This year’s TRANSEUROPA Festival took place in just one city, Belgrade, instead of 13 as in previous years, while additional activities were held across Europe: Why artivism readings and the game Green Screen Diaries. The festival’s main objective remained the same: bringing different people from different backgrounds, across disciplines and nationalities together to discuss, live and experience another Europe.
We received responses from 40 participants. Internally, staff has spent the last month evaluating the festival. Here is an overview of what we have discovered to be the most interesting findings:
The overall quality of the TRANSEUROPA Festival
Almost everyone (just under 95%) acknowledged the quality of the festival. Just about half (48.7%) of the participants thought the quality was very good and another quarter (25.6%) even stated it was of excellent quality. An additional fifth (20.5%) still rated the quality good. As shown in the upcoming sections, speakers, participants and location have contributed to the high quality of the festival.
The decision to have the festival in one city only and the choice of Belgrade
Generally, respondents liked the idea of the festival taking place in just one city. Almost 90% said they thought the decision was either very good or good and no one found the idea to be not good at all.That is in the top 3 highest approvals received in the evaluation, topped only by “the chance to meet people from different countries and contexts” (also 90% approval) and the decision to organize the festival in Belgrade (100% approval)To some, the sessions and workshops of the festival were still too widespread across the city and they would “opt for a more centralized festival”, while the internal discussion evolves around the question of whether or not the festival was too centralized already as to be called transeuropean.
The quality of speakers, workshops, panels
We were very pleased to read the feedback about the speakers at both workshops and panels. Three quarters of speakers were described as being either very or extremely engaging and the choice of topics was acknowledged to be good or very good by nine out of ten people.
While the quality of the workshops was rated as high, a problem evolved which is best articulated by the following comment: “[there is a] need to produce documentation for all the activities since we had to choose between equally good ones”. The criticism here, we believe, is an organizational one: Too many things happening at the same time as well as the cost restraints associated with recording each event. This feedback is also reflected in the call for a more centralized festival.
Another proof of not only the quality of invited speakers but also of each participant, is the call for more and earlier lightning-talks, which was mentioned in the comments. They were seen as a good means to identify like-minded participants and from the very beginning of the festival discuss possibilities of future collaboration. This leads us to our last section:
Follow-up possibilities / for future collaborations
We further asked the participants how they would rate the possibility for future collaborations with other participants and/or with European Alternatives. We were delighted that 50% of the respondents said it would be likely or very likely that new projects and collaborations will emerge from their participation in the festival, while almost the entire other half stated that it is possible. Only five percent believed it was not likely.
Three quarters (75.7%) of respondents are further interested in collaborating with EA in the future, something that we are already looking forward to. We are constantly looking at new ways to get involved with EA, while we are always open for collaboration ideas from the outside, just get in touch with ideas or proposals.
Bringing people together who would not otherwise have met is why we organize the festival, thus these figures fuel our hope for more transnational collaboration between civil society actors, artists and cultural workers. It adds to our belief that there is a chance for an alternative Europe.
We are looking forward to hearing from you and participating in projects that have or will have emerged from the festival. We will now turn our minds to the 2016 Transeuropa-Campus before the next edition of TRANSEUROPA Festival in 2017.