Ghent, candidate European Capital of Culture 2030

Ghent, candidate European Capital of Culture 2030

The City of Ghent is going all out for the title of European Cultural Capital in 2030. It is about more than the title. The city also wants to develop a strong project through culture that tackles the challenges and seizes the opportunities for the city. The opportunities and challenges were mapped out via a broad exploratory survey that IDEA Consult carried out this spring among more than 400 key figures. The final report of this survey is the working material for the next phase, in which an overarching concept is developed for the candidacy. This second phase starts now and runs until June 2022. Afterwards, in a third phase, a first 'bid book' will be prepared, which will be submitted in 2024.

‘The 30 of 2030’

The driving force behind this second phase will be a group of 30 enthusiastic people who will start working with the results of the survey and will work towards a distinctive and convincing narrative and umbrella concept for the candidacy of Ghent 2030 by the end of May at the latest. The 30 of 2030' is composed through an open call. The City of Ghent is looking for strong profiles from the broad cultural and creative sector and interested parties from other sectors, with a passion for culture and motivated to work together in an intensive process in order to find the story of Ghent 2030. The selection takes into account a diversity of profiles and balances, partly based on the results of the survey.

Not an island

The 30 of 2030' do not operate on an island. Through thematic sessions, the 30 will engage with other actors and sectors and also receive additional input through two 'open 2030 forums' in which anyone can participate. We encourage interested services, organisations, institutions and networks to look at the working material and provide their input/reflections to the Group of 30.

Active and transparent communication about all meetings and work will be provided through the Ghent 2030 newsletter and the Ghent 2030 web platform that will be launched in spring 2022.

Process Team

This follow-up process is coordinated by a mixed process team in line with the results of the survey. It is composed of employees of the City, six committed initiators from the broad cultural sector (Fatih De Vos, Tina De Gendt, Badra Djait, Noemi De Clercq, Emiel Lenaert and Frederik Sioen) and supervisors from IDEA Consult. The members of this process team facilitate and supervise the various consultation moments of both "the 30 of 2030" and the "open 2030 forums", and also actively participate in them themselves.

The non-profit association Ghent 2030

For Ghent 2030, a separate structure will be set up later on in the form of an 'externally autonomous agency' (or EVA vzw) with extensive structural involvement of stakeholders from the public, profit and non-profit sectors in both the General Assembly and the Board of Directors.  This structure secures, manages and guards the business, organisational and content-related framework within which Ghent 2030 must take shape, but gives the project team all the room it needs to take concrete form.

The formal founding of this EVA association is planned for May or June. Shortly afterwards, a Ghent 2030 team will be set up in phases to coordinate and concretise the further preparation of the Ghent 2030 candidacy in direct consultation and cooperation with as many actors and sectors as possible.