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Portugal 2027, the call will be close on 23 november 2021

Padrão dos Descobrimentos, Lisboa Padrão dos Descobrimentos, Lisboa Photo by António Francisco Calado / Pixabay

In accordance with the calendar set out in the Annex to the Decision, in 2027 the European Capital of Culture will be given the name of one Latvian and one Portuguese city. For Latvia, this is the second opportunity to give the name of the European Capital of Culture to one of the cities. In short list there are four cities: Valmiera, Liepāja, Daugavpils, Jūrmala. Portugal had 3 European Capitals of Culture: Lisbon, in 1994, Porto, in 2001, and Guimarães, in 2012.

For Portugal 2027 there are more cities candidate: Faro, Funchal, Évora, Braga , Coimbra, Leiria (Rede Cultura), Guarda, Oeiras , Viana do Castelo, Aveiro, Ponta Delgada are the first.

Applications for the European Capital of Culture - 2027 Portugal are open from 23 November 2020 to 23 November 2021.

The general objectives of the European Capital of Culture action have been defined as follows: to safeguard and promote the diversity of cultures in Europe and to highlight the common features they share as well as to increase citizens' sense of belonging to a common cultural area, on the one hand, and to foster the contribution of culture to the long-term development of cities at economic, social and urban level,  in accordance with their respective strategies and priorities, on the other hand.

In line with these objectives, activities developped by the city that will be designated as European Capital of Culture will strive to enhance the range, diversity and European dimension of its cultural offering, including through transnational co-operation; to widen access to and participation in culture; to strengthen the capacity of its cultural sector and the links of the latter with other sectors and to raise its international profile through culture.

The aim of this call is to trigger applications from cities in Portugal wishing to bid for the "European Capital of Culture" title for the year 2027 and to lead to the designation of one of these cities, that may be awarded the Melina Mercouri prize which is funded from the respective Union programme supporting culture at the time of its award.

The Managing Authority in charge of the selection procedure for the European Capital of Culture title for the year 2027 in Portugal is the Cultural Strategy, Planning and Assessment Bureau (GEPAC), within the Portuguese Minister of Culture.

The call for submission of applications is exclusively addressed to the cities of Portugal which wish to apply for the title of European Capital of Culture 2027.

The title applies to a city. Cities may involve their surrounding areas if they wish so, but the title is awarded only to the city itself and not to the whole area. Therefore, where a city involves its surrounding area, the application shall be made under the name of the city.

Every application must be based on a cultural programme with a strong European dimension. The cultural programme shall cover the year of the European Capital of Culture title and shall be created specifically for the title.

For recollection, in case of claim relating to the activities carried out in the framework of the submission for applications the sole liability of applicants can be invoked.

Candidate cities are invited to comply with the following formal requirements when drafting their application. Applications which do not follow these requirements at pre-selection or final selection stages may be considered ineligible and not examined further:

- The candidate cities shall communicate in writing to the Managing Authority their intention to submit an application at the latest one month before the deadline specified in section 4 below "Submission of applications".

- The application shall be written in one or more of the official languages of the European Union, and one of the languages must be English. If there is more than one linguistic version, all versions must be identical from content and presentation points of view. The English version of the applications will be the working version for the panel established to carry out the selection procedure.

- Candidate cities shall answer all the questions.

- For the pre-selection stage, the English version of the applications shall not exceed 60 pages in A4 format. For the final selection stage, the English version of the applications shall not exceed 100 pages in A4 format. Applicants may include illustrations, graphics or any other visual elements (such as logos), but these are included as part of the page limit.

- For the pre-selection stage, applications shall be sent in paper and electronic formats within the deadline indicated under section 4 below "Submission of applications". For the final selection stage, applications shall be sent in paper and electronic formats within the deadline that will be indicated by GEPAC to the shortlisted cities after completion of the pre-selection stage. 

a.       Exclusion criteria

Candidate cities must sign a declaration on their honour certifying that they are not in one of the situations referred to in Article 106(1) and Articles 107, 108 and 109 of the Financial Regulation applicable to the general budget of the European Union, filling in the relevant form attached in annex 2.

b.       Award criteria

The award criteria for the assessment of the applications are divided into six categories corresponding to the provisions laid down in Article 5 of Decision No 445/2014/EU and all six categories have the same weighting:

1. Contribution to the long-term strategy

2. European dimension

3. Cultural and artistic content

4. Capacity to deliver

5. Outreach

6. Management

  

A panel of independent experts ("the panel") shall be established to carry out the selection and monitoring procedures.

The role of the panel is to assess the applications received from candidate cities, agree on a list of pre-selected cities as well as recommend one city for being awarded with the title of European Capital of Culture and the Melina Mercouri prize. At the end of the monitoring phase, it is also the role of the panel to issue a report, which will be the basis for the Commission's decision to pay or not the Melina Mercury prize to the city.

The panel will consist of twelve members.

For the purpose of the pre-selection and selection stages, ten members will be experts appointed by the European institutions and bodies, i.e. the European Parliament, Council, Commission and Committee of the Regions, and two members will be experts appointed by the Portuguese Ministry of Culture in accordance with the relevant national procedures and in consultation with the European Commission.

The same experts shall be appointed by the authorising officer of the Commission so as to give a recommendation about the award of the Melina Mercouri prize.

In accordance with Article 6 of Decision No 445/2014/EU, the experts shall be citizens of the Union, shall be independent, have no actual or potential conflict of interest in respect of a specific candidate city and have substantial experience and expertise in the cultural sector, in the cultural development of cities or in the organisation of a European Capital of Culture or an international cultural event of similar scope and scale.

The procedure for designating one city as European Capital of Culture is broken down as follows:

The selection phase

The selection phase is made of two different stages:

- Pre-selection stage

GEPAC will organise a pre-selection meeting on a date that will be specified later on the GEPAC/ECOC27 website, in Lisbon, inviting all candidate cities that have submitted an application in response to this call in the deadline set below, to send a delegation for a hearing with the panel.

The panel shall assess each candidate city on the basis of its application and hearing against the objectives of the European Capital of Culture action and the criteria as specified above. After this meeting, the panel will agree on a shortlist of candidate cities, which shall be invited to revise and complete their application during the final selection stage. It shall issue a pre-selection report containing a general assessment of all the applications, the short-list of candidate cities which are to be considered further as well as recommendations to these cities.

Portugal shall then formally approve the short-list based on the report of the panel and GEPAC shall send a letter to short-listed candidate cities inviting them to complete and revise their applications and indicating the deadline for submitting such applications. 

- Final selection stage

The short-listed candidate cities will complete and revise their applications with a view to complying with the award criteria as well as taking into account the recommendations contained in the pre-selection report. Each pre-selected city will send its revised application to GEPAC in due time.

At this stage, the panel may wish to pay a visit to the pre-selected cities to get in situ a better understanding of the candidacies as well as the level of ownership among the city's inhabitants and key stakeholders. In any case, GEPAC will organise a selection meeting on a date to be specified later on the GEPAC/ECOC27 website, in Lisbon, inviting all short-listed cities to send a delegation for a hearing with the panel.

The panel shall assess each short-listed candidate city on the basis of its revised application and hearing against the objectives of the European Capital of Culture action and the criteria as specified above. 

After this meeting, the panel shall agree on the recommendation of a maximum of one city for the title. If none of the candidate cities fulfil all the criteria, the panel may recommend not to award the title in Portugal in 2027.

The panel shall issue a selection report containing a general assessment of all the applications and a justified recommendation for the designation of one city for the title. The report shall also contain recommendations to the city concerned regarding the progress to be made by the year of the title.

Portugal shall, based on the recommendation of the panel, designate one city to hold the title for the 2027 European Capital of Culture and shall notify the European Parliament, the Council, the Commission and the Committee of the Regions of that designation no later than four years before the title-year.

At the same time it recommends a city for the title, the panel will also recommend the authorising officer of the Commission to award the Melina Mercouri prize to this city.

After the city has been officially designated, the authorising officer of Commission, upon this recommendation, may award it the Melina Mercouri prize which amounts to € 1.500.000. The candidate cities shall communicate in writing their intention to submit an application at the latest 23rd of October of 2021 which is one month before the deadline specified above.

Applicants will be informed by GEPAC of the receipt of their application within 10 working days. By submitting an application, cities accept that their e-application at both pre-selection and selection stages be made public on the website of GEPAC and the website of the Commission at the end of the selection phase.

More information here.


 

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