Project type and period

Type: Nordplus Adult
Period: Aug 2022 to July 2024 (24 months)

Work title

Develop online tools to assess the added community values of participatory culture
(Project acronym: ADDED)

Background and need

The huge civil society sector of amateur arts, voluntary culture, and heritage (1) in the Nordic and Baltic Countries not only provide joy, friendship, and meaning for the participants, but it can also support and strengthen the added community values, like social inclusion & cohesion, active citizenship & democracy, environmental sustainability.

However, these potential for fostering societal benefits can be improved by a more conscious development work by the learning providers in the sector and by a strengthened support from the key stakeholders. There is need for developing new tools and methods to improve the work with the many potentials for societal benefits.

(1) Here is used a tripartite division of the sector, where heritage” is included together with amateur arts” and voluntary culture”.

Aim and objectives

Based on these considerations, the aim of the project is to support lifelong learning providers in the sector of amateur arts and voluntary culture to gain better tools and practise methods to assess these potentials of their activities to promote such key societal benefits.

Until now, learning providers in the sector can use many good practice examples as inspiration and support. However, there is a need of more systematic tools and methods for the learning providers on how to concretely assess their own activities and implement improved practice.

  • The objectives are thus to:
  • Provide a benchmarking survey to disclose the key points and indicators of the 3 focus areas of added values:
  • Develop an online Benchmark Tool, which allows the stakeholders to assess themselves in different dimensions and categories of societal benefits.
  • Develop training programmes and manuals for applying the Benchmark Tool by different groups of stakeholders in varying contexts in the cross-cultural civil society sector.
  • Disseminate the results to the wider Nordic-Baltic community in a sustainable manner.

Key activities and results

1. Complete a benchmarking survey

1.1. Provide guidelines for the benchmarking survey (based on desk and field research).

1.2. Complete both desk research and field research (4 qualitative interview in each partner country) to disclose the key points and indicators of the 3 focus areas of added community values of participatory culture: social inclusion & cohesion; active citizenship & democracy; environmental sustainability.

1.3. Deliver summary reports (8 pages, English) from each partner country

1.4. Publish Baseline Survey with recommendations for the design of the Benchmark Tool

2. Develop Benchmark Tool with related manuals and training programme

2.1. Design the Tool’s frame and questionnaire with a flexible option to select from 1 to all 3 focus areas to assess, English version

2.2. Translate the English master version and provide national language versions of the online tool

2.3. Complete national tests of the draft versions

2.4. Publish online Benchmark Tool, incl. user manual in 5 language versions (EN, DK, LV, FI, IS)

3. Disseminate the project results

3.1. Provide a project website, English ed.

3.2. Add online site for the Benchmark Tool

3.3. Complete concluding national conferences (multiplier events)

3.4. Provide other sustainable dissemination (news-mail, social media, articles, promotion at events, personal meetings with decision-makers, etc)

Target groups

DIRECT TARGET GROUPS are managers, board members and other paid and voluntary staff from the cross-cultural sector of amateur arts, voluntary culture, and heritage in the Nordic-Baltic countries

  • First direct target group includes the organisations and their network participating in the project
  • Second direct target group includes neighbour associations in the cross-cultural civil society sector in the participating countries
  • Third direct target group includes similarly associations in the other Nordic and Baltic countries that are not represented in the project consortium.

INDIRECT TARGET GROUPS include persons, organisations, and institutions in the Nordic-Baltic region, which can support the application of the project results among the direct target groups, such as:

  • First indirect target group includes appropriate decision-makers, opinion-formers and funders, who that may support the activities political, ideological and Financial.
  • Second indirect target group includes private stakeholders from the local commerce associations, private businesses, and media, who may support and sponsor the activities.
  • Third indirect target group includes public and private research institutions of participatory culture and lifelong learning in a civil society context, who may strengthen the awareness of the results and promote the key outcome.

The partnership circle

Interfolk – Institute for Civil Society, Denmark

Applicant and coordinator
Interfolk, Institute for Civil Society (DK) – see
Skovgade 25, DK-5500 Middelfart
Hans Jørgen Vodsgaard, Head of Institute
(+45) 51 300 320 *

Interfolk, Institute for Civil Society, is a Danish non-profit and non-governmental association and
private research institute, founded in 2008.

The mission is to strengthen lifelong learning activities characterized by personal autonomy, active citizenship, social inclusion and cultural cohesion within liberal adult education, participatory culture and other civil society associations in a Danish, Nordic and European context. The activities of Interfolk include surveys, development projects, courses, seminars, debate and
other cultural activities – in a Danish, Nordic and European context. Interfolk has the last 10 years with varying roles as partner and coordinator been engaged in:

  • 7 Grundtvig and Erasmus development projects, 2 Grundtvig and Erasmus network projects, 3 Erasmus mobility projects, and 1 Creative Europe Network project.
  • 6 Nordplus development projects and 1 Nordplus mapping project, 1 culture point project and 4 Nordic Council of Ministers NGO projects.
  • 5 major Danish research and development projects.

Interfolk is a member of the Baltic Sea NGO Network, the International Platform for Citizen Participation (IPCP), the European Network for Active Participation in Cultural Activities (AMATEO), and the European Network for Transfer and Exploitation of EU Project Results ( E.N.T.E.R.).

Det Frivillige Kulturelle Samråd, D∙F∙K∙S, Denmark

National Association of Cultural Councils in Denmark (DK) – See
Farvergade 27a, 2 nd floor, 1463 Copenhagen K, Denmark
Bente von Schindel, General Secretary, MA (Nordic Literature and Rhetoric)
(+45) 29 64 70 40 *

The umbrella organization Det Frivillige Kulturelle Samråd – DFKS – is a Danish non-profit and non- governmental association that was founded at a representative board meeting in 2015. Det Frivillige Kulturelle Samråd consists of 9 organisations, which are national associations for local associations and companies, where volunteers mediate, organise, arrange, create frameworks etc. for art, culture and cultural heritage in theatre associations, art associations, music associations, film clubs, writers’ associations, museum associations, local history associations and cultural councils. The organisation wants to strengthen the visibility of the area and promote dialogue with both local and national politicians, to strengthen the development work and further training of the volunteers to ensure more knowledge, documentation and statistics about the work and importance of the cultural volunteers for art, culture and cultural heritage. Voluntary cultural association life constitutes a very extensive part of the overall voluntary association life in Denmark. When talking about cultural volunteers in the field of culture, we are talking about volunteers who coordinate, arrange, communicate and create frameworks for art and culture in theatre associations,
art associations, music associations, museum associations, historical and literary societies. In all the associations, both the voluntary and professional areas are at play, but it is the volunteers’ initiative and commitment that initiates and drives the activities.

In addition to being a large part of the content of life for many, it also means a multitude of cultural activities and cultural offerings around the country to the delight of large parts of the population – and perhaps to the added delight of the sparsely populated areas, where otherwise there would not be many opportunities to have experiences with art and culture.
DFKS has been a part of both Nordic and European projects.

Culturelab, LATVIA

L. Paegles 2D-26, Cesis, LV-4101, Latvia * (+371) 26011102
Ilona Asare, chairman *

Culturelab (cultural laboratory) is a non-governmental organization founded in 2005 with the aim of promoting sustainable social and economic development of society through strategic and innovative use of cultural resources. The articles of association of the organization prescribe the following tasks:

– To educate the public about the importance of culture in the socio-economic development of society;
– Promoting the integration of cultural planning and strategies into regional development plans by identifying and making effective use of existing cultural resources;
– To promote civic participation and initiative of the public in the planning and implementation of regional cultural development;
– To contribute to the development of successful cooperation projects in public-private partnerships;
– To develop international cultural cooperation and exchange of experience.
In 2006, the organization has been granted public benefit status.

Culturelab’ s main areas of activity:
Research and consultancy:
– implementation of cultural policy research in cooperation with research organizations of Latvia and the European Union;
– support and advice in developing a cultural strategy for a city or county involving the local cultural sector.
– Lectures, seminars and workshops in the management of cultural organizations and audience development.
– Creation of publications and publications on topics of public interest.

Creative cross-sectoral cooperation projects, raising awareness of the impact of culture on the growth and socio-economic development of the local community/community.
The association has brought together specialists in cultural management and cultural policy with
many years of experience in the implementation of strategic and educational cultural projects.

Finnish Federation of Settlements (FI)

Sturenkatu 11 A (4th floor), 00510 Helsinki *
Pentti Lemmetyinen, managing director
+358400961469 *
Staffan Lindqvist, Secretary-General of the International Federation of Settlements (IFS)
+46723119400 *

Suomen Setlementtiliitto (Finnish Settlement Association) was founded in 1918, and it is a life course organisation that consists of 45 settlements located all over Finland. The settlement movement employs more than 5600 professionals, and a large group of volunteers is also involved in settlement work. The organisation is also hosting IFS (International Federation of Settlements and Neighbourhood Centres) in their headquarter. It is deeply committed to the international work for social justice, sustainability and human rights, fighting against racism, nationalism and populism.
The basis for settlement operations was established in community centres founded in the poorest quarters of east London at the end of the 19th century. They influenced their surrounding communities by developing and maintaining interactive social and educational work. Each community centre offered both training and support for people struggling with social problems. The
ideology of the settlement movement has from the start been based on the empowering effect of
promoting community activities.

FSA’s activities include working with the elderly, child and youth work, multicultural work, the development and production of communal forms of housing, different forms of supported housing, community centre activity, providing services for people facing mental challenges, supplying education to 16 community colleges, three folk high schools and two special education schools, various forms of trauma and crisis work, substance abuse rehabilitation services, debt counselling, mediating and victim support.
The work of FFSH and its member organisations is made possible through service charges from the provision of wellbeing services, by support from Veikkaus (a gaming company owned by the Finnish state), earmarked subsidies from ministries and donations from private individuals. The activities are non-profit.

Capacity & key persons
Key staff involved in the project will be
– Staffan Lindqvist, Secretary General of the International Federation of Settlements (IFS). Bachelor in Sociology.
– Pentti Lemmetyinen, managing director. Master of Education.
– Junias Kanyinda: Communication officer, responsible for the IFS communication incl. website and social media. Bachelor in Business Administration.
The Settlement team has wide expertise in surveys, social media, communication and IKT- design.

Vestvågøy Kommune, NORWAY

VM – Vestvågøy Municipality, Culture department (NO) –
Storgata 37, 8370 Leknes, Lofoten, Norge
Trond Handberg, acting director of the Culture Department, Vestvågøy Municipality  * (+47) 928 53 062 Mobil: (+47) 928 53 062

Unit: Department of Culture, Sports and Leisure Vestvågøy Kommune

Type: Public Enterprise.

Vestvågøy municipality has over 11,000 inhabitants, and is thus the largest municipality in Lofoten. With its exciting and varied nature, the municipality’s residents have a variety of opportunities for outdoor life.

On hot summer days, you can use one of the island’s many beaches, or you can enjoy the midnight sun from the Eggum and Utakleiv viewpoints. In both summer and winter, there are many opportunities for trips in the mountains – regardless of whether you like quiet trips along good paths, or challenging summit trips with skis or climbing equipment. The sea invites you to kayak and surf – and what about fishing for your own dinner?
As the geographical centre of Lofoten, it is not only a short distance to the intense nature experiences and cultural activities that can be found around the island kingdom. This means that it is a short distance to the rest of the world as well. The infrastructure in Lofoten is good, and you can get to Vestvågøy by car, bus, express route and plane. The airport is only a couple of minutes’ drive from Leknes, the municipality’s administrative and commercial centre, and has several departures daily. The mainland connection in the north and the ferry connection to Bodø also contribute to Vestvågøy being an easy place to visit – something nature-loving tourists know to appreciate!