What makes a European Capital of Culture?
Callum leads the BOP team, its portfolio and strategic partnerships. His cultural and creative industries expertise is founded on leading analytical research and policy formulation in the UK and internationally.
Planning a new project?
If you are interested to learn more about our work or if you have a project you would like to discuss, get in touch.
Limerick Arts Office
This week, our partners in Limerick will find out whether they have been successful in gaining the status of European Capital of Culture (ECoC) in 2020. We were fortunate to work with them to develop a cultural strategy framework to support their bid.
National City for Culture in 2014, there is a real appetite from local people for culture and its role in future of the city. Of course, there are exciting plans for developing culture and growing the creative industries in the city. But more than this, this is a great opportunity to re-examine and re-imagine what kind of place it is, to the different people who both live there and visit.
Their early concept of multiplicity got to the heart of examining what Limerick in 2016 is about. It looked at the city as an interconnected place; inclusive and generous. It responded to the fact that Limerick is in the eye of the beholder; it is different places to different people. Citizens are seen as “curators of their own lived experience, navigating the daily realities of life in a way which is both unique and familiar to them.”
These different realities and experiences are all connected to a sense of place and multiple ways of Belonging, their chosen term for Limerick 2020. This belonging of citizens could be to “their families, their real and virtual communities, their schools, university, and workplace, Limerick, Europe. And to find new ways of belonging and share that sense of belonging.”
The Limerick 2020 programme will explore this belonging in creative ways over the coming years, including using food and inter-cultural exchange of ideas, developing young filmmakers, as well as the international gathering of musicians, bands and choirs.
Culture as part of a new lifeblood
Limerick sees itself as being in a “rebuilding” stage for the future, with a growing population, many of whom are welcomed from across Europe and beyond. Culture is a part of the new lifeblood of Limerick, with people across the city now recognising it as a way to drive positive change. We worked with the bid partners to look at the roles that they would need to play to allow culture to play its full role in the change. We believe they are a helpful guide to any place or organisation thinking about what more it can do around culture, even in times of austerity:
Advocate: Consolidating and valuing the role of culture in Limerick in a local, national and European context
Broker: Connecting people, organisations and opportunities through culture
Innovator: Successfully developing new ways of working, new business opportunities and supporting growth
Supporter: Continuing to create sustainable support, resources and investment in the cultural sector
Promoter: Finding new and interesting ways to showcase, host or promote culture in Limerick, identifying exciting ways for Limerick’s city, towns and villages to “be the venue”
Reflector: Reviewing, monitoring, analysing and critiquing the cultural strategy
It was great for us to be a small part of the development process for Limerick 2020 and its Belonging programme. The whole process has been a galvanising one for the city from the start. Regardless of whether Limerick gains the status of ECoC, the city has a plan and ambition around culture. They are looking outwards and connecting with Europe and beyond; they are re-imagining and building the city with culture at its heart.
We cross our fingers for our friends in Ireland to gain this exciting opportunity to renew their place in Europe, whilst reflect on how the UK will probably not have the same opportunity again.
You can download the full strategy framework below.
– Gregg Hutchings, Senior Consultant
This Cultural Strategy Framework 2016-2030 for Limerick City and County Council sets out a clear vision and ambition that allows us to strategically plan effectively and look to the future.
Limerick Cultural Strategy – A Framework 2016-2030
A global research and consulting practice for culture and the creative economy
Building on our contribution to the second edition of the report in 2018, BOP has led as the Data and Research partner on this report to help find out how policies can protect people working in the creative and cultural sectors.
UNESCO's Re|Shaping Policies for Creativity Report – Addressing culture as a global public good
Our strategy will guide the creation of a new digital service aiming at supporting and developing the creative scene in Downtown Kingston.
Leveraging the creative potential of Downtown Kingston through technology
Inter-American Development Bank - IDB
Our research into the UK's high streets found that 69% of people think culture on their high street makes their area a better place to live.
Culture: The cornerstone of the UK’s high streets
Arts Council England
BOP’s updated Handbook for the Inter-American Development Bank sets out strategies for sustainability and urban resilience
Creative and Cultural Industries and Urban Revitalisation in the post-COVID era
Inter-American Development Bank - IDB
We investigated the potential impact of AI on the cultural and creative industries.
Opportunities and Challenges of AI for the Cultural and Creative Industries
Published today: ‘Design for Good: 90 Years of the RSA Student Design Awards’, a new publication from the RSA, co-authored by BOP
A History of Bright Ideas: 90 Years of the RSA Student Design Awards
The Royal Society for Arts (RSA)
New skills research in the Gulf Co-operation Council States
An evidence-base for the growing Gulf festivals sector
Our research into the museum workforce is launched
Conscientiousness, optimism, and curiosity
Museums Galleries Scotland
BOP’s report for Nanjing City Government demonstrates the importance of cross-cutting policies with a compelling cultural offer at the core
Creating Healthy Night-time Economies in World Cities
Nanjing Creative Center
Findings from our work at Great Ormond Street Hospital
Creativity in health settings
How is China influencing the future of Cultural Tourism?
Cultural Infrastructure for the 21st Century
Chengdu Media Group
Based on our impact analysis we estimate $750 billion in lost GVA for the CCI as a result of the pandemic so far.
Economic impact of COVID-19 on the Cultural and Creative Industries
Our analysis of the strengths & challenges of music in the Midlands is published
Hitting the right notes in the Midlands
Arts Council England
New handbook published for city leaders
How can cities make space for culture?
World Cities Culture Forum (WCCF)
Our report sheds new light on how building the capacity of the heritage sector can assist working internationally
International working builds stronger heritage sector at home
National Lottery Heritage Fund
Our new report with Nesta published
Opportunities for China-UK Cooperation through Equity Crowdfunding
Our new research report for the National Trust
Protect urban heritage to prevent growth in inequality
Our latest research for the Reading Agency shows we should read year-round
Reading is for life, not just for August
The Reading Agency
Our review of the Scottish Animation Sector, commissioned by Creative Scotland, has just been published
Review of the Scottish Animation Sector