Exploring implicit and explicit cultural policy dimensions through major-event and neoliberal rhetoric

Rafaela Neiva Ganga, Nicholas Wise, Marko Perić

    Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

    5 Scopus citations


    This paper is conceptually positions the emergence of the neoliberal city in the context of transitions to late-capitalism. The aim of this study is to understand intersections between explicit and implicit cultural policy dimensions focusing on the Rijeka2020 programme as intended and how it was restructured as a response to COVID-19. Through cultural policy analysis, this ex-ante qualitative case study of the Rijeka2020 programme illuminates overlapping explicit and implicit policy priorities of the ECoC—offering a unique insight into what could potentially be the future of the European cultural policy. Rijeka2020 can be seen as a changing point amidst different rhetoric, analysed around three themes (regeneration, legacy, and participation). Results examine how Rijeka's culture-led urban regeneration agenda was shy on creative industry oriented programming, yet reinforced through capital cultural infrastructural projects. Through attempts to avoid event-led spectacle, officials planned to engage more at the neighbourhood-scale using participatory art practices that concentrated on capacity building. Important take-away points address shifts from culture-oriented regeneration to local participatory art practices is a step towards reconstructing the cultural sector upstream (based on production) and downstream (through reception).

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Article number100401
    JournalCity, Culture and Society
    StatePublished - Dec 2021


    • COVID-19
    • Cultural legacy
    • Culture-led regeneration
    • European Capital of Culture
    • European policy
    • Rijeka 2020
    • Urban events

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • General Social Sciences
    • Urban Studies
    • Economics, Econometrics and Finance (miscellaneous)


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