunities? As usual, you can find more details on Creative Europe's MEDIA sub-programme here, including training schemes and markets

Other relevant EU funding programmes

  • If you have plans with your European partners around vocational training, adult education, or working with young people, Erasmus Plus might be for you! 
    Erasmus Plus is a lifelong learning programme. You can read about upcoming Erasmus Plus deadlines for vocational training, adult education, and youth on the UK contact point website, co-managed by Ecorys and British Council, with a key deadline for Strategic Partnerships on 24 March, and further deadlines specifically for Youth on 30 April and 1 October.
  • A lesser-known EU funding programme worth exploring...
    Europe for Citizens has calls for Networks of Towns on 3 March; and for Civil Society Projects, Town Twinning and Networks of Towns on 1 September. There is no UK contact point for this programme, but the Irish contact point has plenty of useful information in English.

What else is the European Commission planning this year?

Recurring Creative Europe actions and work

  • This year the European Capitals of Culture are Rijeka and Galway, so expect lots of European conferences, networks and meetings to be taking place in those two cities.
  • The usual EU prizes in specific fields will be announced in 2020: EU prize for cultural heritage (European Heritage Awards); EU Prize for Popular and Contemporary Music (Music Moves Europe Talent Awards); and the EU Prize for contemporary architecture.
  • European Heritage Days will again be taking place across Europe, in the UK these are ‘Doors Open Days’, happening in September
  • Following on from the European Year of Cultural Heritage in 2018 some budget has been set aside for peer-learning activities
  • Ongoing dialogue on a European level with sectors
    Voices of Culture are discussions within the sector initiated by the European Commission around certain themes. The most recent was around non-urban areas and the role of culture. You can read more about current and past themes and reports, including around gender equality on the Voices of Culture website.

Getting ready for the future Creative Europe programme (2021 – 2027) with dialogue, activity and pilot schemes

  • Grants for the mobility of individual artists and other cultural professionals?
    i-Portunus will have more Calls in 2020, with 2 tenders for the management of these funds due to be awarded to organisations soon
  • Grants for the mobility of makers?
    Likewise, the Makers Mobility Call tender was awarded to the European Creative Hubs Network, so we should be expecting opportunities for makers to travel across Europe and the world soon through this scheme
  • Music Moves Europe dialogue continues
    With Music Moves Europe pilot calls entering their second year, and learnings comes in from the first rounds of projects, there will continue to be discussion as the European Commission looks at potentially establishing a music-specific set of funding calls in the future programme, as well as a Music Observatory and the publication of a European Music Export Strategy
  • Stay tuned for a European Theatre Forum in 2020
    Along the lines of work already conducted with the music sector under ‘Music Moves Europe’, the European Commission is looking to have dialogue with the theatre sector towards establishing possibilities for theatre-focused schemes on a European level. There will be a tender coming out to award funds to an organisation to organise the forum as a first step of this discussion with the sector.
  • Piloting a travelling arts fund
    Parallel to the work being done for individual mobility around i-Portunus, there are plans to try out a pilot scheme around the cross-border circulation of performing arts works (plays, dance producations, circus, street art, excluding music). First step coming up is mapping existing support schemes, and the design and testing of a ‘Travelling Arts Fund’.

What about beyond 2020?

The next Creative Europe programme runs from 2021 to 2027, with Calls expected to open towards the end of this year once the overall 7-year EU budget (Multiannual Financial Framework/MFF, as it’s called) is approved by member states. Read Culture Action Europe’s MFF newsletter special for an excellent summary of the process so far, and where next. The future programme has proposals for an increase in funding; a European observatory for the cultural and creative sectors; further sector-specific opportunities in music, heritage, literature & publishing, and architecture & design; a full-blown fund for mobility of individuals artists and other cultural professionals; support for creative innovation labs; support for innovative storytelling; and new activity targeting media literacy and quality journalism.

Following the publication of the UK Government’s EU negotiation mandate on 27 February 2020, the UK will not be seeking to participate in the next Creative Europe programme, due to start in January 2021. 

What is the team up to?

Sign up to our newsletter and keep an eye on our events listings for updates of where the Creative Europe Desk UK team will be throughout 2020. We’ll be attending events; speaking at conferences; chairing panels; highlighting inspirational speakers; and generally making sure that we’re out and about and available to chat about 2020 and the future. So please get in touch if you’d like us to speak at any upcoming events!

Keep following our social media channels and newsletters to hear more about what current Creative Europe projects and European networks are up to this year as well. 

Stay in touch!

Your Creative Europe Desk UK Culture team


With thanks to Kate Deans from Creative Europe Desk UK – Scotland for pulling together this overview of what’s to come in 2020!