SPACE: Sustainable Partnerships for Arts and Culture in Europe

Like many rural European regions, communities in Transylvania, East Germany, and Albania are challenged by migration and an accelerating decline of local cultural offerings.

Although most villages in Albania and Romania have designated cultural centers, such spaces are still to become more connected to local communities. Meanwhile, new community spaces emerge, providing new models of social activation through culture.

icebauhaus, Mihai and Maria Fratila Foundation / @HomeinFăgăraș, Tek Bunkeri, and the Fagaras Research Institute are initiators of MOCI Balkans, enabling new partnerships of cultural spaces and between creative pioneers. With SPACE (Sustainable Partnerships for Arts and Culture in Europe), we aim to activate local initiatives and inspire collaborators to develop future-oriented cultural solutions to systemic challenges. Cultural SPACES in rural areas can re-emerge as spaces of freedom placed at the heart of local community development.

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Team Proiect Rural Mindshift

Maria Chirilă

Team Proiect Rural Mindshift

Ana Marica

Team Proiect Rural Mindshift

Ștefan Cibian, Ph.D.

Maria Chirilă

Ana-Maria is Assistant Manager at the Făgăraș Research Institute. Also, she is a student at the Department for Biotechnical Systems Engineering, Faculty for Environmental Protection, University of Oradea. Ana-Maria considers that community engagement is an important part of one’s lifestyle, therefore, she is supporting the activity of the Țara Făgărașului Community Foundation and is a member of Carpati.org. Ana-Maria believes that what others do, and their actions, influence us all, therefore it is important that we create and collaborate, as we are sharing life experiences every day. Ana-Maria is passionate about exploring new places and sports, such as endurance biking, swimming, hiking, and gastronomy.
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Ana Marica

Ana's professional experience is located at the intersection of learning design, organizational development, and social impact. On a mission to understand how communities can change for the better when self-directed learning principles are introduced in the educational process, she has spent the last 8 years researching and connecting with projects and communities from around the world who actively contribute to reimagining educational paradigms. During this time, she has co-founded Digital Romads, a human resources and organizational design consultancy whose purpose is to support teams and organizations to explore transparent, open, self-managed, and co-created ways of collaborating and communicating. 
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Ștefan Cibian, Ph.D.

Dr. Ștefan Cibian is a member of the Board and the executive director of the Făgăraș Research Institute. Stefan is an Academy Associate with Chatham House – The Royal Institute of International Affairs. Stefan is teaching courses related to international relations, international development, international organizations, peacebuilding, and postcolonial Africa at the M.A. in International Development at the Political Science Department, Babeș-Bolyai University, and at the M.A. in International Public Affairs at the Political Science Department, University of Bucharest. His core research interests include international development, community development, Africa-CEE-EU relations, development policy, international relations theory, peacebuilding, fragile states, the link between research, policy, and practice, higher education policy, and global affairs. In terms of geographic focus, Stefan is primarily concerned with Sub-Saharan Africa, Central and Eastern Europe and the Black Sea Region, the European Union, and transatlantic relations. Stefan also focuses on civil society development in CEE. He is the President of ARCADIA – The Romanian Association for International Cooperation and Development and GRASP, and a Board Member with Țara Făgărașului Community Foundation (FCTF), UiPath Foundation, the Association for the Practice of Transformation, and the Romanian Federation of Community Foundations. Stefan is a member of the following networks: Bosch Alumni Network, BMW Responsible Leaders' Network, and Mercator Foundation TEFF Alumni Network. Stefan received his Ph.D. in political science and international relations (2012) and his M.A. in public policy (2006) from Central European University. He holds a B.A. in political science (2004) from Babeș-Bolyai University in Cluj-Napoca, Romania, and a B.A. in law (2005) from the 1st of December 1918 University, Alba Iulia, Romania. Stefan also studied or conducted research at Salzburg University, the University of Ljubljana, and UCLA.
FRI PublicationsExpert CommentsNews and mass-mediaOther publicationsEvents

Building and strengthening democratic ecosystems in local communities – A small guide

Mapping the mobilization of the Industry for Good® in countering the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, at the level of the Cluj-Napoca Metropolitan Area

Effects of COVID-19 on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – article

Transformative leadership for successful crisis management and effective multilateralism – Workshop

Book Launch – The Demographic Dividend and the Power of Youth

Daring New Spaces – Summit on the European Public Sphere

Interview – Daring New Spaces – Summit on the European Public Sphere

Desktop diplomacy: Training for European Diplomats

Brain Drain, Brain Gain and Social Innovation

Global Diplomacy Lab 2020 Summit

AIESEC 26: A Family Reunion

Mercator Winter Forum 2020

World Responsible Leaders Forum, Mexico

Pathways to Power Symposium: New Ways of Deciding and Doing. Taking #Shift the Power to the next level

Turkey – European Union Relations

The Europe of the Post-89ers

Emerging Engagements Between Central & Eastern Europe and Sub-Saharan Africa: Common Interests and Cooperation

The 11th Global Diplomacy Lab – Global Power Shifts: Political and Economic Inclusion for the Next Generation. Collaborating to Realize the Potential of the Demographic Dividend

Antall József Summer School, Budapesta

10th Global Diplomacy Lab – Collaborating to Realize the Potential of the Demographic Dividend in Africa: An Introduction to Ghana and Africa

Lithuanian Development Cooperation: Contribution to the Africa-EU Partnership

Atlas Network’s 2019 Europe Liberty Forum

Europe Think Tank Essentials Training Session, Belgrad

Turkey-Europe Future Forum Alumni Workshop