24.07
2014
TOP 10 most excellent Latvian personalities named

TOP 10 most excellent Latvian personalities named

Latvian people have named three legendary contemporaries, the composer Raimonds Pauls, the former state president Vaira Vīķe-Freiberga and the world-famous former goaltender Artūrs Irbe, among the ten most excellent personalities, who form the future history of this Baltic nation, a survey launched by the Latvian Institute and television channel HISTORY shows.

 

The seven other outstanding Latvian contemporary personalities are the painter Džemma Skulme, the poetress Māra Zālīte, the academician Jānis Stradiņš, the theatre director Alvis Hermanis, the film director Jānis Streičs, the poet Jānis Peters as well as Boris and Inara Teterev Foundation who support distinguished and socially important charitable initiatives.

“This type of survey helps us notice the truly valuable things around us, that we might have otherwise missed. It is also a way to glorify Latvia’s brightest people. I would like to thank the organizers of this survey, our partners, jury members and, of course, all those who voted. Interestingly, the opinions of our jury and voters were very close. We hope that this uplifting survey would become an annual tradition,” noted the Director of the Latvian Institute Karina Pētersone.

 

The aim of the survey, which was composed of a list of 100 specially chosen personalities, considering their reputation, contribution to the development of economy or any particular field, introduction of innovations and, in effect, the promotion of Latvia abroad, was to strengthen the national identity, highlight inspiring role models and contribute to a positive image of this Baltic country.

Raimonds Pauls, the accomplished pianist, jazz musician and composer, who has been a symbol and a legend of Latvia for a long time, expressed gratitude to the organisers of the survey and people who voted for him, while academician Jānis Stradiņš, an outstanding chemist, a historian of chemistry, science, and culture, a science manager, and an influential public figure, stressed that he was particularly pleased that a special category was allocated to science which, according to him, is still an undervalued field in Latvia. He also said that it would be advisable to hold such type of surveys each year as it would highlight achievements of Latvians in different fields.

 

Nearly 5000 Latvians took part in the online survey by choosing their favourite candidate in five categories: culture, politics, sports, science and entrepreneurship. The results of the survey were partly dependent on the decision of the jury panel comprising representatives of the Latvian Institute and television channel HISTORY as well as other competent experts.

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09.07
2014
Welcome Video: Latvian Presidency of the Council of the EU

This introductory video was made to honour the important role Latvia will take over starting from January 1, 2015, for six whole months: the Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

In order to introduce the country that is going to lead its 27 sisters and to make sure you would get the right impression about us, Latvians, we decided to start with something each and every leader needs: honesty.

 

So it might be quite cold here for half of the year, and, yes, Latvia has zero great mountains compared to other countries, nor is it the biggest of them all in size; true, Latvians are rather reserved at first. But then again – these are the factors that have shaped our view of the world, our character and culture. We are mostly not the ones to show off, but quite perfectionist at the same time; our winters have taught us to plan ahead and also given us the privilege to enjoy all four seasons.

In truth, we have much to offer the world: be it some of the finest classical musicians, opera singers and ballet dancers, Art Nouveau architecture, lush forests, innovations, the fastest internet in Europe, carefully nurtured traditions, or the truly friendly soul you will find hidden behind every Latvian’s serious facial expression.

That is how and what we are. Pleased to meet you! Honestly.

 

In truth, we have much to offer the world: be it some of the finest classical musicians, opera singers and ballet dancers, Art Nouveau architecture, lush forests, innovations, the fastest internet in Europe, carefully nurtured traditions, or the truly friendly soul you will find hidden behind every Latvian’s serious facial expression.

That is how and what we are. Pleased to meet you! Honestly.

 

This video was made by the Latvian Institute in cooperation with the Secretariat of the Latvian Presidency of the Council of the European Union.

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03.07
2014
Extension of “Born in Riga – Famous Worldwide” photo gallery celebrated at Splendid Palace

Extension of “Born in Riga – Famous Worldwide” photo gallery celebrated at Splendid Palace

On July 2 the director of the Latvian Institute Karina Pētersone participated in the opening of an extension to the said gallery together with the distinguished musicians Gidons Krēmers and Inese Galante, as well as the Deputy Mayor of Rīga Andris Ameriks and the chairwoman of the board of SIA “Rīgas Nami” Vineta Verika. Portraits of singers Inese Galante, Elīna Garanča, akkordeonist Ksenija Sidorova and violinist Baiba Skride were added to the gallery.

 

The concept of a symbolic wall of fame for the Rīga city natives famous worldwide was put forward by SIA “Rīgas Nami” in cooperation with the Latvian Institute already in 2011, when the first part of the gallery was opened. It includes celebrities such as the chemist Vilhelms Ostvalds, engineer Frīdrihs Canders, film director Sergejs Eizenšteins, sculptor Vera Muhina, philosopher Isaiah Berlin, chess master Mihails Tāls, hockey player Kārlis Skrastiņš, ballet dancer Mihails Barišņikovs, composer Raimonds Pauls and others. All of the large format portaits are complemented by interactive screens containing biography of the celebrities in question.

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30.01
2013
More Than 74% of Foreign Online Media Publications about Latvia in 2012 Were Positive

According to the media monitoring data by Latvian Institute, in 2012, 74,2% of all articles by foreign online media mentioning Latvia have been positive.
In total, there have been 4599 publications about Latvia by internet versions of foreign media; 3413 of them depicted Latvia in a positive light. Compared to 2011, the total number of publications has decreased by 25%. However, the proportion of positive ones has increased. In 2011, the proportion of positive articles was 70,1%.


The topics most mentioned by foreign online media in 2012 were economic matters and internal policy matters with the total ratio of 27% and 23% respectively. Society and foreign policy matters were reflected in 14% each of all articles; meanwhile Latvian sports were mentioned in 12% of publications. Other topics – culture, tourism, environment, and relations with Russia – formed a total of 10% of all foreign media articles about Latvia.
Most foreign online media articles, 1076 in total, were published by Estonian and Lithuanian media. It is followed by Russian media with 705 publications – 46% of them were positive. A little less, 677 articles, was published by American media with an 87% positive ratio.


Latvia was praised the most in tourist publications with 99% of them being positive; it was followed by culture (96%), economy (85%), foreign policy matters (85%) and sports (81%). The most negative articles, 73% in total, were connected with Latvia’s relations with Russia. However, such articles comprised only 3% of the total number of online publications.
“The results of the monitoring are not very surprising. The attention to Latvia logically has concerned its rapid economic development in 2012. Though there have been critical publications as well. The economic growth this year is expected to be slower, so it would be wise to divert the accumulated foreign media attention to, for example, Latvian culture. The upcoming Song and Dance Festival will be a good opportunity to represent Latvia with more confidence. It is necessary because, even if we hope for a never-ending economic growth, Latvia will not be able to be recognised for its leap forever, besides the leap itself has mixed internal perceptions,” the Director of the Latvian Institute Karina Pētersone explains.


Latvia garnered the most attention in February when a referendum to grant State language status to Russian language was held. A total of 857 articles were made by foreign media about Latvia in February 2012, furthermore it was the only month of the year when society matters were more popular than economic ones. Foreign media have not been tendentious on the referendum question, evident by a 70% positive article ratio.


It is impossible to measure the frequency of Latvia appearing in all media and all languages of the world; that is why the Latvian Institute concentrated its search mechanisms on the most popular foreign media channels in world’s major languages. Monitoring included sources in English, German, Swedish, French, Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Indian, Japanese, Russian, Ukrainian and other languages of the world.

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