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This is the report of the first monitoring and advisory meeting of the European Capital of Culture Panel. The meeting concemed the 2012 European Capitals of Culture, namely Guimardes (Portugal) and Maribor (Slovenia); it took place on 25 November 2009.
This report contains recommendations by the Selection Panel for Riga.
On the basis of an overall evaluation of the applications and considering the selection criteria mentioned in article 4 of Decision 1622/2006/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of the EU, the panel reached a consensus to recommend that Cesis, Liepaja and Riga be pre selected for the European Capital of Culture title. However, the panel would recommend these 3 cities to improve considerably their application to reach the requested quality for the European Capital of Culture event.
In the panel’s view, the project presented by Umeå, on which a great deal of work had been done since the pre-selection meeting, seemed well constructed and well prepared. The panel was sympathetic to its underlying deeply felt urge to make Umeå and the Northern part of Sweden more connected with and known by other parts of Europe. For this reason, it is the panel’s unanimous recommendation that Umeå should be designated as European Capital of Culture 2014.
Only the City of Mons submitted an application for European Capital of Culture for the year 2015. After an intensive debate, the panel judged that the quality of the Mons application was strong enough on the basis of the criteria of “the European dimension” and “cities and citizens” and then decided to pre select it.
After the general final discussion of panel, it was recommended that there were 2 cities which best met the objectives of the process and the criteria stipulated by the Decision : It was agreed unanimously that Ostrava and Plzeň should be shortlisted. These two cities are expected to complete their applications further on the basis of the criteria and objectives required for the event, and in particular to stick to the panel's recommendations mentioned above.