European Capitals of CultureΠοιειν Και Πραττειν - create and do

Istanbul 2010



The Benefits for Istanbul – as stated on the official website for Istanbul 2010


Thesis about some of the benefits of Istanbul becoming European Capital of Culture in 2010?

* From 2006 onwards the name of Istanbul will be associated with culture and the arts all over the world.
* As Turkey moves ahead with the process of its candidacy for the European Union, the projects that will be realized will demonstrate that Istanbul, the symbol of the country, has been interacting with European culture for hundreds of years.
* The city’s cultural heritage will be managed in a sustainable manner and it will become even more of a magnet than ever.
* Istanbul will achieve lasting gains in the fields of urban renewal, urban living and environmental and social development.
* New museums will be established to protect and display our cultural assets and historical buildings will be renovated, given new roles and opened to the public.
* Istanbullites will embrace new artistic disciplines. Young talented people will have the opportunity to become more closely involved in artistic creativity.
* Jobs will be created for a large number of people ranging from communications to organization, education, design, management and creative fields.
* Those who come to Istanbul for cultural and artistic projects will visit the city’s cultural riches, mosques, churches, palaces and museums.
* Cultural tourism will be invigorated and develop. (Educated, cultured tourists spend three times as much as normal tourists. This means that, as a European Capital of Culture, Istanbul will have a great tourism potential.)
* Many people from the world of culture and the arts, together with members of the print and visual media, will come to Istanbul from Europe and different countries all around the world.
* This will make a positive contribution to the promotion and branding of Istanbul.
* Being selected as a European Capital of Culture will give a boost to the city’s economic relations with Europe as well as contributing to its cultural relations.
* With the renovation that will take place, the administrators and administered will join together, hand in hand, sharing their knowledge and experience, to develop a long-term sustainable model for the future.
* Through discovering the beauty of their city, Istanbullites will be proud to live in such a city.


The uniqueness of Istanbul 2010 is that it started out from creating a NGO and therefore represents a bottom-up process until the designation to be a European Capital of Culture besides Pecs, Hungary and Essen, Germany in 2010 was given.

To understand the various layers of history as evident in a city like Istanbul it should be reminded that there Hellenism, Byzantine, Ottoman and modern Turkey all of which have left their own unique imprint and which are still influencing how the city views itself in terms of history.

In terms of the complexities and problems to be faced in the present, the key question is how these problems can be overcome with the help of culture. Istanbul wants to set here an example. It can be done best by being a grass root, bottom up movement to allow for the participation of everyone.

Istanbul is a city of poetry and philosophy with many outstanding scholars and poets having created the basis for the approach adopted for 2010. In particular Aximander's definition of the four key elements, namely air, earth, water and fire shall be used to adopt the cultural program accordingly.

The Capital of Culture in Istanbul will not focus merely on the centre, but as well on the poor districts. Moreover it is the aim to involve the youth studying in 28 universities which exist in Istanbul. It gives an idea of the dimensions involved.



Georg F. Simet, Neuss University for International Business, Neuss (2010) "Assessment of the European Capitals of Cultural Programme of Instanbul 2010 - Mirroring the City's Cultural Change and Diversification". Presentation made at the Joint Conference of the University Network of the European Capitals of Culture and the Compostela Group of Universities, University of Pecs, 14 - 15 October 2010

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