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Round Table "Protection of Cultural Property: Russian-Austrian Cooperation Space"

Round Table "Protection of Cultural Property: Russian-Austrian Cooperation Space"


The conference "Protection of Cultural Property: the Russian-Austrian cooperation space" was held at the Kutafin University (Moscow State Law Academy) within the VIII Moscow Legal Forum on April 13, 2021. The partners in the event organization were the Kutafin Moscow State Law University and the Ministry of Culture of the Russian Federation. The conference was moderated by Vladimir Sinyukov, Vice-Rector for Research of Kutafin University, Doctor of Law, Professor, Honored Scientist of the Russian Federation. The moderator gave opening remarks to the participants. "Today's agenda is cultural cooperation and its legal aspects. Russia and Austria are great cultural powers: Austria has strong historical traditions, which represent many of the cultural achievements of the world, the Russian Federation also has great historical and cultural traditions. There is a growing public interest in cultural values, as states and nations honor their historical traditions and strive for national identity. Today there are challenges and threats associated with international conflicts, terrorism, cybercrime, which pose a threat to cultural values," explained Vladimir Sinyukov.

Victor Blazheev, Rector of Kutafin University and member of the Coordination Committee of the Sochi Dialogue, welcomed the Russian and foreign participants of the major event. "The main idea of the Sochi Dialogue is to strengthen ties between representatives of civil society in Russia and Austria, to conduct an active dialogue and discuss the problems that have accumulated in society. The subject of discussion was the protection of intellectual property, intellectual rights, access to cultural values, legal regulation, cultural projects. During the period of the pandemic, issues of strengthening cultural ties and the emergence of joint projects have become of particular interest," said Victor Blazheev.Vladimir Sinyukov noted that the importance of this meeting is emphasized by the presence of official representatives of the Embassy of Austria.

First Secretary of the Austrian Embassy in the Russian Federation Nicole Grisemeyer said: "Russia and Austria are linked by years of close cultural cooperation. The heart of Austrian cultural work in Russia is the Austrian Cultural Forum of the Austrian Embassy, which supports Austrian cultural figures by presenting their work in Russia. The forum tries to strengthen the Austrian cultural presence in Russia and promote the dialogue. An important contribution to bilateral cultural relations is made by Austrian libraries in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Yekaterinburg, and Nizhny Novgorod. Another important step was the opening of the Austrian German Language Center in Moscow in 2018.

Anna Maria Kaiser, head of the master's program "Protection of Cultural Property" at Danube University Krems, gave a presentation on "Protection of Cultural Property through Preventive Measures, Awareness Raising and Web Based Anticipation Tools". It is of particular importance to raise public awareness about the protection of cultural property. I see four main points in this issue - the importance of cultural property, science and economics, the perception of cultural property, and its financial value," stated Anna Maria Kaiser.

The director of the Austrian Cultural Forum in Moscow, Fabian Ortner, focused on the topic "The Future of Russian-Austrian Cultural Cooperation ".

"The main goals of Austrian cultural policy are to support young scientists and artists from Russia, to create diplomatic relations in the fields of culture and science, scientific digitalization, diplomacy and dialogue. Despite the negative impact of the pandemic, cultural cooperation is flourishing".

"The Sochi Dialogue - is an opportunity to strengthen cooperation in the field of art and culture, many ideas are expressed here as well as plans for their realization. The role of the cultural forum is to help develop these ideas and bring together people who have a creative mind, both on the Austrian and Russian side," concluded Fabian Ortner.

Simon Mraz, head of special cultural projects at the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria, made a presentation "Protecting Cultural Heritage in Austria and Russia: Personal Experience. "

"Foreign policy in the sphere of culture is art-oriented. One of the main issues is the protection of the artworks. This issue is a legal aspect. To preserve works of art for decades is a huge task for Russian art, for artists. There is a need to preserve information for contemporary art, which is often in private collections", - summed up Simon Mraz.