Press Release | 19 May 2023

On 19 May 2023, Mme Hélène Duchêne, French Ambassador to the United Kingdom, officially launched Lumière !, a new initiative bringing together under a single banner all our actions to support mobility to the UK in the fields of cultural and scientific cooperation.

“Speak to peoples, speak to young people, overhaul, renew ourselves, do more, engage in outreach. In a word, we must modernize. That means defining innovative models for a diplomacy of influence. For example, in the United Kingdom, where I’ve come from, we’re launching the Lumière ! programme.” – Catherine Colonna, Minister for Europe and Foreign Affairs.

“Lumière ! is a timely and necessary initiative which is part of a drive to give our cultural, scientific and academic diplomacy a new lease of life” Hélène Duchêne, French Ambassador to the United Kingdom.

This framework programme brings together and spotlights the many artistic, cultural, academic and scientific cooperation activities carried out by the French Embassy in the UK, the Institut français du Royaume-Uni in London, the Institut français d’Ecosse in Edinburgh and the Maison française d’Oxford.

Developed in collaboration with numerous British partners, the programmes also draw on a network of host venues and residencies such as the Maison française, the European Bioinformatics Institute and Churchill College, Cambridge.

Aimed at artists, writers, students, researchers and professionals in the cultural and creative industries, the Lumière ! programme deploys a broad spectrum of provision, detailed in the (non-exhaustive) list below.


Visual arts and design

  • Franco-British fund Fluxus Art Projects, for exhibition venues and curators
  • Magnetic artists’ residency programme, launched in 2022 under the aegis of Fluxus
  • Meet-the-professionals sessions Art Matters, Design in an Expanded Field, Look-Out and (Re)thinking pedagogies


Theatre and dance

  • Cross-Channel Theatre programme for the translation into English of Francophone playwrights’ texts
  • En Scène ! programme to support French performances



  • Diaphonique trilateral support fund (France/UK/Ireland) for contemporary classical music
  • Les Salons en Musique, a series of concerts involving chamber music and contemporary experimentation



  • Burgess publication assistance programme, which supports the release of some 15 titles translated from French in the UK every year
  • discussion series Books For Thought in the field of humanities and social sciences
  • B2B meetings organized with the Bureau international de l’édition française, particularly during the London Book Fair


Cinema and broadcasting

  • Broadcasting discussion and immersion programmes in partnership with the CNC and BFI
  • ICC Immersion programme


Student mobility

  • Scholarships at the Maison française d’Oxford and the European Bioinformatics Institute in Cambridge
  • France Alumni networks



  • Seed meetings to initiate or strengthen bilateral cooperation projects between research-team coordinators
  • Hubert Curien programme for developing scientific and technological exchanges between French and British laboratories
  • Churchill College Fellowship, a programme for hosting French researchers
  • French Education and Research Network







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