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Europe’s content industries: New opportunities for storytelling, funding and technology

A Science|Business executive roundtable, supported by the European Commission (by invitation only)

Europe's creative and cultural industries are vibrant and vast, representing 4.2% of the EU's GDP, employing 8.4 million - and enriching the lives of citizens everywhere. The EU entertainment software industry is growing steadily and profitably. Video and film continue to be acclaimed European exports. And a profusion of new interactive and online technologies - from social media to virtual reality - are opening new opportunities for European entrepreneurship. To maximise its impact in the future, the European content industry needs to collaborate better with technology companies, innovate new finance and business models, and look to growing global markets while maintaining their European identities.

The latest legislation for Horizon Europe, the EU's next big research and innovation programme, proposes an ambitious effort to catalyse this kind of interaction and dynamism. At the same time, a range of other EU policies and programmes - Creative Europe, Invest EU, Digital Europe - are working to strengthen and support cultural and creative initiatives that can have an impact on the sector and promote international cooperation.

This Science|Business roundtable is intended to open a cross-sectoral, pan-European discussion on how these programmes might develop during the 2020s, and how these inter-related industries could best prosper in global and European markets. The dialogue will bring together leaders in video and film production, augmented and virtual reality, innovative finance, technology platforms, and in European and member state policy making. The half-day workshop, which will produce a published report of conclusions, will be opened by Christian Ehlera rapporteur in the European Parliament on the Horizon Europe legislation, and a strong champion of the future opportunities this fusion of sectors, technologies and finance can bring. Among the questions to be debated:

  • What new directions will technology offer for these industries?
  • How can we better connect the content and technology industries in Europe?
  • How can we help Europe’s content industries scale up globally?
  • How can technology platforms help this sector?
  • What can EU programmes do to support all of these developments?
  • How the industry should prepare itself for the ongoing and upcoming changes?
Featured guests
Christian Ehler
Member, European Parliament
Andreas Ehret
Vice President, Technology, Multiscreen Services Audio, Dolby Germany
Claire Bury
Deputy Director-General, DG Communications Networks, Contents and Technology, European Commission
Lucia Recalde
Head of Unit, Audiovisual Industry and Media Support Programmes, DG CNECT, European Commission
Susanne Stürmer
President, Film University Babelsberg Konrad Wolf; Member of the Board, ELIA
Bernd Fesel
Managing Director, European Creative Business Network
Rodolphe Buet
Director, On Entertainment - Method Animation; President, Momagat Consulting
Lily Diaz-Kommonen
Professor; Head, Research, Department of Media, Aalto University
Ugo Bacchella
President, Fitzcarraldo Foundation
Marie Delbeke
Business Manager Equity Investments, PMV
Ross Biggam
Vice President, Government Affairs EMEA, Discovery Communications
Aletxu Echevarría
President, Basque Audiovisual and Digital Content Cluster (EIKEN)
Luk Overmeire
Technology Expert, VRT Research and Innovation

08:15-09:00 Registration and welcome coffee

09:00-10:00 Welcome by Richard L. Hudson, Vice-Chair of the Board & Editor-in-Chief, Science|Business, and Q&A with Christian Ehler, Member, European Parliament and Claire Bury, Deputy Director-General, DG Communications Networks, Content and Technology, European Commission

10:00-11:00 Setting the scene: The trends that will change the industry, new business models and new cultural patterns 

11:00-11:30 Coffee break

11:30-12:45 Open discussion: Suggestions for managing change, encouraging cross-sector collaboration.

12:45-13:00 Conclusions for policy

13:00-14:00 Networking lunch


For more information, please contact Stefania Gavra (