Leuven is running for the title of European Capital of Culture in 2030. The European Capitals of Culture initiative is designed to highlight the richness and diversity of cultures in Europe. The cities that win the honor can offer a year of cultural events with a marked European dimension.
"The ambition to become European Capital of Culture in 2030 fully complies with Leuven MindGate's ambitions", Gilbert Declerck, Leuven MindGate President and Mohamed Ridouani, President of the Leuven MindGate General Assembly, mention. "Being the Cultural capital boosts bost the societal and economical life in the city. We are convinced that the and& Festival and Summit - happening for the first time coming May - will greatly amplify our ambition to become European Capital of Culture."
The city of Leuven motivates its candidacy by referring to the many cultural sites in the city and the cultural dynamics that Leuven has demonstrated over the last 10 years, citing several high-profile events such as the Utopia exhibitions in 2016 celebrating the 500th anniversary of the printing of Thomas More’s book with the same name.
Applications for 2030 must be submitted by 2024. A new framework includes a chronological list of member states that can host the title from 2020 until 2033. Six years before the title-year the selected host member states publish a call for applications, usually through their Ministry for Culture. Cities interested in participating in the competition must submit a proposal for consideration.
The 2017 European Capitals of Culture are Aarhus (Denmark) and Pafos (Cyprus).