“Networks of Austrian Cultural Foreign Policy: Alive and Creative”

“Networks of Austrian Cultural Foreign Policy: Alive and Creative”

Austria continues to build its reputation in the world as an innovative and creative cultural nation that is very much alive. This reputation is in no small part due to Austrian film in its manifold aspects. Both nationally and internationally, people are becoming increasingly aware of the productivity and diversity of present-day Austrian filmmaking. Although Austrian short films can be considered a genre of their own, they are also an excellent example for the breadth of local filmmaking. The scope of our international cultural policy is equally broad, in keeping with its objective to demonstrate Austria’s cultural dynamics. 

This is why I am particularly pleased that starting next year we will have the opportunity to present a series of outstanding Austrian short films in cooperation with the Austrian Film Academy. The Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs consists of a network of ninety-six Cultural Forums, Embassies, and Consulate Generals active in the cultural sector and committed to bringing Austrian culture to the world. In 2011, they were responsible for organizing a total of 5,300 events in nearly 110 countries and 800 cities, attracting a total of more than 6.4 million visitors worldwide. Clearly, international culture plays a pivotal role in defining Austria’s image and positioning in the world. The idea is to take advantage of this worldwide cultural network as a means to once again attract attention to Austrian film.

Our representative offices and cultural forums abroad initiate and support various film events as part of their cultural mission. The range spans from organizing Austrian film days and film weeks to participating in EU film festivals and providing logistical and financial support for Austrian films participating in international film festivals in other countries.

By drawing on our lively and stable networks in the cultural sector and pooling our resources, together we are continuing to expand Austria’s reputation as a cultural nation while demonstrating that there are always new things to discover.

In closing, I would like to thank Karl Markovics and the Austrian Film Academy once again for making this joint project a reality and bringing Austrian short films to people all over the world.

Ambassador Dr. Martin Eichtinger

Head of the Cultural Policy Section

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