UNESCO ResiliArt Webinar: International Festivals and Policy in light of COVID-19



Date: July 28th

Time: Adelaide, 21:30 | Singapore, 20:00 | Krakow, 14:00 | Edinburgh, 13:00 | Montreal, 8:00

Duration: 1 hour, 15 minutes

Title: International Festivals and Policy in light of COVID-19 (Register here!)


Description: The first half of 2020 has seen the COVID-19 pandemic pose a myriad of major hurdles for cities around the world. The creative economy has been especially devastated, with millions of artists, arts companies, cultural organisations affected and the global culture value chain severely disrupted. The festival sector, like the entire live performance industry, has taken a particularly hard hit. While many national and local governments have put in place measures to alleviate the effects of the crisis on festivals and their broader ecosystems, the longer-term policy implications and interventions are not yet clear. Panellists will discuss ways in which local and national governments can develop policies that support the recovery and health of the festival sector moving forward.


Topics for discussion:

  • What policy supports can be put into place by national and local governments to bolster long-term viability of the festival sector and its related ecosystems in light of Covid-19? How can we improve the financial and organisational resilience of arts and cultural festivals? 
  • The Sustainable Development Goals cut across policy areas critical for the growth and development of people and the planet. To date, how has the global festivals sector contributed to the SDGs, and in light of these global changes, how will the sector continue to engage with these global priorities?



  • Mr Low Eng Teong, Deputy Chief Executive Officer (Sector Development), National Arts Council, Singapore
  • Professor Susan Deacon CBE, Chair of the Edinburgh Festivals Forum and Scottish public figure: former Member of Scottish Parliament and Health Minister now with a portfolio of roles in higher education, business, the public and third sectors.
  • Mr Pawel Potoroczyn,  Diplomat and culture manager, film and music producer, publisher. Director of the Adam Mickiewicz Institute in Warsaw from 2008 to 2016.
  • Mr Douglas Gautier AM, Douglas Gautier, CEO and Artistic Director of the Adelaide Festival Centre. Chair of the Asia Pacific Performing Arts Centre and Director of the Asia Pacific Centre for Arts and Cultural Leadership. Formerly the Director of the Hong Kong Arts Festival Society.

Moderated by: Hiroko Tsuboi, Senior Policy Researcher at the Cabinet Office of the Government of Japan. UNESCO Expert Facility member, 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions.