Branding European Cities and Regions
Edited by Gregory Ashworth and Mihalis Kavaratzis
Chapter 10: The ‘Be Berlin’ Campaign: Old Wine in New Bottles or Innovative Form of Participatory Place Branding?
Claire Colomb and Ares Kalandides INTRODUCTION The branding campaign is a first step to present ourselves in a clearer, more visible and decisive way. ‘be Berlin’ means that we want to show Berlin as a casual and relaxed, international and open metropolis, radiating joy and creativity and where it is a pleasure to live in. It is the people that make up Berlin – the Berliners. They are Berlin. They are the ambassadors of our city. . . Berlin has 3.4 million facets, as many as there are inhabitants. Thus Berlin has many stories to tell. Stories of a successful change – despite all the difficulties that also characterise Berlin; stories of a change for the best. For as long as this city has existed, it has blossomed, lived and survived, because people came here to live their dreams and realise their plans. (Speech of the Mayor of Berlin, Klaus Wowereit, for the launch of the ‘be Berlin’ branding campaign on 11 March 2008) On 11 March 2008 the Berlin Mayor Klaus Wowereit publicly launched a new campaign for Berlin under the slogan ‘be Berlin’ (in English), following a call for ideas launched by the Mayor’s office in search of a new ‘brand’ for Berlin. Why does it still matter for Berlin’s political leaders to search for a new image, a new slogan, a new ‘brand’ twenty years after the fall of the Wall and the reunification of the city? This need for a new ‘Berlin brand’ seemed to ignore what happened during twenty...
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