What do cities want/need/like for their creative city of the future? 



Susanna Tommila, City of Espoo (FI)

“My creative City of the future has culture as part of everyone’s lives, has art and culture embedded in the city structure, and promotes art and culture as a way of consuming, instead of buying things”

Matt Corrigan and Sue Bell, City of Lincoln (UK)

“My creative city [of the future] wants to use cultural activity to drive tourism and investment. We are achieving this in Lincoln through our Cultural Destinations programme, annual themes, and a new art fund we have set up inspired by our study visit to Sofia”.

Ib Christensen, City of Aarhus (DK)

“My creative city of the future wants to make arts and culture set a new agenda for a variety of city policies; this is an important part of legacy from ECoC Aarhus 2017 where all sectors in Aarhus participated in cultural projects dealing with their particular policy field. There is a common consciousness about arts and culture being able to contribute to deal with overall European societal challenges.”

Heleen Vanden Bergh, City of Antwerp (BE)

"My creative city of the future likes to facilitate its citizens to enjoy culture, art, leisure and education in high quality and innovative public buildings.
My creative city of the future likes to challenge people of all ages to participate in the cocreation of social-cultural projects, in order to empower them."

Jaakko Laurila, City of Tampere (FI)

"My creative city of the future doesn’t only bring culture to neighbourhoods, but helps local communities to bring the culture there by themselves. We saw both of these aspects developed well in Birmingham, where Tampere was inspired to use events to bring people together. To achieve this we need more fast and flexible funding models which allow us to bring communities together with artists. We also need simple education on event production and funding options."

Tuula Haavisto, City of Helsinki (FI)

"My creative city of the future will involve citizens in both planning and producing. This means that the city is not only a producer of cultural services but also a platform for citizens and other actors to present their activities."

Martine Meire, City of Oostende (BE)

"My creative city of the future invites citizens to take part in every aspect of life, in a process of co-creation and active citizenship. We strongly believe in the strength of communities and neighbourhoods, even in our individualized societies. From a large-scale cultural survey in Ostend we learned that neighbourhoods still show social cohesion and are breeding places for creative urban cultural interventions. On a study visit to Vilnius within the Culture for Cities and Regions project of EUROCITIES, we met a very enthusiastic cultural entrepreneur who built a container in the woods to educate the neighbourhood in a cultural participation process. It is a small-scale project with long lasting, sustainable results.
Citizens engage in urban labs to shape their neighbourhoods within the city’s strategic goals. It is a challenge to include new citizens, senior citizens, underprivileged groups in cultural life and trigger them to participate. The creative city of the future facilitates access to culture by tearing down financial and psychologic thresholds, by uniting the common humanitarian values of democracy which find creative expression through culture.
I strongly believe in the small-scale approach of communities which together shape a city.
And cities, as we all know, are the building blocks of the European future. A future where culture has to take a prominent place."

John Svensson, City of Lidingö (SE)

"My creative city of the future needs to give all citizens the means for good social health and inclusion.
Local history and heritage is far more inclusive than the national heritage. It is far easier to access and be part of for any new citizen.
Our local heritage is full of examples where we have faced and overcome bigger challenges than the ones we face today. History is also full of examples when immigration and different cultural backgrounds will over time become our common heritage.
In my creative city of the future we will use our long, rich and various heritage as a tool to create cohesion among our citizens and inclusion of our new citizens, no matter their origin."

Giorgia Boldrini, City of Bologna (IT)


"My creative city of the future needs ... less bureaucracy, and more creative people!"


Christine O’Toole, City of Belfast (UK)

"This is Belfast’s vision for a creative city of the future:
Collaborate, Make, Create, Innovate.
Dream, Drive, Dare, Thrive.
Cluster, Support, Invest, Devenir Plus Fort.
Our only limitation is the law.
Trust the artist.
Work for their freedom.
Beal Feirste needs art to lead, to colour, to flow through its alleys and arteries, to oxygenate its people, to make it dance.
May we then be brave and bold still, and our lens be tuned to see a creative beautiful future."