Productivity of Culture

Anna Arvanitaki

Anna Arvanitaki is a Urban Planner, President of Poiein kai Prattein and is working Ministry of Environment


presentation: Taking Culture into Consideration by Urban Planners
category: Cultural Planning

Download the Paper "Taking Culture into Consideration by Urban Planners"
Download the Paper "Αστικός σχεδιασμός και Πολιτισμός"


The paper explores the relationship between strategic urban planning and cultural policy in recent years.

It outlines how culture emerged at the level of urban agendas, at the beginning (‘80s) used by certain cities in the context of urban restructuring, to later become a recognised component of urban regeneration strategies, notably at the level of the EU, which had by then (middle ‘90s) arrived at a well articulated Urban Agenda.

Tracing the institution of European Cultural Capitals, the paper highlights the fact that lessons drawn from the experiences of implemented ECC programmes show a high degree of symmetry between the ingredients of a potentially successful ECC programme and the current idea of Cooperative Strategic Urban planning.

Therefore it is argued that experiences of ECC organisers on how to encapsulate the vision of the city in drawing objectives, how to mould innovative forms of urban actions through artistic inspiration, how to resolve dilemmas between ‘Culture’ and ‘culture’, how to experiment on ‘smart’ forms of governance ensuring efficiency and inclusion, all these are enough reasons to use the ECC programs as “demonstration projects” of the possible osmoses between Strategic Urban Planning and Cultural Policy, as an instance of the so-called Cultural Planning.


She has studied in Greece (NTUA) and UK (MSc UCL), she is working since 1980 at the Hellenic Ministry of Environment and Planning, where she gained experience in spatial planning at all levels. For the last 10 years, she has been dealing with the Law 2508/97 on Sustainable Urban Development in drafting specifications for Municipal Land-use Plans, Urban Regeneration Studies etc.

Currently, she is coordinating the launch and supervision of Master Plans for Patras, Larissa, Volos and Ioannina.
In parallel, she has been involved in several European projects, advising Greek local authorities on issues of planning and environment. Since 2003, she is president of the Civil non Profit Company POIEIN KAI PRATTEIN.


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