The European Leadership Summit (ELS), happening on 4-7 April 2024 in Tallinn, Estonia, brings a diverse international group of 250 Regional Contacts and community builders from across the Regional Network in an inspiring and collaborative learning atmosphere where they share their experiences, hard-won expertise, successes, and challenges drawn from their year-round efforts fostering community events and initiatives inspired by Burning Man’s 10 Principles.
Participation is by invitation only.
We are currently accepting art and performance proposals until 1 March at 23:59 EEST
Share your insights and creativity with other Burning Man community builders at the ELS in Tallinn, Estonia. We are currently welcoming offers of art installations, performances, and experiences. Learn more about proposing your ideas for the ELS!
2024 Theme: BEing and Bridging: Together We Gather
The Invocation: Together let us gather the meeting points and thresholds of being. From far and near and places we have yet to visit, let us bridge the spaces within and among us. Let us step across the simple planks, the clever footbridges, and the fanciful thresholds we have built, and stand together in a new space of our own making.
The Moment: On this the 25th year of the Burning Man Regional Network, we find ourselves standing at a kind of threshold that bridges where we have come from and where we want to go. We will likely get there by doing what we have always done: making shit up together, trying stuff, and making it real in ways that open the heart, seem like magic, but come about with a lot of very real sweat, tears and laughter! We will also very likely do it by building bridges. In fact, each of us is a kind of bridge, welcoming others to join us and sometimes even crossing ourselves(!) to discover what awaits us on the other side.
Questions to Ponder: “If we are each a bridge of sorts and we choose to gather, what do you call a gathering of bridges?” And how many bridges does it take to create a magical meeting space where we can be truly ourselves AND together in the world at the very same time?
The Proposal: Amidst political partisanship, war, and techno-corporate mumbo-jumbo realities that are churned out these days on an assembly line of plastic-wrapped electronic consumer reality shows, alternate fact sound bites, short-attention spans, and AI-generated disposable products, let’s try to do something different. Let’s gather authentically, with curiosity, with love, and particularly daring imagination! Then, while we are together enjoying just being together in person again, let’s contemplate what bridges need to be built and what kind of futures are worth creating.
The Heart of the Matter: Our theme this year reflects on the joy of gathering in person again and our work bringing people together: to be wildly creative, to do good work in the world, to find themselves, to celebrate differences, to find commonalities, and discover our interconnected humanity in relationship with the natural world.
But what is “together”? Well, that’s up to you. It doesn’t mean we always agree. We are a community of contrarians and contradictions, after all. “Togetherness” can be a fertile meeting place at the continental shelves of embodied consciousness, where diversity of experience, varied perspectives, and human potential all commingle in nutrient-rich waters of encouragement and possibility. Part of that is just making the space to be and do and share!
The Invitation: How many bridges does it take to create a space of togetherness?
Answer: Just one…and an invitation to join in the act of creation.
Past Years’ Summits
The annual European Leadership Summit both strengthens the international community and showcases an exemplary creative and cultural hub to ELS participants. Previous Host Communities include:
- Online in 2020 (Explore videos of presentations here),
- Aarhus, Denmark in 2019 (Explore videos of plenary presentations here),
- Nantes, France in 2018 (Check out videos of presentations and breakout sessions here),
- Stockholm in 2017 (Check out a video of “Can Burning Man Spark Political Change?” keynote presentation from Stockholm),
- Barcelona in 2016,
- Amsterdam in 2015 (Explore videos of presentations and breakout sessions here), and
- Berlin in 2014.