European Cities and Cultural Mobility: Trends and Support Actions

This study ”European cities and cultural mobility: Trends and support actions” analyses the policies and actions implemented by large European cities to support the mobility of artists and cultural professionals. This study is based on the results of a survey completed by 24 cities in 15 European countries.

Cities believe that encouraging cultural cooperation and fostering the mobility of artists are necessary to:
- make the European project a reality and enhance cultural rights and diversity;
- foster artistic innovation and creativity, and individual professional experience;
- expand cultural audiences and markets;
- sustain city attractiveness, economic development and social inclusion.

Key findings of the study:
-The main motivations for cities to support cultural mobility lie in the growing importance of culture and cultural mobility in international policies.
- Support for cultural mobility appears to focus on artists rather than on other cultural professionals.
- Public funding is often allocated to local cultural organisations responsible for mobility programmes or projects. This is sometimes in parallel to specific mobility funds or programmes directly managed by the city in collaboration with stakeholders at local, national and international level.
- Support for mobility focuses mainly on Europe (EU and non-EU). However, cities show a growing interest in emerging countries, especially in Asia and Latin America.
- A real strength of the actions developed by cities, compared to those developed by national European and international institutions, is the direct link with the artists and organisations they support.
- The evaluation of mobility schemes appears to be challenging and unsystematic, partly due to budgetary and time constraints.

Recommendations are addressed to cities and to European institutions. They aim to foster better integration between cities’ actions and principles applicable at European and national levels by reinforcing cities’ potential for a direct and closer relationship with creative forces operating on their territories.

The study was carried out between autumn 2012 and spring 2013 by On the Move in response to a request from Nantes as chair of the EUROCITIES working group on the mobility of artists.