Putting values at the heart of Europe's digital future
The first day of the conference opened with an address from Commissioner Thierry Breton, who introduced the European data space for cultural heritage, underlining the role of Europeana and its vibrant community in establishing such a digital space. Keynote speeches from Yvo Volman and George Oates further deepened our understanding, highlighting the importance of democratic access to digital public spaces and exploring how we can preserve and protect them. Following this inspiring morning, afternoon sessions looked at topics including Open Glam, cultural heritage hackathons, the role of digital cultural heritage in education and more.
Ensuring sustainable digital transformation
Day two of Europeana 2021 was dedicated to sustainable digital transformation, opening with a compelling speech from Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, Secretary General of Europa Nostra. Her address emphasised the importance of cultural heritage in shaping a sustainable and beautiful future. The Europeana Initiative was excited to follow up on the address by launching a Climate Action Manifesto, a commitment to minimising the digital cultural heritage sector’s impact on the climate and environment. After this exciting morning, afternoon sessions explored preserving heritage, greening cultural heritage institutions, creating impact, enabling diversity and inclusion, using immersive technologies and much more!
Using technology to drive social change
The final day of Europeana 2021 looked at how the sector could use technology as a tool for social change. A topical, thought-provoking and insightful keynote from Professor Pier Luigi Sacco opened the day, exploring cultural participation in the digital world, and how to make it inclusive, democratic and collective. The talk further enriched our understanding of participation, which was supported in later sessions on extended reality, artificial intelligence, digital storytelling, crowdsourcing and using digital cultural heritage to raise awareness of the climate emergency.
Europeana 2021 also provided plenty of opportunities for participants to relax, network and have fun. Gather.Town provided an informal digital space to make new connections and we were happy to include a dedicated space and lunch event for new professionals and those attending their first conference. Participants were also able to have fun with a pub quiz, mindful origami sessions and a #DigitalAperitivo. This online event, organised by the Europeana Communicators Community, encouraged participants to come together and share the culture they love on social media, in multiple languages. You can still explore all the wonderful cultural heritage shared through the Aperitivo on Twitter.
Rewatch the keynotes and panel sessions
With a conference as rich as Europeana 2021, it was hard to follow all of the action, so we are delighted to share the recordings of the keynotes and all the panel sessions, which are available on our conference page. For each session you can find some information about what the session covered, who the expert speakers are, view any related presentations and of course re-watch the sessions themselves.