From Rijeka, Croatia
Friday 22 April 2016

LIKE is proud to announce that Rijeka, a member of the network for the past few years, has been chosen as 2020 European Capital of Culture.
Irena Kregar Segota, the city's international relations coordinator and in charge of Rijeka 2020, is also a member of the Board. She took a few spare minutes in her busy timetable to write a few words about her city, the city's relationship to culture and the programme she will contribute to deploy for the next four years.

“The Croatian city of Rijeka, a long-time member of the network Les Rencontres – LIKE, has been designated European Capital of Culture 2020. Rijeka was chosen among four Croatian cities that were shortlisted in the second round of the competition, including Pula, Osijek and Dubrovnik.
Rijeka (Fiume, River) is both literally and metaphorically a fluid city: it is a city marked by water, surrounded by numerous fresh water sources and the sea. As the major Croatian port, with its twenty four national minorities, numerous migrations to and from the city, constant population changes, and turbulent history, Rijeka has learned how to develop an intercultural dialogue, becoming a city known for its tolerance and openness. Rijeka is also one of the richer cities with industrial heritage worldwide, the latter being now transformed into new places for culture and creativity. Rijeka is a city with a dynamic cultural scene, ambitious University, traditional music and rock music, digital culture and interconnection of education and new technologies that contribute not only to the diversity of cultural life but also to the economic development, asserting the transversal power of culture.

Inspired by the city’s past and present narrative, the programme of Rijeka 2020 is based on three pillars – Water, Work and Migration – united under the umbrella topic and motto ˝Port of
Diversity˝. Linked to issues such as biodiversity, environmental challenges and climate change, new forms of work and production, and finally attitudes linked to shifting populations and mobility, these themes reflect values deeply woven into the historical and contemporary identity of Rijeka, as well as those anchored within the very core and sense of the European Union.

The title of European Capital of Culture will help Rijeka expand the scope and diversity of its cultural offer, enhance access and participation to culture, strengthen the capacities of the cultural and creative sector and its cooperation with other sectors, increase the international visibility and profile of the city, as well as enhance the overall development of the city using creativity and culture as essential resources.”

Irena shares her conviction that culture is a tool for acting on and developing territories and the self-betterment of peoples with LIKE which, on this regard, works via its projects on making the diversity of cultural actors of European territories meet so that the latter get more inclusive and vibrant.

Again, our warmest congratulation to Rijeka!
Rijeka 2020 - Port of diversity