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ETN Working Groups

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Concept Group for ETN Conferences

Ms Beatrijs Sterk
Publisher of Textile Forum magazine until 2014
e-mail: ETN@ETN-net.net
(For complete addresses see Pfeil'Board members')

Guidelines for ETN Conferences

Any event fulfilling the minimum requirements can call itself ETN Conference, even if no General Assembly is held. It will receive the same publicistic attention as does a Conference with a General Assembly.

Usually ETN Conferences have two organizers
1) a local/regional/national organizing committee
2) the board of the ETN Association, resp. a body assigned by the board.
The committee mentioned ad 1) should be headed by an ETN member. Also the body mentioned ad 2) should be led by an ETN member.

The ETN Conferences should have a double aim:
• to make the local/regional/national actors and achievements known to the participants
• to serve European cooperation.
From this double function no tensions should arise.

With regard to the participants, ETN Conferences should consider the three major language families in Europe - Slavic, Anglo-Saxon/Germanic and Romanic. Except for the hosts' language, communication in English (Conference language and texts) should be provided.

At all ETN Conferences there should be space for information from all parts of Europe, e.g. through visual presentations (exhibitions, shows, slides and video/film presentations), oral communications (lectures and working groups) and print media (documentation with texts and images). Furthermore practical transmission of experiences (demonstrations, workshops etc) should be on the agenda.

ETN Conferences should avoid any kind of Eurocentrism. On the contrary, it will be important to give access to non-European participants. The conference documentation should possibly improve the relation to non-European partners.

ETN Conferences should be organized in a transversal way, which means that they should con tribute to co-operations beyond the borders of the major textile fields, as there are:
• contemporary cultural production (in art, crafts and industry)
• cultural heritage
• education/training

Furthermore the transmission of knowledge and experiences also beyond the different branches should be envisaged.

The Conferences should be thus helping to enlarge the knowledge and possibilities for cooperation, both inside as well as outside Europe.

Minimum requirements of an ETN Conference
• A minimum amount of 50 participants should be the aim, of these at least 25 persons should be from foreign countries, representing the three major language families
• The programme should contain topics of interest for the participation of the three textiles fields of activities (contemporary cultural production, cultural heritage and education/training)
• There should be at least one programme topic expressively including transversal cooperation (e.g. the conception, setting up and connection of textile routes)
• There should be at least one European presentation of textile cultural achievements during the conference (e.g. an exhibition or a multi-media show)
• From the part of the hosts there should be the possibility to gain insight into the local/regional/national textile cultural achievements
• The Conference management should allow for informal meetings - both regarding time and space
• During the time of the Conference, the hosts should help the ETN development through
-active cooperation in meetings and working groups of ETN members
-advising the organizers of future ETN Conferences
-recruitment of ETN members in their own country
• The hosts should oblige themselves to cover the following costs, resp. making themselves responsible for the funding (~500 ECU per person) for the following expenditures:
-Mobility costs of at least 10 participants from European countries with currency problems (e.g. Central/Eastern Europe)
-Mobility costs of ETN Board members
• The Conference fees should be divided into a core fee and fees for additional events, leaving the possibility of choice for the participants. The basic fee should be reduced to the main events of the Conference. The fee should also be affordable to independent artists with a small income. - For participants from Central/Eastern Europe there should be a special arrangements for reduced fees.
• Finally, every ETN Conference should provide a minimum documentation, possibly already at the beginning of the Conference, with the name, function, address, tel/fax/e-mail/URL of the registered participants and institutions and the relevant persons and institutions who have cooperated in the Conference's preparations

Conferences in connection with ETN General Assemblies
It is up to the ETN Board to decide which ETN Conference shall be connected with a General Assembly of the Network's Association. The Board can change its decision at least six weeks before the beginning of the event.
Usually the Board will connect the General Assemblies with the best conditions for ETN's purposes offered by the local Conference organizer.

The state of affairs of the Network
The financial situation of the Network still does not allow to cover the costs of mobility of the ETN bodies. In addition, the international organizations/foundations are not providing assistance in this matter unless these costs are connected to international projects/events. Thus the members of a body are relying on the cooperation of the organizing committee of each ETN Conference, in order to be able at all to come together in the sense of their functions. (It cannot be expected of the members of an ETN body that - in addition to their considerable honorary duties - they also have to pay their mobility costs themselves).
Therefore the Network Association has to expect from the local/regional/national conference organizers, that they contribute to the improvement of the working conditions of the ETN bodies, also in those cases where the acitivities of the members of such a body are not only serving the aim of the Conference preparation.

Beatrijs Sterk
Secretary General

Hannover, September 2000

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