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The creative city conceptualization and the UCCN

Thesis type
(Extended Essay) M.A.
Date created
The creative city concept is one that has been applied and transferred across many urban centres' cultural policy. In its adaptation by the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN), a recognized global institution, the concept attains another level of status as a transnational mobile policy, influencing the shaping of cultural governance in its participating Member Cities. This paper explores the UCCN's interpretation of the creative city concept by analyzing the 'UCCN Call for Applications 2021: Application Form', in order to discuss how neoliberalism, both embodied by the concept and processes of neoliberal governance shaping the organization, have implications within the city. It is found that the 'Creative Fields' proposed by the UCCN, holding the embedded values of entrepreneurial governance, do not make for sustainable urban cultural policy. In turn, entrepreneurial governance (embodying neoliberal values), adopted by global institutions has the ability to reproduce power dynamics and hierarchies existing as a result of market structures. This translates in policy implementations within the city, the narratives that the Network proposes obscuring these dynamics.
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Supervisor or Senior Supervisor
Thesis advisor: Droumeva, Milena
Member of collection
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