COMPENDIUM CULTURAL POLICIES AND TRENDS IN EUROPE
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Norbert Riedl

Since his retirement in December 2012, Norbert Riedl works for the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, the Arts and Culture as Senior Advisor for Strategies and Policies at the Interface of Arts, Culture and Education. He is also member of the panel for the European Capitals of Culture since April 2013.

During his active career, Norbert Riedl held positions at the Ministry in the field of international cultural relations and policy for 44 years. From 1974 to 2012, he worked in bilateral and multilateral cultural affairs, first as a member of the department responsible for Austrian schools abroad (Istanbul, Isfahan, Guatemala). In 1980, he took over the agenda of UNESCO Culture, the Austrian UNESCO Commission and the Council of Europe’s CDCULT. He also served on most of the Austrian cultural agreement delegations. He was a member of the delegation to UNESCO MONDIACULT 1982 in Mexico and represented the Ministry for the Arts and Culture at all UNESCO General Conferences from 1980 onwards.

From 1979, Norbert Riedl served as the permanent Austrian member on the CoE’s CDCULT Steering Committee, holding the position until 2012. He represented Austria on several Culture Committee projects and was involved in all CoE Conferences of the Ministers of Culture as the Austrian delegate. He was responsible for the presentation of the Austrian report within the framework of the Cultural Policy Review Programme of the CoE. He was Chairman of the Cultural Policy Review for Macedonia, Serbia and the Ukraine and CoE expert for Bulgaria and Montenegro. He served for three mandates as member of the Bureau of CDCULT and was Vice-Chairman and Chairman of the Committee from 1994 to 1998. From 1998 onwards, he was responsible for the Compendium within the framework of his department.

Norbert Riedl represented the Austrian Ministry at all meetings and conferences of INCP and negotiated the draft of the UNESCO Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expression on behalf of the Ministry. He headed the working group of Austrian artists and NGO’s on the Convention on Cultural Diversity within the framework of the Austrian national commission.

From the beginning of his career, Norbert Riedl was involved in various activities in South-Eastern Europe; he was responsible for the Council of Ministers of Culture of South-Eastern Europe. Austria joined the Council as an Observer from the beginning on.

Between 2001 and 2004, he organized three Conferences of Ministers of Culture of South-Eastern Europe in Vienna, Graz and Innsbruck. Besides these activities, Norbert Riedl was responsible for decorations and distinctions granted to distinguished artists, including the title “Professor” awarded by the Federal President of the Republic of Austria, for more than ten years. In operational terms, his activities included incoming and outgoing projects within the framework of bilateral agreements, protocol functions, as well the substantive preparation of incoming and outgoing ministerial visits. 

For two years, he held additionally the position of Head of Department for Cultural EU Affairs (2006 – 2008). Norbert Riedl studied law and attended the postgraduate training course for cultural management at the University of Linz.