Nova Gorica to be the European Capital of Culture 2025 in Slovenia

The chairperson of the European Capitals of Culture Expert panel announced on 18 December 2020 that the city of Nova Gorica has been recommended for the European Capital of Culture 2025 title in Slovenia.

Za medije · December 18, 2020

The recommendation was made by a panel of twelve independent experts assessing applications from four short-listed Slovenian cities following a 2½ day online meeting.

Since 1985, European Capitals of Culture have developed into one of the most ambitious cultural projects in Europe and one of the EU’s most appreciated activities.

The goals of this initiative are more relevant than ever: to provide Europeans with opportunities to learn more about each other’s cultures, to enjoy their shared history and values, to experience the feeling of belonging to the same European community, to develop European cultural connections and partnerships, as well as to underline the role of culture in the development of cities.

Vir/Source: FB@NovaGorica2025.

Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, said:
“Congratulations to Nova Gorica its public authorities, its cultural institutions and its inhabitants on winning the national competition to become European Capital of Culture in 2025. It will be the second Slovenian city, after Maribor in 2012, to hold this title. Hosting a European Capital of Culture is a great opportunity for a city and a region to boost their cultural ambitions, to bring culture close to the heart of their communities and to learn more about each other – and about themselves. Next to Chemnitz in Germany, Nova Gorica will form a dynamic duo that will make the most of this title and ensure its long-term cultural, economic and social benefits.


In accordance with the Decision of the European Parliament and of the Council which governs the European Capitals of Culture Union action, there will be two European Capitals of Culture in 2025: one in Germany and one in Slovenia.

According to the current scheme for designating the European Capitals of Culture, the selection has two rounds: a pre-selection round (following which a shortlist of candidate cities is drawn up) and a final selection round approximately nine months later (one city is recommended for the title). The selected cities are then officially designated by the Member State concerned.

The selection criteria state that cities should prepare a cultural programme with a strong European dimension, which fosters the participation of the city’s stakeholders as well as its various neighbourhoods and attracts visitors from the whole country and Europe. The programme must have a lasting impact and contribute to the long-term development of the city. The cities must also show that they have the support from the relevant public local authorities and the capacity to deliver the project.

Regarding the competition in Slovenia, the relevant Slovenian authorities invited applications from interested cities in February 2019. Six applications were submitted by the closing date of 31 December 2019 by: Kranj, Lendava, Ljubljana, Nova Gorica, Piran, Ptuj.The pre-selection meeting took place on 25-26 February 2020 and at a press conference on 27 February four cities were short-listed: Ljubljana, Nova Gorica, Piran, Ptuj. They were given until 24.11.2020 to complete their applications. The final selection meeting for the competition in Slovenia takes place on 16-18 December 2020.

The applications are to be examined by a panel composed of 12 independent experts, two appointed by the relevant Slovenian authorities and ten by EU institutions and bodies (European Parliament, Council, Commission and Committee of the Regions).

The final selection meeting for the competition in Germany took place on 26 – 27 October 2020. The chairperson of the ECOC Expert panel announced on 28 October that the city of Chemnitz has been recommended for the European Capital of Culture 2025 title in Germany.

Rijeka (Croatia) and Galway (Ireland) are the European Capitals of Culture in 2020. Upcoming European Capitals of Culture are Elefsina (Greece), Timisoara (Romania) and Novi Sad (Serbia) in 2021, Kaunas (Lithuania) and Esch-sur-Alzette (Luxembourg) in 2022, Veszprém (Hungary) in 2023, Tartu (Estonia), Bad Ischl (Austria) and Bodø (Norway) in 2024, Chemnitz (Germany) in 2025. The effects of the coronavirus crisis have led the European Commission to propose that the 2020 and 2021 European Capitals of Culture extend or postpone their activities. The Commission’s proposal is now with to the European Parliament and the Council for consideration and final adoption.

For more information
European Commission: Culture
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