Frequently Asked Questions
What is Ukrainian Institute and what it does?
Yes, the Ukrainian Institute is a cultural institute similar to the Goethe Institute, the Institut Français or the Instituto Cervantes. The Ukrainian Institute promotes intercultural cooperation and creates a space for the encounter with Ukrainian culture abroad. The Ukrainian Institute is an associate member of the EUNIC — European Union National Institutes for Culture.
However, each national institute has its own specific features. The Ukrainian Institute is a public institution affiliated to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine. It was established in 2017. So far, most projects have been designed at its headquarters in Kyiv and implemented in cooperation with institutions on the ground abroad. In March 2023, the first representative office abroad was opened in Berlin, and the next one will follow in Paris in October 2023.
The representative office in Germany is in the process of its institutionalization and works closely with the Ukrainian Institute’s headquarter in Kyiv. The opening of the office in Germany was made possible by a trilateral partnership between the Goethe Institute, the Open Society Foundations and the Ukrainian Institute.
The team, based in Germany, includes the head of the office, a project manager and two communications managers, as well as an external staff member from the Goethe Institute who provides administrative support.
The Ukrainian Institute initiates and implements projects primarily in the fields of arts, culture, and the Ukrainian studies. The Ukrainian Institute represents Ukrainian culture from a decolonial perspective in cooperation with German and international cultural actors. Each year, the Ukrainian Institute focuses on specific themes from Ukrainian history and culture. In 2023, the Ukrainian Institute in Germany will focus on Holodomor, the Revolution of Dignity, and Crimean Tatar culture and society. As a priority, the Ukrainian Institute in Germany aims to develop the Ukrainian studies.
In our work we are guided by these important principles: postcolonial mindset, trauma-sensitive approach, evidence-based work, reciprocity and exchange.
Currently we do not offer Ukrainian language courses. However, we strive to do so in the future. In the meantime, we recommend you a list of resources that will be helpful in learning the Ukrainian language online.
Before 2022, the Ukrainian Institute was funded by the Ukrainian state budget. At present, however, the budget is primarily used for the security expenditures due to the Russian invasion of Ukraine. For this reason, we rely on cooperation and supporters for our projects abroad.
The work of the Ukrainian Institute in Germany is supported by our partner organisations, the Goethe Institute and the Open Society Foundation. This has been made possible, among other things, by the long-term cooperation with these two organisations. Like many other cultural projects and institutions, we are looking for further funding opportunities. We also cooperate with governmental and non-governmental organisations abroad and are open to the new partnerships.
The Ukrainian Institute promotes Ukrainian culture abroad and develops long-term intercultural partnerships. We rely on the principle of the independent and evidence-based expertise, which is ensured through cooperation with designated institutions such as universities, cultural institutions, research centers and individual experts. For example, in the recent years the Ukrainian Institute has worked with the National Art Museum of Ukraine, the National Film Archive of Ukraine Dovzhenko Center, the Khanenko Museum and other organizations in Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Institute does not produce propaganda.
The Institute carries out its programme work independently from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Institute in Germany plans and implements its activities independently from its current partners — the Goethe Institute and the Open Society Foundation.
Our colleagues at the headquarters in Kyiv have expertise in the areas of our work that are relevant to the sectors of culture. The team in Germany focuses on the development and promotion of the projects considering the local context. To this end, it uses its expertise in cultural and project management, intercultural communication, public relations, and years of experience in cultural mediation between Germany and Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Institute focuses on the thematic areas and activities described above. The Berlin office is involved in already planned projects for 2023 as well as plans new events and collaborations for future.
In the following areas we recommend you contact other organisations with relevant expertise:
- Political Activism
- Humanitarian aid to Ukraine
- Counseling and assistance for people seeking protection from Ukraine
- Residences for artists seeking protection (Artists at risk)
- Ukrainian Diaspora
How to participate: as an artist, as a visitor, as a supporter
- New office
The Ukrainian Institute is looking for suitable premises in Berlin for our office and our events. We can send you the detailed information about the premises we need upon request via e-mail to [email protected]
- Media partnerships
The Ukrainian Institute is looking forward to a long-term cooperation with media in Germany and beyond. Please, feel free to contact us: [email protected]
The Ukrainian Institute in Germany is constantly looking for new funding for our projects. Would you like to support our projects? Write to us at: [email protected]
- Projects and events
For our projects and events, we are looking for sustainable cooperations with venues in Berlin and all over Germany. Would you like to host our event? Write us!
If your principles and areas of activity match ours and you would like to plan joint projects, we would be pleased to hear from you: [email protected]. Please, look at the areas in which we do not work as an institution (see last question in the FAQs).
On the website and Ukrainian Institute’s social media – (X) Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. we regularly publish calls for proposals and open calls for projects of the Ukrainian Institute, for which Ukrainian artists can apply.
We are also interested in cooperations with photographers, videographers, graphic designers and PR-agencies who would like to work with us. Write to us at: [email protected].
Why the Ukrainian Institute opened in Germany?
Since its establishment, the Ukrainian Institute has been cooperating with numerous German cultural institutions, such as the Goethe Institute, the Reeperbahn Festival, the Zentrum Liberale Moderne, the Berlinale, and the Frankfurt Book Fair. Over 20 joint projects have already been implemented in Germany for recent years. As one of the leading member states of the European Union, Germany is an important partner for Ukraine on the road to European and Euro-Atlantic integration.
The Ukrainian Institute’s representation abroad will maintain the expansion of existing cooperations and the establishment of new contacts between the institutions, artists and other actors in culture. Especially in view of the ongoing Russian war in Ukraine, as well as the current decolonization processes worldwide, there is a growing need in Germany to better understand Ukraine, its society, culture and history.
The opening of the office in Berlin was welcomed with a broad and positive response among German and international cultural figures, representatives of civil society and the media. The great interest shows the relevance and the necessity of a well-founded mediation of Ukrainian culture.
The Ukrainian Institute in Germany is the first foreign office of the Ukrainian Institute in the world. The next foreign office is planned to be opened in Paris this fall. Further representations in other countries and continents are planned in the future.
Thanks to numerous projects of the Ukrainian Institute abroad, there are already firm cooperations with local institutions in many countries. Opening representative offices with a permanent team in these countries will help to make the Institute’s work and its results more sustainable and the presence of Ukrainian culture more visible.
We, as the first representative office of the Ukrainian Institute, are currently gaining important experience that will be helpful for the other representative offices abroad in the future and contribute to the expansion of the Ukrainian Institute’s network.
The idea of opening representations of the Ukrainian Institute abroad has existed since the establishment of the Ukrainian Institute in 2017. The need for such an institution became obvious after the Revolution of Dignity in 2013 and the occupation of parts of Ukraine by the Russian Federation in 2014. Back then, the public interest in Ukraine around the world has significantly grown. The presence of the Institute abroad has been even more urgent following the full-scale Russian invasion in 2022 and its consequences for Europe and the world.
The firm contacts and cooperations exist with the Federal Agency for Civic Education, the Goethe Institute, the Konrad Adenauer Foundation, the Heinrich Böll Foundation, the Berlinale, the Berlin Festival, the Frankfurt Book Fair, the Leipzig Book Fair, the Reeperbahn Festival, the Albertinum Dresden and the Ludwig Museum Cologne.