ZeLIG School for Documentary, Bozen/Bolzano, Italy

April, 26 – 29 2018

Dear colleagues,

Spring, the Dolomites of South Tyrol and thirty years of ZeLIG School for Documentary await you in April 2018 for the follow-up to our first, highly successful Teaching Documentary Symposium that took place in Cardiff back in November 2014. At the end of that inspiring event GEECT Chair Bert Beyens announced that a second symposium on documentary training should take place within the next five years. And here we are!

We (Heidi Gronauer & John Burgan) are keen to build on our successful collaboration in 2014 to create a second symposium on documentary training, this time at ZeLIG in Bolzano, Italy. We want to invite you all very warmly to South Tyrol, the mother region of ZeLIG school for documentary, to take a deep look at the newest developments in the field of documentary which will profoundly influence our training methods and contents.


The conference will be held from Thursday 26th (arrival day) till Sunday 29th (departure day) of April 2018.

Documentary is always shifting and changing, so we propose the following key themes:

  • Documentary Storytelling for a Changing Industry: thinking about distribution strategies & crowdsourcing from the start
  • Documentary Storytelling – New Forms: interdisciplinary / participative forms, VR, transmedia, augmented reality, “slow” cinema
  • New Markets: Netflix, Amazon, VoD, Web, Streaming
  • New Formats: long-form series, investigative author-driven docs

There are clearly other related issues, once again we’re aware how rapidly the business / industry is in a state of flux and the creative challenges and possibilities that await our graduates.

Generally speaking: we found the format we used in Cardiff – keynotes in the morning followed by breakout discussions in the afternoons had great resonance as people felt they could go deeper into the debates and issues.

On the arrival day, Thursday, 26th of April, there will be a Masterclass at the ZeLIG school for documentary in the afternoon. The topic and speaker will be announced soon.


We plan to invite up to 4 external experts to present the main keynotes and are already considering some potential candidates for these; but we’re also very eager to get your input. Within the proposed topics (see above) do you have specific proposals? As with all GEECT conferences, the primary framework for this symposium is specifically how we teach, so what are the main issues you engage with in your pedagogical approaches?

Also, at the end of each day, we will conclude with the ever-popular tradition of shorter “Best Kept Secrets” presentations, where GEECT / CILECT delegates share specific examples of exercises and workshops from their own film schools on the subject of teaching documentary, with a particular focus on new forms and new media. Last time in Cardiff we had many excellent examples to choose from, so we are keen to compose the best possible programme for Bolzano. These sessions last 15 minutes each so that we can include as many of them as possible in the limited time available.


  • Please submit concrete suggestions, names of particular experts (with contact details where possible) you believe could be both interesting and inspiring for all of us. Deadline: December 22th 2017.  
  • Individual GEECT / CILECT delegate presentations for “Best Kept Secrets” – short descriptions, please. Deadline: January 15th 2018.

Please send your contributions to both of us: and



Bolzano is a small city of 100.000 inhabitants and there are only a limited number of hotels. Therefore, participants will be hosted in three different hotels in the city centre. (We have pre-booked rooms at a discounted rate which are reserved untill the 10th of February 2018).

Therefore, the deadline for registration & payment is the 10th of February 2018.

(After this date, we cannot guarantee accommodation in the three Conference hotels, and those who register after the 10th of February might be located outside the city centre, and will probably be asked to pay an extra sum).


the delegate fee covers:

  • 3 nights with bed & breakfast accommodation in 4* hotel
  • lunch (Friday & Saturday); dinner (Thursday, Friday, Saturday evening); refreshments (tea/coffee etc.) during the symposium.
  • Transport to the NOI Tech Park on Friday and Saturday
  • Shuttle busses to and from Verona at fixed times on arrival and departure day

GEECT Member Delegate: 400 Euro per delegate (full member schools in good standing may send up to two delegates, and candidate and partner members in good standing may send one delegate, at the subsidised rate).

CILECT members from other Regions (CARA, CAPA, CIBA or CNA) can apply for a Fee Waiver: please contact Stan Semerdjiev, (places are limited and are assigned on a first-come-first-served basis).

Delegate Full fee: 700 Euro per delegate: non-members/members not in good standing and any additional delegates from member schools.

Formal registration details will be made available shortly on the Conference website at

Location: Main Venue: NOI Technology Park of the Autonomous Province of Bolzano 

The Technology Park is the brand-new Innovation Centre in South Tyrol created inside the Industrial Building Alumix. NOI hosts also the South Tyrol Film Commission and the IDM Film Fund (one of the local sponsors of our Symposium).


Bolzano is situated beautifully in the middle of the Dolomites, but being surrounded by mountains however means that there are no airports nearby. It’s therefore much easier and also much more ecologically sustainable to travel to Bolzano by rail, and for those of you who don’t know it already – the route through the mountains is simply beautiful. On arrival in Bolzano, all the hotels are within walking distance of the train station.

For those who must arrive by plane, the best airport for Bolzano is Verona (VRN) which is around 150 km away.  We will organise a couple of shuttle busses from Verona to Bolzano on arrival day and also bring you back on the departure day. Once we have an overview of flight arrival and departure times in Verona, we will indicate when busses will depart and arrive in Bolzano.

Other airports include Innsbruck (150 km), Milan Bergamo (220km) and Venice, Milan & Bologna (300 km). We can’t offer a shuttle service for these locations, but they are all connected to Bolzano by train or South Tyrol Bus. Don’t assume that the airport that appears to be closest geographically to Bolzano automatically has the quickest or most direct train journey! We will issue further travel advice once we have an overview where delegates are landing.

We look forward to seeing you in Bolzano!!


Heidi Gronauer & John Burgan 

ZeLIG School for documentary, television and new media – bozen/bolzano

Brennerstr. 20/d Via Brennero I — 39100 Bozen/Bolzano — ITALY 

Lotte Gibitz, conference coordinator: T +39-0471-977930;

John Burgan, conference program:

Heidi Gronauer, conference program:




IDM Film Fund & Commission of South Tyrol

Città di Bolzano / Stadt Bozen


More Info soon.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s