European Association of Cultural Researchers e.V.

Lidia Varbanova

Program Director, MA in Management of Performing Arts and Industries, National Academy of Theatre and Film Arts, Sofia, Bulgaria
Consultant, Educator & Researcher in Strategy, Policy and Entrepreneurship / Arts, Culture & Creative Industries

• Over twenty years professional experience in strategic development, capacity building, project management and entrepreneurship in the arts, culture, cultural heritage and creative industries as consultant, educator and researcher in over 50 countries.
• Extensive experience in lecturing internationally, including online: leading educational courses and training modules on: strategic management, cultural entrepreneurship, arts management, cultural policy, creative industries, marketing arts and culture, financing and fundraising.
• Extensive consulting on diverse and complex local and international projects on strategy, governance structure and management at all levels and diverse types of companies and networks. Excellent capacity in strategizing, project planning, monitoring and reporting.
• Over 15 years of professional experience at senior level, working with recognized international foundations, organizations and networks.
• Field experience, working with public cultural institutions, national cultural and heritage organizations, nonprofit organizations and creative businesses in Europe, Central Asia and North America, in both developing and developed countries with different economic, political and multicultural context.
• Very good knowledge and understanding of international policies and instruments in the field of culture, heritage, cultural diversity and creative industries, implemented and promoted by the European Commission, UNESCO, the European Cultural Foundation, and the Council of Europe.
• Extensive experience as a Board member of prominent professional associations and networks.
• Proven international, collaborative, multidisciplinary and applied character of research work and publications. Strong abilities to fundraise for research workmultiple national and international bodies.
• Profound experience and knowledge in successfully consulting, leading, creating and managing innovative educational programs and management projects, including online courses.
• Considerable track records as a keynote speaker, workshop leader, and moderator. Excellent representation, negotiation and communication skills.
• Excellent experience in knowledge-sharing platforms and online portals, especially related to culture, heritage, arts, international cultural cooperation and networking.
• Academic education BA, MA, PhD levels.
• Recognized team-orientated leadership skills, collaborative and motivating behavior.
• Substantial and ongoing volunteer work for cultural and social causes in Canada, Europe and Central Asia.

Main research fields:
  • Cultural policies / arts administration
  • Development / 'South-North' relations
  • Economics / creative industries
  • Education / training
  • European cooperation / integration
  • Financing / sponsoring / philanthropy
  • Management / marketing
  • New media / digital culture
  • Perform. arts (music, theatre, dance)
Institutional background:
  • Arm's-length bodies (e.g. cultural institutes)


Sofia City Province