Workshop on Cultural Diplomacy with Mr Juan Manuel VILAPLANA LÓPEZ

Between 8-9 February, more around 30 students of the College of Europe Natolin participated in the workshop on Cultural Diplomacy. The workshop, part of the institution's Professional Development Programme, focused on exploring the fundamental role of arts and culture as a valuable source of (soft) power in international relations.

The event, organized by the Student Affairs and Professional Development Office, was facilitated by experienced diplomat Juan Manuel VILAPLANA LÓPEZ, the current Chargé d'Affaires of Spain to the Republic of Moldova. With extensive experience in diplomatic affairs, Mr VILAPLANA LÓPEZ provided participants with profound insights into the principles and practices of cultural diplomacy, as well as the competencies of the European Union in this field.

The workshop was divided into two sessions. The first session was theoretical, covering the fundamentals of Cultural Diplomacy, EU competencies, its legal basis, and its potential. The second session was practical, reviewing the European Work Plan for Culture concerning its external dimension.

The main objective of this course is to encourage reflection on the EU's action in the field of cultural diplomacy, promoting new ideas and solutions for a more integrated approach. After examining the current state, limitations, and potential of existing mechanisms, participants are better equipped to apply their negotiation skills in simulated strategic discussions and country-level coordination exercises.

The College of Europe thanks Juan Manuel VILAPLANA LÓPEZ for his outstanding facilitation and all participants for their commitment and enthusiasm during the workshop. This event marks another milestone in the institution's ongoing commitment to promoting intercultural dialogue and cultural diplomacy in the European and international arena.