Promoting Excellence in the Discourse on Europe. Since 1995, the Erasmus EuroMedia Awards are granted to outstanding media productions contributing to the development of a European society and value system. [learn more]
Special Awards 2011
Lapp Hat

Documentary by Saniola Productions (Norway): Guo Saniola Bjerk (director, producer, cinematographer), Torstein Nodland (cinematographer), Morten Daae (film editor), Torkil Lund Johansen (composer)

awarded with the Erasmus EuroMedia Special Award for Education and Ethics
sponsored by eco-c

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Laudatio by Karina Kaiblinger, eco-c

‘We cannot NOT communicate.’, says one of the five axioms of communication from Paul Watzlawick. And we feel this everytime when we are interacting with people. However, communication does not necessarily mean to talk. Communication does also mean to listen.

Guro Saniola Bjerk took her time and listened. She listened carefully. She listened actively and with a lot of attention to what the people from Finnmark had to tell. It is an honour for ECo-C, the European Communication Certificate, to take the opportunity to award Guro Saniola Bjerk and Saniola Productions for their docu report ‘Lapp Hat’. Both, Guro Saniola Bjerk and ECo-C are in each of their own ways involved in bringing different people closer to each other – by listening to them and their concerns. Guro Saniola Bjerk as a dedicated journalist and film director and ECo-C as an educational program in communication and personal skills.

All over Europe public discourses are so often conducted on a demagogic level when it comes to the topic how different ethnic groups and civilisations should live together within one region or nation. The discourses are dominated by one certain group, it is played with prejudices, with the fears and the concerns of the people, with different interests.

Guro Saniola Bjerk did not choose this way for her docu report. Her approach is characterised by sensitivity and awareness to the topic and tactfulness to the people. She listened to all people and gave room to every individual feeling and opinion. She chose the dialectic way. That’s why Lapp Hat is that special. It stands for a discourse which is not characterised by opportunistic interests but by an ethical approach.
Therefore ‘Lapp Hat’ deserves to be awarded by the Erasmus Euromedia Special Award for Education and Ethics 2011.


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Documentary, interactive website and educational movie by With WINGS and ROOTS (Germany): Christina Antonakos-Wallace (director), Cano Turan (associate producer), Jacqueline Görgen (co-director), Amanda Nguyen (associate producer), Cesar Naranjo (web and new media), Ludwig Kann nicht (web and new media), Regina Knoll (production assistant)

awarded with the

Erasmus Euromedia 2011 Special Award for Culture of Diversity

Laudatio by Marko Ivanisin, University of Maribor

With WINGS and ROOTS is an independent media project that explores what gets termed assimilation in the US and integration in Germany. Set in Berlin and New York, two cities and nations struggling with immigration and national identity, this educational project tells stories of children of immigrants from diverse backgrounds who are striving to expand their definitions of belonging.

The main product of the project is the feature-length documentary that by vérité footage and in-depth conversations gives insight into six protagonists personal rites of passage, each facing questions of identity and belonging, and finding different ways to root him/herself.

The film is supported by the website that serves as collaboration and communication tool. These didactical elements are well stressed and supported by activities in most popular virtual social networks.

By that only the educational aim of the project is obvious but then topped with what is called “educational material” and that could as well be independent products.

Namely, a 22-minutes documentary presents voices of ten young people who in interviews reflect on their family’s immigration process, growing up with multiple cultures, and how they see themselves today. It is a tool that is aimed to “lead discussions on complex identities, the impact of immigration, and many forms of racism, in the context of both societies’ increasing diversity.”

An accompanying discussion guide, a questionnaire that has been created for use with high schools students, university classrooms, and in community settings reflects the high complexity of the presented issues and in-depth insight of the project.

As blend of clear educational approach and transcultural content the With Wings and Roots production is honored with the Erasmus EuroMedia Special Award for Culture of Diversity.