In 2015, the European Capital of Culture programme celebrates 30 years, and this has taken me to party ‘like it was 1985’ in Pilsen, current ECoC host with Mons, as well as continue sharing my European Parliament research findings. I am also contributing to other international gatherings such as that organised in Paris by the University of Chicago, to discuss intercontinental trends in cultural policy.
This year I am expanding my longitudinal research programme on the image impacts of large-scale events in key cities across the globe. Part of this research involves an assessment of the cultural policy implications of the International Olympic Committee Agenda 2020. This work is also taking me to Rio de Janeiro, to observe the ‘one-year-to-go’ 2016 Olympic Games cultural manifesto.
My public speaking is taking me from Hull to Helsinki, and from Marseille & Aix to St Andrews to discuss cultural sustanability, cultural value, intangible heritage as well as the varying narratives of the ‘Global City’ through the centuries. I am also involved in various research advisory and strategic peer review roles with Arts Council England, the AHRC and DG-Regio at the European Commission.
By the end of 2015, I will be celebrating the first 5 years of the Institute of Cultural Capital and the 10 year-legacy of establishing Impacts 08 – the first holistic and longitudinal European Capital of Culture research programme in Liverpool. Watch this space for more information on the major symposium I am coordinating to celebrate these milestones, revisit key findings, share new insights and reunite old research friends from around the world.