International Cultural Affairs
Culture can help to overcome political barriers and frontiers and build bridges between peoples and cultural areas
In these days, international cultural exchange receives top priority. The task is therefore to encourage and expand international cultural encounter, particularly among young people. This is especially important in places where political developments and military conflicts have created barriers that often seem insurmountable.
Since the fall of the Berlin Wall and the Iron Curtain, the Free State of Bavaria has concentrated its efforts most particularly on encouraging intercultural activities with the Central, South Eastern and Eastern European States. Thanks to numerous bilateral and multilateral projects and the exchange of experts, it has been possible to discover common ground in a variety of ways, and to provide fresh stimuli.
In addition, priority is also placed on fostering relations with Bavaria's neighbouring regions and partner countries in Western Europe. In this respect, there is close co-operation not only in bilateral exchange with numerous regions in Austria, Italy and France, but also at the level of the cultural commissions.
The cultural commissions of
- Alpenkonvention - the Alpine Convention,
- ARGE ALP - the Alpine Countries Work Group (website in German),
- Arbeitsgemeinschaft Donauländer - the Danube Countries Work Group (website in German) and
- Internationale Bodensee Konferenz - International Lake Constance Conference (website in German).
Cultural exchange must not be allowed to stop at Europe's borders. Historical connections and political considerations have led to institutionalised partnerships with South Africa (the Provinces of the West Cape and Gauteng), Brazil (Sao Paulo), China (Shandong Province) the USA (California) and Canada (Québéc). The most recent partnership has been established with Karnataka in India.