Emma D'Costa

Programme Officer, Commonwealth Writers

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I have worked with the Commonwealth Foundation as a consultant since 1995, managing a range of events and projects, before taking up my current post of Programme Officer, Commonwealth Writers, in 2012.

I have many years’ experience of curating exhibitions, organising events and managing arts projects with a focus on world cultures. As Visual Arts Officer at the Commonwealth Institute I curated a large number of international exhibitions. As Head of Project Development at London-based arts organisation Cultural Co-operation, I worked with artists from London’s national and faith communities, as well as putting together talks and spoken word programmes for the Music Village Festivals, and organising a major conference on diaspora literature in 2005.

Summary of work

Commonwealth Writers is the cultural initiative of the Commonwealth Foundation, an international development organisation based in London. As part of my work for Commonwealth Writers, I manage the Commonwealth Short Story Prize and our translation initiatives, including the Bangla-English and Kiswahili English Literary Translation projects, as well as developing new and existing partnerships. 

Summary of work to develop

I'm keen to develop Commonwealth Writers' work in translation, extending it to other under-translated, but major, languages in the Commonwealth. I am also interested to engage with as many genres of storytellers as possible, especially those with an interest in activism and stories with a social impact. We would also like to explore new ways of working and collaborating, particularly virtually. 



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