Europeana 2021 call for proposals

At Europeana 2021, we want to explore with you how we can support a sustainable, responsible and inspiring cultural heritage sector for today and tomorrow.

On this page you can find all the information you need to submit a proposal for an interactive and engaging talk, event, workshop, session or intervention to be held during our digital conference, Europeana 2021 on 10, 11 & 12 November 2021. Proposals can be for sessions ranging anything from 5 minutes to 45 minutes.

The deadline for proposals closed on 12 September 2021, 23:59 CEST.


Diversity & Inclusion: Cultural heritage empowers society to embrace its diversity and flourish. We are looking for proposals related to any aspect of diversity and inclusion. This could be around access, reinterpreting or reimagining practices and discourses, or looking at the ways people work and operate individually, within our organisations and as a sector. We are interested in how we can collectively ensure our communities are equitable and everyone feels safe, welcome, represented and equal. 

Participation: Participation in and engagement with culture creates value in our sector and society at large. We want everyone to have the opportunity to participate in digital cultural heritage - to access it, to share it, to enjoy it, contribute to it and be enriched by it. We are looking for proposals that help engender participation. This could be by supporting others to develop opportunities to participate and integrate participatory activities into products and services. We’re looking for proposals that cover participatory practices, standards, platforms, tools and more. 

Collaboration: Collaboration is vital in addressing the cultural heritage sector’s vulnerabilities and challenges. Greater collaborative practices can progress our sector’s digital transformation, which in turn can enable further collaborative opportunities. We’re looking for proposals that support collaborations for a European cultural sector which places digital cultural heritage at the heart of society. We’d love to hear from you if you have imaginative, engaging or new ways to connect people or organisations, build partnerships, engage audiences and network from within or even outside the sector.

Digital Public Sphere and Data Spaces: The Europeana Initiative is positioned at the heart of a data space for cultural heritage in the new plans of the European Commission. We want that space to be part of a vibrant digital public sphere where everyone can interact with trustworthy, reliable information and enjoy discussions and interactions which are respectful and free of harassment and exploitation. This idea is very closely linked to the foundations on which Europeana is built and the values we hold. And it’s also closely linked to the European Commission’s New European Bauhaus movement which aims to shape future ways of living that answer the wider challenges we face today. Digital cultural heritage can play an important role in this initiative, and in shaping the heritage of tomorrow. We’re looking for proposals in this area to share and showcase how the digital transformation of our sector contributes to such a thriving public digital space, to sustainability, accessibility, and inclusivity, and to help ensure that culture is always represented in discussions on the development of policies and programmes linked to digital public spaces.

Climate Action: There is a global climate emergency and digital has a carbon footprint too. We’re looking for proposals that support and contribute to the European Green Deal and New European Bauhaus, creating a greener, more sustainable society. We want to hear about innovative and new ways we can work together to tackle and raise awareness of the climate emergency. The proposals could cover individual actions we can all take to ‘green-up’ our practices, or activities that organisations can carry out to proactively make a positive difference. If it covers how we can individually and collectively reduce the impact the digital cultural heritage sector has on climate change, we want to hear from you!


Submit your proposal by completing this form. Please read through the information about the submission process below. 

Pitch video

In addition to the application form, we encourage everyone to prepare a short video of 45 to 90 seconds to pitch their proposal. We are not asking for anything highly polished - even a video shot on your phone will do. See our colleague Sebastiaan's example video he shot in his garden in 2020.

Timetable and process


The Call for proposals for the Europeana 2021 conference is open from 14 July - 12 September 2021 23:59 CEST. Proposals can only be submitted through the proposal form above.

The selection process will begin when the call for proposals opens . We will review proposals in order of submission.

First notice 

You will receive a first notice mid September 2021 if your proposal meets the conditions to be taken into account for final selection. 

Final notice

You will get a final notice if your proposal has been selected by mid October 2021. We will provide brief feedback on proposals which are not selected.

Training and checks

Organisers of selected proposals will receive a short voluntary training session and will be asked to participate in a mandatory technical check on Friday 5 or Monday 8 November 2021. 

Withdrawing a proposal

If you have questions, doubts or you want to withdraw your proposal, for whatever reason, please contact our events team (

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There are numerous ways to facilitate interaction in an online event. The examples below are not a list of options that you have to choose from, but are intended to help you think of ways to maximise the impact of your contribution to Europeana 2021.

The main criteria for choosing a format is the impact you want to make with your contribution. Do you want participants to learn something from you? Do you want to learn from them? Do you want to raise the profile of a certain topic by encouraging discussions? Do you want participants to experience a thought process? Etc.


Workshops can be held in: 

  1. Large groups, where participants are asked to do assignments individually, or 

  2. Smaller groups, where participants are asked to do assignments together. The best way to support smaller groups is to have a facilitator for each group to guide them through the exercise(s).


The main questions for discussions are how many people will be talking (or might want to talk) and how big the audience is. A moderated panel discussion is best suited for situations where only a small number of people will be talking most of the time and a large audience is listening. The audience can raise their hand to ask a question live or questions can be asked through Q&A and/or chat functionality. The moderator is then also responsible for bringing these questions to the table. 

Roundtable discussions are better suited if you want to give everyone the option to speak up. These can take place by dividing the participants into smaller groups. A moderator for each group is advisable during online events, as just putting people into a breakout room will not necessarily spark a conversation. Ensure that participants know what they should discuss, for example by sending them a link to a slidedeck, document, or survey. Make sure that you’ve thought about the way the results of the discussions are captured before you ask people to go into break out rooms. Presenting outcomes of each group might sound like a good idea, but online events allow for much better, faster and more insightful ways of giving feedback. For example: a survey within each group and/or a survey when everyone is back from their discussion.

Roundtables can have many variations. ‘Magic roundtables’ are where people determine the topics first and divide how much time they’ll spend on each topic before actually starting the discussion. This variation needs a (self appointed) time keeper. 


Presentations might not sound like a very interactive format, but when done in a different way, they can encourage participation.. We have had good experiences based on “flipping the classroom”, where a presentation is pre-recorded and the time (that would normally be used for the presentation) is used for interaction. Other options are to stream your recording and interact live with your audience through a chat functionality. The chat can also be used for the audience to interact with each other.

Tools for interaction

Below is a list of tools that can be used for interaction with participants. Do you have your own favorite tool? Let us know. We love to get to know new tools. We will also need to evaluate whether it will be practical and possible to use the tool for Europeana 2021.

Polling and quizzes: Mentimeter and Kahoot

Polling and quizzes are ideal ways of interacting with larger audiences. The questions can quickly be answered and answers can be shared instantly. Examples of polling and quiz tools that we have good experiences with are Mentimeter and Kahoot.

Collaborative note taking (Google Docs/EtherPad)

Google Docs and EtherPads are ideal for collaboratively note taking during sessions. You can prepare the documents/pads for the session by adding headers and/or essential questions that need to be discussed and/or answered during the session. Make sure to prepare a separate document for each group/break out room. This way participants do not need to scroll through several pages or run the risk to be working in the wrong location. The documents can be left open to the public after the event, though we suggest restricting editing rights to “make suggestions” of “commenting” to preserve the information that has been collected. 

Surveys (Google Forms)

Surveys can offer a structured way of gathering input from your participants. Each participant can use a survey individually or, in smaller groups, a notetaker is appointed. The notetaker can be a facilitator or one of the participants.


Brainstorming with a group can easily be done online. Tools like Jamboard and Trello make it possible to quickly get people to add their thoughts on a canvas. Want a more structured approach? Then look into online mindmapping tools, like Miro and MindMeister.

Selection Committee

Our selection committee is representative of the Europeana Initiative. The committee consists of members of Europeana Foundation, Europeana Members Council, Europeana Aggregators’ Forum, members of our six communities, from our New Professionals Task Force and Diversity and Inclusion Basecamp forum.

Our selection criteria is designed to enable a broad and diverse selection, considering actions we support such as No Women No Panel. In order to open up the conference to new voices, we want to facilitate a more inclusive and equitable call, and on the submission form applicants have the opportunity to tell us how we can support your proposal if it is selected. The submissions will go through the initial selection process without this information being seen, and the final decision will be made by the programme committee.

You can see members of the Selection Committee, who will meet regularly, below.

The Programme Committee

The Programme Committee's main goal is to make sure the program for the Europeana 2021 conference is welcoming, represented by speakers appropriately chosen to the theme, open and safe for anyone who would like to join. 

When designing the final programme, the programme committee will ensure that each group of the Europeana Initiative is equally represented. The Committee is made up of members of the Europeana Initiative: 


For all other questions, please contact the events team.