Tsinandali Hosted the EU4Culture Regional Conference: Fostering Collaboration Among Eastern Partnership Cities

On 5-6 October 2023, in Tsinandali, Georgia, the EU-funded project EU4Culture organised the 3rd Regional Network Conference to facilitate the formalisation of the “EU4Culture Cities Network” – uniting 14 non-capital cities from Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Republic of Moldova and Ukraine. These cities had developed Cultural Strategies with EU support following the approach of European Capitals of Culture.

The conference focused on the formalisation and sustainability of “EU4Culture Cities Network” and explored grounds for collaboration opportunities beyond the conclusion of the EU4Culture project. Mayors and other representatives of the cities, project partners and international experts participated in the conference.

During the conference, participants exchanged operational visions for the network and explored collaboration opportunities. Cities showcased their progress, shared lessons learned and practical experience of the cultural strategy implementation process. The conference also revealed the cultural projects, selected for funding within the EU4Culture grant scheme. The projects will be implemented in non-capital cities of the Eastern Partnership Countries. The second day centered on cultural policy’s role in fostering sustainable economic growth through tourism.

„Sustainable Cultural tourism is a powerful tool and policy to extend the potential of culture to boost economic growth and increase the well-being of local communities“, highlighted Christophe Masson, Team Leader Inclusive Societies, DG NEAR (European Commission). “The EU’s vision of cultural development resonates through projects like the EU4Culture, fostering regional cooperation and unlocking the transformative economic and social potential of our diverse cultures.“

As part of EU4Culture, 14 cities developed their cultural strategies, with 8 being awarded a grant up to €300,000 each for implementing planned activities. The project encourages cooperation among non-capital cities in Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine, achieved through the „EU4Culture Cities Network.“ further reinforced by annual Network Conferences.

The EU-funded EU4Culture aims to support the role of culture as an engine for growth and social development across the Eastern Partnership countries. The project is implemented by the Goethe Institut (lead), Institut Francais Georgie, Danish Cultural Institute and Czech Centers.