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Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators 16 Oct - 21 Oct, 2018
IMAGINATIONSalzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators16 Oct - 21 Oct, 2018



LOCATIONSchloss Leopoldskron, Salzburg, AustriaMAPFEE AND REGISTRATION INFORMATIONRegistration Deadline
01 Jan, 1970


    The Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators (YCI Forum) is a ten-year program launched by Salzburg Global Seminar in 2014. Its goal is to connect and empower a critical mass of talented change-makers across the world who work through the culture and arts sector to shape a more creative, just and sustainable world.

    Each year the Forum brings together a new group of fifty cultural innovators and creative practitioners, selected from participating city or country “hubs” with the active support of local partner organizations. The artistic disciplines they represent range from the visual and performing arts, literature, and cultural heritage, to foods, fashion, architecture, and design. The residential program at Schloss Leopoldskron is designed to help participants develop the dynamic vision, practical skills, and global networks they need to thrive in new ways, together with their organizations, causes and communities.

    Year on year, the YCI Forum is growing and nurturing a dynamic international network that catalyzes an expanding range of local and cross-border collaborations. The Forum represents a major commitment by Salzburg Global Seminar to fostering creative innovation and entrepreneurship for more inclusive and sustainable development. Focused on human capital and leadership development, the Forum aims to build a more vibrant and resilient culture and arts sector equipped to advance positive social change agendas and equitable community transformation worldwide. 


    Participant Profile

    The YCI Forum aims to build collaborative networks for human capital and leadership development within the cultural sector.

    Each annual YCI cohort is comprised of approximately ten expert facilitators and fifty young cultural innovators between the ages of 25 and 35 from around the world. The group is balanced in terms of gender, discipline, and geographic representation. Participants are chosen through a highly competitive application and nomination process, to ensure outstanding quality and diversity of professional knowledge and experience within the Forum.

    Most participants come from “YCI hubs” that Salzburg Global Seminar has been developing with partners in cities and regions around the world. These hubs – which form the core of the YCI Forum’s activities – now include: Adelaide, Australia; Athens, Greece; Baltimore, USA; Buenos Aires, Argentina; Canada; Cape Town, South Africa; Detroit, USA; Malta; Manila, Philippines; Memphis, USA; Nairobi, Kenya; New Orleans, USA; Mekong Delta: Cambodia, Vietnam, Laos, and Thailand; Plovdiv, Bulgaria; Salzburg, Austria; Seoul, South Korea; Tirana, Albania; and Tokyo, Japan. 


    Selection Criteria

    • 25-35 years of age; 
    • Proficiency in English; 
    • At least 2-3 years of professional experience in the cultural sector; 
    • Creativity in approach to work, openness to innovation and risk-taking, action orientation, and demonstrated entrepreneurial practice; 
    • Interest in creating social change and strengthening the position of the arts and cultural institutions within communities, demonstrated through a concrete example of one project already led or under development; 
    • Enjoyment of communication (social media savvy, etc.) and cooperation with others across sectors; 
    • Passion, enthusiasm, and leadership potential – with recommendations confirming these qualities and/or external recognition of accomplishment in this area: prize, award, citation; 
    • Desire to become an active member of the YCI Forum’s global network and willingness to commit time, energy, and resources to sustaining such a network, at the global, regional and local hub level. 


    Session Format

    Forum components include the one-week annual program in Salzburg combining theory and praxis, with capacity building sessions focusing on: 


    • Entrepreneurial Thinking; 
    • Human-Centered Design Processes; 
    • Strategic Planning and Organizational Development; 
    • Leadership and Values. 

    Outstanding participants from previous years are often invited back as facilitators/resource specialists at later sessions and regional events to assure continuity, communication and exchange of best practice across the Forum. The YCI Forum helps participants to create and develop hubs on all continents to share learning, scale up projects, and magnify the impact of the network created in Salzburg at the regional and community levels. YCI hub teams take the initiative to convene mini-sessions, workshops and public events and become a local resource for emerging cultural innovators.


    Outcomes and Impact

    Through the annual week-long program at Schloss Leopoldskron and ongoing network facilitation, the Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators aims to: 

    • Support a fragile and often under-resourced sector that is nevertheless a major driver of innovation, creativity, and social change; 
    • Create a world-class network of Young Cultural Innovators to drive and strengthen the arts sector worldwide and encourage cross-sectoral collaboration over the next decade; 
    • Build the capacity of a critical mass (500+) of networked young arts leaders committed to innovative leadership, social engagement, entrepreneurial approaches, and exchange of best practices within and among “YCI hubs” worldwide; 
    • Generate a multiplier effect on cultural organizations and networks around the world through the “YCI hubs” designed to share the learning from the Salzburg sessions and inspire innovation, collaboration, and peer mentoring at the local and regional level; 
    • Disseminate the Forum’s groundbreaking ideas to a broad community of stakeholders and build a creative network for continuing dialogue, collaboration and advocacy, through social media and catalyzed by the “YCI hubs.” 


    Mutli-Year Series


    Salzburg Global Seminar’s long-running series on Culture, Arts and Society focuses on the transformative power of the arts within and across sectors, facilitates cultural exchange at multiple levels, and provides unique networking and capacity-building opportunities. 

    Culture and the arts have had a prominent place in Salzburg Global Seminar’s programs since its beginnings as the Salzburg Seminar in American Studies in 1947. Today, through multi-year projects and strategic convenings, the Culture, Arts and Society series seeks to secure a more prominent role for the arts on policy agendas and to bring creative changemakers, influencers, and communities together to drive lasting change at scale. 

    As part of our deep commitment to next-generation talent, we support the continuously evolving needs of the creative sector as a major driver of sustainable economic development and social improvement, particularly through the Salzburg Global Forum for Young Cultural Innovators.

    For more information, please visit: yci.SalzburgGlobal.org