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Festivals for Development

By Mariam Chanishvili
Friday, March 16
British Council in Georgia and the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports of Adjara Autonomous Republic jointly organized “Festivals for Development” International Conference in Batumi on 14 March 2018.

The event was attended by international festivals experts and senior British local government officers as well as Local Government authorities and festivals organizers.

They had a chance to discuss the importance and contribution of festivals in the cultural, the innovative models of collaboration between the festivals, social and economic development and their role in the development of creative and cultural industries.

The most successful Georgian festivals were also presented during the conference.

The history of establishing and experience of the Edinburgh Festivals and other British festival cities as well as the City of Edinburgh Council as an initiator of developing collaboration between different festivals was presented.

The UK speakers shared the best cases and innovative models of collaboration between the British Festivals such as Edinburgh Festivals, Edinburgh Fringe, Brighton Festival and Gloucester Festival.

“We strongly believe that the International conference will become a contribution to the task of turning Adjara and especially Batumi into the international festivals hub,” was stated by the British Council.

In partnership with the Ministry of Education, Culture and Sports of the Autonomous Republic of Adjara in Georgia, the professional development project was organized aimed at the improvement of the festivals management in Adjara. Representatives of the Festivals and Events International (FEI ) lead trainings on the how to plan and organize festivals as well as how to develop a festival's marketing plan.

The training program was created on the basis of the research, workshops and face to face meetings with the representatives of the festival sector in Adjara carried out by Nick Dodds, the expert from the UK.

“I hope this day will inspire you to develop festivals in Georgia, here in Batumi and over the whole country. We hope to play a small part in the process of festivals and governments collaborating to make things happen here in Georgia,” said Dodds.

Nick was Chief Executive of Brighton Dome, Administrative Director of Edinburgh International Festival and in 2012 completed an assignment to LOCOG as chief operating officer helping to deliver the Cultural Olympiad and the London 2012 Festival – the largest UK-wide festival ever staged.

With nearly 30 years involvement in all aspects of events, festivals and venues in both the commercial and public sectors, Nick’s particular areas of experience are organizational development and business planning, commercial strategies and fundraising, venue management, outdoor events and production.

The conference live stream was available on British Council Georgia Facebook and YouTube Channels.

The British Council is the UK’s leading international organization for educational opportunities and cultural relations. It operates in more than 100 countries worldwide. The British Council builds relationships and understanding between people in Britain and other countries to increase trust between the nations and appreciation of the UK’s ideas and achievements overseas.