8th ENCATC Working Group on Evaluation

Zagreb, Croatia

Evaluation of International and European Transnational Cultural Projects

About this meeting

This ENCATC Working Group meeting on 29 May 2019 in Zagreb built on the progress achieved from previous meetings in Brussels, Lyon, Potsdam, Manchester, Antwerp, and Maastricht. 

It was hosted by Kultura Nova Foundation, a member of ENCATC.

This activity in Zagreb was dedicated to the topic of “International cultural projects evaluation in curricula and education programmes: how trainers and researchers teach evaluation?”.

The objective was be to provide recommendations for trainers and teachers to include and develop the thematic of evaluation in their education programmes. It was designed around two main sessions:

  • In the morning, the session will host one expert of international cultural projects evaluation and one keynote speaker on cultural management and policies training.
  • In the afternoon, coordinators of education programs and teachers are invited to present their curriculum and the modules they set up for evaluation of international projects in their universities or training centres.


What took place?

This session, hosted by Kultura Nova in Zagreb Croatia, focused on the topic of evaluation in education programmes, exploring its place in curricula and the way that it is taught. In common with previous working group meetings, it combined a series of interventions with discussion of the main themes.

Ferdinand Richard, Chair of the Roberto Cimetta Fund, began the day with a timely and relevant presentation about the key global challenges confronting anyone involved in evaluation in the cultural sector. He emphasised the need to revisit evaluation criteria regularly, respecting both international  conventions and local circumstances with both short term flexibility and long term resilience (link to full text here). The discussion that followed delved further into the issue of the role that evaluation can play in defending the cultural sector through an evidential base, responding to attack from various quarters, not least populist political pressure.

This was followed by two informative and enlightening overviews by Pascale Bonniel-Chalier (Université Lumiere Lyon2) and Yesim Tonga (IMT Lucca) on teaching of evaluation within University programmes. They emphasised how students are require to be involved actively in projects as well as learning theoretical components. The aim is that those emerging into the cultural sector from the courses are familiar with the integral role that evaluation plays in cultural projects.

After lunch, the group was joined online by John Smithies from the Cultural Development Network in Australia. This interesting and pertinent presentation showed how they help local authorities and arts organisations with a framework that incorporates evaluation that is focused on outcomes and based on values to inform planning decisions. This was followed by Jonathan Goodacre from The Audience Agency, who looked at the way that cultural organisations, through a process of double-loop learning, can use evaluation to examine and challenge their underlying aims and assumptions.

Following on from this, participants split into three working groups looking at the topics of the contents of the training programmes and the curricula, the pedagogy of the transfer process and the skills and competences of cultural managers in cultural project engineering and evaluation.

The results of the working group will be taken forward to subsequent meetings in Lucca, Italy (October, 2019) and Brussels, Belgium (December, 2019) which will become part of a set of working group outputs during 2020.


The ENCATC Working Group was created to share evaluation experiences of transnational cultural projects and networks subsidized by EU and improve methodologies as well as to identify rigorous indicators for successful cooperation and share them with EU and international organisations.

Evaluation has become a more and more crucial matter for public authorities and professionals in cultural field. Several ENCATC members are involved in the evaluation of European projects subsidized by Creative Europe, Erasmus+, Horizon 2020 or other transnational programmes of European Commission. They have to develop methodologies to help arts and cultural managers to implement the evaluation process. At the same time, several European networks are looking for best practices on evaluation and monitoring. Upon several occasions they have expressed the need to create a space for exchange and mutual learning. The European Commission is also working on finalising its own evaluation policy for the Creative Europe programme. The feedback from the beneficiaries and cultural experts is very important for the finalisation and validation the EC’s work. All of these factors are contributing reasons for the need of a working group on the evaluation of international and European transnational projects.

On 25 October 2016 in Brussels, ENCATC held the kick-off meeting for its Working Group “Evaluation of International and European Transnational Cultural Projects”. Participants included representatives from the European Commission, national institutions, universities, European networks, cultural institutions, and consultancies from seven countries. The Working Group is led by its chair, Pascale Bonniel Chalier, a member of ENCATC from the University Lyon II in France. 

In 2017, ENCATC organised two more meetings: 

In 2018, ENCATC organised meetings on: 

8th ENCATC Working Group on Evaluation