Beyond the Obvious: Concept

March 2, 2018, 12:15 pm

The 2015 Beyond the Obvious Conference calls on its participants to learn, reflect, and debate on what balance shall be sought between the condition for a meaningful public sphere on one side, and private and commercial interests on the other, in order to:

  • Ensure the enjoyment of fundamental cultural rights such as participation in cultural life and the right to freely express oneself;
  • Guarantee a fair remuneration to creation together with the conditions to create and exchange in the digital world;
  • Fulfil peoples’ right to take part in governance and to shape their community, at local/regional level.


All rights come with related duties among which those to the community in which alone the free and full development of his (her) personality is possible.

Among these, for “the people of culture”, is to bear the responsibility to strive for the cultural development of every child and adult to be recognised and supported as an essential public good. The alternative – we are already witnessing it – is to see culture loosing ground in a shrinking public sphere and being marginalised to the domain of entertainment and leisure.


The historical period we live brings new and old and challenges that demand innovative answers, creative thinking, disposition to change and to commit, to strive, to coalesce with others. More in general, our fast changing times demand that “the people of culture” embrace and truly enact a broader “civic footprint” approach to their relation with society and to advocacy.

The Universal Declaration of Human Rights ends saying that nobody holds the right to engage in any activity or to perform any act aimed at the destruction of any of the rights and freedoms set forth herein. The real world shows that, on the contrary, many attempt to do this and often sadly succeed.

BtO will gather many who, instead, engage in enhancing those rights in their professional and private lives. All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. They are endowed with reason and conscience and should act towards one another in a spirit of solidarity.


BtO invests in the empathy, reason and conscience of the “people of culture” because only this forms people’s direct engagement in developing adequate solutions to today’s challenges, daring to bring these considerations to light and guiding us through the transition we are in.

Read the whole concept paper

Beyond the Obvious

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