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Urban Strategies for Culture-Driven Growth

Co-creating a European Capital of Culture

Nils Wåhlin, Maria Kapsali, Malin H. Näsholm and Tomas Blomquist

Over the past three decades, the European Capital of Culture has grown into one of the most ambitious cultural programs in the world. Through the promotion of cultural diversity across the continent, the program fosters mutual understanding and intercultural dialogue among citizens, thereby increasing their sense of belonging to a community. This insightful book outlines potential avenues through which culture and creativity can raise the imaginative capability of citizens and harness opportunities tied to what the book calls ‘culture-driven growth’.
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Chapter 7: Building a milieu for city marketing and branding

Nils Wåhlin, Maria Kapsali, Malin H. Näsholm and Tomas Blomquist


In this chapter we use marketing projects to describe the milieu-network who support the program. The social networks and the broader communications strategy were used not only to promote the local artistic activity but also to attract attention and participation outside the boundaries of the local community. We used social network analysis (SNA) to analyse the qualitative and interpretive side of networks and combine it with short story vignettes to show the nature of the relationships: whether relationships were formal/informal and/or hierarchical/flat. Relational analysis helps to understand the set of rules holding together the action net.

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