CultPlatForm_21 Danube Culture Platform - Creative Spaces of the 21st Century

CultPlatForm_21 project partners

Lead partner

The project creates synergies between the arts, cultural heritage and tourism, on multilateral (EU, CoE, UNESCO) and on bilateral level. Hence it includes the whole portfolio of the Federal Chancellery in the field of arts and culture.

The Federal Chancellery, division for arts and culture is the responsible administrative and funding body for contemporary arts in Austria and Austrian artists abroad as well as cultural heritage. It is responsible for federal funding programmes for contemporary art including the performing and fine arts, music, literature, film, new media, photography, architecture, design, regional cultural initiatives, and offers residencies in Austria for foreign artists. Furthermore it supports museums, folk culture and the public library system. It is responsible for monument protection and World Heritage, art restitution affairs and supervision of federal cultural institutions. It also takes care of bilateral culture cooperation, EU and multilateral cultural policy (EU, Council of Europe, UNESCO). Furthermore the Chancellery is the carrying organisation of the Creative Europe Desk and the Europe for Citizens Point in Austria.

The Chancellery has longstanding experience in participative governance as coordinator for EU and UNESCO culture policy-making. Open to explore new ways of participatory governance it decided to initiate the Policy Learning Platform in order to reach tangible and sustainable results. The Chancellery follows a regional development strategy. The study “The Creative Motor for Regional Development” (2011) and the manual “EU regional funding for the arts and culture” (2015) were important milestones to demonstrate the relevance of culture for sustainable regional development. In 2014 – 2020 the Chancellery implements a funding measure within the EAFRD/Leader. Furthermore it is in charge of the nomination of the Danube Limes sector AT-DE for inscription on the World Heritage List (submission planned for 2018).

Being the vice-chair within the governing board of the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes of the CoE as well as within the board of the Austrian Commission for UNESCO, the Chancellery plays a very active role in this existing networks having innovative audience development, cultural routes and sustainable tourism high on the agenda. For the aims of this project the Federal Chancellery will engage its multilevel network including the European Commission, the Council of the European Union, Council of Europe, UNESCO, ministries (structural funds, tourism, science, education etc.), Universities, cultural institutions as well as NGOs and actors in the field of the arts and culture.


Elisabeth Pacher
Federal Chancellery of Austria
Dep. II/10 – European and International Cultural Policy
Concordiaplatz 2
1010 Vienna
Tel.: +43 1 531 15-203692


ERDF partner

The OÖ Kulturquartier – Upper Austrian Culture Quarter (KQ) was opened as a joint initiative of the “Ursulinenhof State Cultural Centre” and the “OK – Offenes Kulturhaus (cultural open house) on 17 March 2012. ( The KQ was established by statute as a cultural entity of the State of Upper Austria.

As a result, a new cultural precinct has emerged in the heart of Linz, the capital city of Upper Austria, offering visitors new spaces and opportunities to experience culture. A wide range of food and beverage options enhance the entire complex.

  • The Upper Austrian Culture Quarter (KQ) is the creative space and home base of many regional cultural groups and artists.
  • The Upper Austrian Culture Quarter is an experimental platform for regional culture and contemporary art.
  • The Upper Austrian Culture Quarter is a large-scale cultural education project. Major interdisciplinary exhibitions ( address a wide audience in aesthetically sophisticated ways. It is a cultural education programme that seeks to attract new target groups to art.

The Upper Austrian Culture Quarter is an international art and festival centre, making it the Upper Austrian art window to the world.

Facts and figures about the UA Culture Quarter (KQ)

  • Exhibition space: 3,300 m2, plus a 2,000 m2 outdoor area
  • Project-related use of 4,000 m2 of adjoining inner city roof space (upper deck of a parking building, rooftop area of a shopping centre and the clock tower of the Ursuline Complex)
  • An accessible steel structure as an outdoor stage above the buildings (open space) for art projects and summer cinema
  • Employees: around 40, but up to 100 for big events
  • Cultural depth: 13 organisations offer a variety of programmes (including OK, Ursulinenhof, U:/hof Theatre for young audiences and art galleries).
  • Festivals: CyberArts (Ars Electronica), Next Comic, Crossing Europe (Film)
  • Art/art education for children: “SuuuperSunday”
  • Moviemento cinema programme with three cinemas
  • Events centre with daily programme of current events
  • Culinary experiences: 6 restaurants/cafes with garden area
  • Sponsoring: long-term partnership over several years with e.g. voestalpine AG, Energie AG, Linz AG, Raiffeisen Landesbank, Oö. Versicherung (UA insurance company).

Past EU projects

  • 2002 -2004: Re:Location 1-7 / Shake (OK Offenes Kulturhaus, Culture 2000)
  • 2007 – 2009: Rauschtrilogie – “Thrill Trilogy” (OK, EFRE Regio 13)
  • 2010 – 2012: Kunstrausch – “Thrill of Art” (OK, EFRE Regio 13)
  • 2013: Höhenrausch 3 – “Thrill of the Heights” (KQ, EFRE Regio 13)


Martin Sturm


ERDF partner

Baden-Württemberg has a strong cultural policy focus on the Danube area. Danube cultural cooperations have been playing a distinguished role in activities since decades. The Ministry of Science Research and the Arts is founder and supporter of unique Danube-related cultural institutions, for example the Museum of the Danube Swabians in Ulm, and has close cooperation to Danube-networks or organizations in Baden-Württemberg, like the European Danube Academy or the Council of the Danube Cities and Regions, for instance, or other EUSDR-countries, such as the ARGE Donau. Furthermore it is the founder and main supporter of Akademie Schloss Solitude in Stuttgart, one of the world’s famous artist in residencies. The Akademie has a wide artistic network in the Danube countries with a Danube literature festival since 2014.

The Ministry of Science Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg has long term experience with Danube-wide institutional and project cooperation. Over the last years it presented in collaboration with the Museum of the Danube Swabians the exhibition project „The Man. The River“ with young contemporary artists from all over the Danube – shown in 11 cities from 8 EUSDR-countries, plus Brussels. The follow-up programme „Project Space Danube” is still running. The Danube Strategy Point (DSP) is co-financed by the EU and Baden-Württemberg and is hosted at the representation of Baden-Württemberg. In addition the Ministry of Science Research and the Arts was the initiator and co-funder of the international Danube Conferences on Culture in Ulm (2013), Novi Sad (2014) and Timişoara (2015), therefore having special competences and contacts for similar activities.

The Ministry of Science Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg is responsible regional administrative and funding body for cultural institutions and artistic projects. Its portfolio includes bilateral and international affairs including EUSDR (PA 3). The governmental administration of Baden-Württemberg has long-term experience with EU-programmes, including INTERREG and ETC projects. Therefore the Ministry of Science Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg has the necessary expertise, the competence, the network and the institutional capacity that enable the ministry to successfully participate in this project.

In a dialogue with the regional cultural and tourism stakeholders the Ministry of Science Research and the Arts Baden-Württemberg is ready to implement or integrate relevant parts of the new transregional and international cultural strategy on its own strategic level. On a long term basis, the results of this joint policy making and the experiences from the pilot projects will enlarge the tourism and culture offer of the stakeholders in Baden-Württemberg (e.g. destination management). It will also lead to a new motivation for cultural institutions and the tourism economy in terms of cooperation projects or investments with EUSDR-partners.


Volker Wedekind


ERDF partner

The Ministry of Culture and National Identity of Romania is a specialized body of central public administration with legal personality, which elaborates and ensures the implementation of the strategies and policies in the field of culture and national heritage. In its work it aims to meet several general objectives such as supporting cultural heritage and diversity, both nationally and internationally; supporting the circulation of cultural goods and the mobility of the specialists in the field of culture by promoting intercultural dialogue and cultural diplomacy; promoting multiculturalism and stimulate cross-border cultural cooperation.

Romania is part of the Enlarged Partial Agreement on Cultural Routes and has already identified a series of cultural routes. Thus the possibilities of valorising the natural cultural heritage can be further exploited in the direction of identifying new cultural routes in the Danube region. In order to accomplish its role and overall objectives one of the main duties of Ministry of Culture and National Identity of Romania is to initiate and promote partnerships with international cultural organizations for the diversification, modernization and optimization of public services and facilities offered by cultural institutions.

Cultural heritage in Romania has a huge potential for creative spaces in order to be proper, innovative  and easily reshaping spaces for contemporary art, theater, visual arts, etc. Most of them are not used and the lack of functionality could be transformed into innovative ways for creative spaces of contemporary art events with a proper system of management and administration. The Ministry of Culture and National Identity of Romania participates in this transnational partnership with the aim of enhancing the potential of the rich cultural heritage of the Danube region, especially the undiscovered areas, which are representative for the harmonious life of different ethnic groups.

The Ministry of Culture and National Identity of Romania has a significant experience in long term international partnerships and successfully implemented and implements projects funded by different mechanisms like the PHARE programme where an integrated information management system for the protection of movable cultural heritage and movable cultural property was developed. Or, for example, CULTEMA – Cultural Value for Sustainable Territorial Governance and Marketing which is financed through the South East Europe Transnational Cooperation Programme. The project is focussing on the Area of Intervention 3 within the Priority Axis 4 with its objective of promoting the use of cultural values for development.


Andreea Ursuleasa


ERDF partner

The Ministry of Culture of Bulgaria is the authority responsible for the development, coordination and conduct of the state policy for the protection and development of culture. The Ministry will contribute to the project development and implementation with the know-how and knowledge resources of its experts and the experts of other cultural institutions under its authority.

The countries from the lower Danube region have common needs and face common challenges in the field of cultural tourism. The participation in the project will contribute to the transfer of knowledge and exchange of best practice in the field of cultural routes. The Ministry of Culture will use the findings of the project to elaborate a national cultural strategy which is lacking in Bulgaria. The participation in the project will be a two side learning process and will contribute to the mapping of cultural routes, modernization of cultural routes for new audiences and the development of common packages for cultural tourism between the participating countries from the region.

Bulgaria and more particularly the Institute of Archaeology and Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences (NAIM BAS) participated in the project on the Danube Limes Brand. Furthermore the Ministry of Culture had an input in the elaboration of the Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route. It was also approved as a Lead Partner of the project“Organization, management and marketing of common cultural heritage in Bulgaria and Romania” which took place within the Transborder cooperation programme Bulgaria – Romania 2014 – 2020 (INTERREG V A Romania-Bulgaria).


Deiana Danilova


ERDF partner

Some of the competencies of the Ministry of Tourism of Bulgaria include defining the strategic objectives and priorities for the tourism policy at national level and elaborating and approving the concept for the tourist regions within the country and monitoring the performance of their activities. The ministry aims at supporting less known cultural and historical sites in order to make them more visible and well known. It pays special attention to the north-western region of Bulgaria which is the poorest region in Bulgaria, but at the same time very rich in cultural and historical sites and monuments.

The participation of the Ministry of Tourism of Bulgaria in the project implementation is in line with its policy to foster sustainable use of cultural and historical heritage and resources with focus on Danube and their innovative development and sustainable integration in tourism strategies. Making unknown sites more visible is expected to lead to greater tourist interest in the regions and thus more tourists to visit the region. In particular the city of Vidin will be better integrated in the Danube region by creating a computer 3D visualisation of its hidden sites.

The Bulgarian Ministry of Tourism is also a Coordinator of Priority Axis 3 of EUSDR and in that capacity it will be able to transfer good practices and results of the project to other stakeholders. Also it is partner in the European Commission, Call for proposals 12/G/ENT/TOU/11/411B „Promoting transnational thematic tourism products as mean of sustainable tourism development" focussing on hiking tourism as another sustainable tourism product coexisting with cycling tourism. Currently the Ministry of Tourism implements the project “Communication campaign to promote the EDEN destinations in Bulgaria – Second edition” as a beneficiary under the Programme COSME 2014 – 2020. EDEN is an acronym for European Destinations of ExcelleNce and is an initiative that promotes the models of sustainable development of tourism on the territory of the entire European Union.


Lyubomir Sirakov


ERDF partner

Tourism is a significant economic factor in Regensburg, one of the UNESCO World Heritage sites. The City of Regensburg developed in-depth knowledge and significant experience in successfully managing historical sites and establishing cultural routes through participation in several EU-funded projects. The most important one is “HerO – Heritage as Opportunity” with Regensburg being responsible as Lead Partner of the city network, which aimed to shape innovative strategies for historic urban landscapes. The key objective was facilitating the right balance between the preservation of built cultural heritage and the sustainable, future-proof socio-economic development of historic towns in order to strengthen their attractiveness and competitiveness.

With this know-how the City of Regensburg offers optimum preconditions to conduct a critical reflection on the present strategies, in order to know exactly what has to be modified for the future. The need to improve or maintain its attractiveness is an incentive to Regensburg being already an experienced expert in the field of conservative cultural tourism to turn towards new groups of visitors. Future emphasis must be on developping an innovative concept reflecting its role in the growing macro Danube region. A contemporary cultural approach should be used to develop a new type of Danube Culture Route creating new audience and target groups and fostering transnational cooperation in the Danube Region. For Regensburg innovation is important for sustainable tourism, attracting new and younger travellers.

The city will set a strong political priority in the area of contemporary arts and culture regarding the Danube region as motor for urban regeneration and economic vitality. This will be promoted by the new approach of interdisciplinary working artists, open to modern formats of site-specific presentation and communication at cultural heritage sites, in and on the Danube, within the city and following the region’s cultural routes. This contemporary concept provided with means of the arts gives an up-to-date insight into the region with its ancient cultural routes, enriched by innovative expressions. Thus not only new visitors are drawn to the Danube Region, but also Regensburg itself gains increased attractiveness as a place for contemporary art. The outcomes will feed the transnational policy making and will be show cases for a sustainable cooperation with tourism including new audiences.


Maria Lang
Department of Arts and Culture
Museums of the City of Regensburg
Dachauplatz 2-4
93047 Regensburg
Tel.: +49 941 507-4440


ERDF partner

Winning the Cultural Capital of Europe 2010 title offered a unique opportunity for Pécs. Besides the countless of programs, some unique large investments have been made in the city. They include Zsolnay Cultural Quarter unmatched both in terms of size and its spirituality, and the multifunctional venue, Kodály centre boasting both exquisite appearance and outstanding acoustics. In 2010 the city government decided to appoint Zsolnay Heritage Management non-profit Ltd. (ZsÖK), bearing the name of the world-famous spiritual predecessor Vilmos Zsolnay, as the manager of the new institutions together with further significant venues of Pécs. This is how, besides Zsolnay Cultural Quareter and Kodály Centre, the historically significant World heritage venues of Cella Septichora Visitor Centre and the Early Christian Cemetery, and the House of Arts and Literature of Pécs and Pécs Gallery, both operating in the city centre, came under the control of ZsÖK. The aim of this arrangement was to operate the venues with high potential and cultural significance with the same attitude under the management of a single institution. This way, the cultural events of Pécs can be coordinated and the position of the city on the market of tourism can be strengthened on the long run.

A priority was given to the long-term sustainability of the areas managed by the company, the protection, renovation and promotion of the tangible and spiritual cultural heritage and the coordination of these activities by the parties involved. Furthermore, its aim on the long run is to provide a coordinated research and development of the world-heritage sites and the encompassing protective zone. This includes the protection and renovation of the monuments concerned, and the development of the infrastructure of the areas involved.

Thus, Zsolnay Heritage Management non-profit Ltd. is able to be present in the system of cultural institutions of the city in a rational and profitable way, besides, it is becoming a significant player in presenting high-quality culture.

Zsolnay Quarter is a new cultural centre operating in the once significant, however, by the 21st century mostly abandoned collection of buildings of the Zsolnay factory. The 5-acre area includes the world famous Gyugyi collection, the Zsolnay Mausoleum, the Pink Zsolnay Exhibition, Bóbita Puppet Theatre, the Zsolnay Family and Factory-history exhibition, the 1000-square-metre exhibition venue of Pécs Gallery, the Faculty of Art of the University of Pécs, The theatre hall of JESZ ensemble, and the Planetarium. Besides, the Quarter is home to several cultural events, and festivals.

Kodály Centre, implemented following profound acoustic design even at international standards, boasts state of the art background technology. Due to its multifunctional character, it functions both as a 999-seat concert hall and a conference venue completed with 8 workshop halls. According to Maxim Vengerov, world famous violinist, this concert hall is an architectural Stradivari.

The 4th-century Early Christian Cemetery of the Roman Sopianae – today Pécs – was nominated for the list of Culture-History Treasures by the World Heritage Committee in 2000. The reason for this lies in the fact that the architecture and wall paintings of the collection of buildings excavated in the area offer a highly complex and diverse illustration of the early Christian burial architecture and art of the northern and western provinces of the Roman Empire. The underground burial chambers and memorial chapels witness the perseverance and faith of the European late-Roman Christian communities, and they display the roots of a culture and civilisations having influence and still being alive today.

The building of the Medieval University presents the first university in Hungary founded by Pope Urban V under the edict issued by him on 1st September 1367. The venue largely preserves its historical authenticity, and was designed in a way to be able to house the rich finds unearthed during the excavation, as well as the exhibition displaying the first university of Hungary, and the medieval history of Pécs.


Gábor Moczar


IPA partner

The Danube Competence Center is a regional network of over 80 public, private and non-government organizations located in the Danube basin involved in the development and promotion of sustainable tourism. Our members are coming from ten Danube countries. The members of the DCC have come together to establish the Danube as a sustainable tourist destination and to present a diverse tourist program across national boundaries, not only to boost the economy but also to strengthen and promote infrastructure development and environmental awareness.

The DCC supports the creation of new, innovative transnational products based on cultural and natural heritage such as Roman Emperors and Danube Wine Route and on soft mobility measures such as hiking and cycling trails like EuroVelo 6 and 13.

DCC works to:

  • strengthen the shared interests of members and coordinate activities;
  •  combine know-how in the Danube tourism sector;
  • promote sustainable, cross-border development of tourism in the region;
  • support regional cooperation and economic growth in the Danube region;
  • offer partners a platform for regional collaboration and marketing;
  • support development of regional tourist programs;
  • build up regional and international business networks

Furthermore the DCC is observer organisation in the Priority Axis 3 "Culture, tourism and people-to-people contact" of the EUSDR. In that role the DCC is supporting the coordinating countries Romania and Bulgaria in creating cultural and natural routes concept in the Danube region.

The DCC acted as Lead Partner of the following two projects: Cultural Routes in the Middle and Lower Danube Region (phase I) from 2012 to 2013 and Roman Emperors’ and Danube Wine Route (phase II) 2014 to 2015. The aim was to contribute to the diversification of the European tourism offer by promoting cultural tourism through two Cultural Routes in the Middle and Lower Danube region with unique European heritage of the Roman period and wine culture.

Furthermore the DCC participated in several INTERREG projects such as „Sustainable Transport and Tourism Along the Danube – TRANSDANUBE“ from 2012 to 2014 and „Sustainable Mobility along the Newest EuroVelo Route – the Iron Curtain Trail“. Both of them aim at identifying solutions for mobility management through sustainable accessibility and inter-connectivity between cities and regions along the Danube, by environmentally sound mobility like trains and busses and environmentally friendly alternative vehicles like ships and boats or bicycles.


Boris Čamernik

Programme co-funded by European Union funds (ERDF, IPA, ENI)