Project Details

Title: ORGANZA - Network of Medium Sized Creative Cities
Priority: 1: Innovation and the knowledge economy
Theme: Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Type of intervention

Type of intervention: 1: Regional Initiative Project
Mini-programme: No
Duration: 1st Jan 2010 - 31st Dec 2012


Total budget: €1,959,881.25
ERDF contribution: €1,493,066.33

Lead partner

Municipality of Arnhem
Eusebiusbuitensingel 53
6828 HZ, Arnhem

  • Click for contact details
    • Contact Person: Esther Ruiten, senior advisor economic development
      Phone: 31(0)273774575

Project summary

ORGANZA's objective is to systematically collect and exchange policy experiences of local and regional authorities regarding creative industries. ORGANZA focuses on medium size regions and cities that lack critical mass and face brain drain of creative talent. A key element in the lack of critical mass is an incomplete production structure and environment. Often either creative entrepreneurship or industrial entrepreneurship dominates. The challenge is to dynamize entrepreneurship but also to foster industrial change. Synergies between creativity and industry is an objective sought after, in line with the Lisbon agenda, but often not attained at a regional level. A European dimension may enable synergies and attainment of critical mass. Cities and regions have struggled in defining policies for creative industries. ORGANZA brings together cities and regions with different profiles of creative sectors, which enables capitalisation from the project results.

Partners in ORGANZA may be at the stage of policy inception, at the stage of studies or stakeholder consultations, they may have developed instruments (promotion actions, incubators, training programs etc…) or they may have integrated several instruments in a coherent framework or extended policies for creative industries to other areas. ORGANZA brings together partners at different stages of policy making and with different models of policy development in terms of competences and means, in terms of articulation between local and national policies and in form of implementation. ORGANZA enables regions to understand the relevance of policies with regard to their specific competences. Results also enable structured understanding by non-partner regions. The involvement of public authorities in ORGANZA will enable to understand how to leverage results from past, current and future ERDF funded projects for creative industries.

The ORGANZA project is structured around a strong methodological core. This is required since it is a new policy area, hence a taxonomy of collecting regional profiles and experiences is an important element. A structured database with search engine enables systematic access, customized to the profile of the interested region. ORGANZA then entails a collection and validation of experiences including stakeholder assessment. From this systematic collection, a limited set of inspiring practices is selected for transfer. Limited pilot actions will focus on the three stages of the policy process: inception, instrumentation and integration. ORGANZA includes capacity building in the form of seminars as well as dissemination actions with a focus on stakeholders. The project is set up in order to prepare for regional action plans and possibly a Interreg IVc Capitalisation project.

Project achievements

At the beginning of 2010, 13 organizations from all over Europe gathered in Arnhem, the Netherlands, to launch the Organza project. The conference kickstarted the project’s activities that lasted for three years. Organza is a unique interregional collaboration between organizations with an expertise in creative entrepreneurship, innovation, design support, education and the like. Building on the partners’ varied experiences and contexts, Organza aimed to investigate the necessary conditions for the success of creative and designled industries, by bringing together 13 partners with different models of policy development and which are at different stages of policy making.


The project started with generating a better understanding of creative environment in each partner region. In first year of Organza, good practices were identified in 9 regions covered by the project. The good practices were further assessed via regional visits, where each region was visited by at least 3 project partners. The insights gained through these visits combined with research carried out by partners resulted in regional profiles for all partner regions, underlying the conditions surrounding creative industries in each. Within the second year of the project, out of more than 60 practices identified, 9 were defined as most inspiring and best suitable to be adapted in other regions, coming from The Netherlands, United Kingdom, Belgium, Germany, Romania and Italy . To share the knowledge of these practices, interregional seminars have taken place in Nottingham (UK), Treviso (IT), Arnhem (NL) and Iasi (RO) for Organza project partners and local stakeholders.


The final year of the project was dedicated to pilot actions - adapting the most inspiring practices in other partner regions with active involvement of local stakeholders.The pilots concentrated on five main themes in the realm of the support and development of creative industries: networking, coaching entrepreneurship, financial instruments, crossovers and urban upgrading. With the completion of these pilot projects the Organza project has finally resulted in a range of inspiring initiatives for policy development for the creative industry. Most of the pilot plans have found a first foothold in their region and as work in progress they may pave the way for similar and other initiatives that support creative industries to be established in the near future.

The Organza project concluded with final conference in Bremen (DE) discussing with participants from policy stakeholders to creative entrepreneurs on the future direction of creative industries. Among the project results is a database with 70 inspiring practices aimed at policy makers and creatives across Europe to improve policy making in the field creative industries and strengthening regional economies, by adapting the steps in detail described steps of Organza process. Together with the Interreg-IVC projects CREA.RE, SEE platform, Creative Metropolis and Incompass the Organza-project prepared joint policy recommondations for cultural and creative industries which were officially handed to the European Commission, DG Enterprise in November 2012 in Ghent.


Institution, Town Country Region Contact details
Municipality of Arnhem, Arnhem NETHERLANDS Gelderland 31(0)273774575
ArtEZ Institute of the Arts, Arnhem NETHERLANDS Gelderland 0031-263535722
WFB Bremen - Economic Development, Bremen GERMANY Bremen 0049(0)421-960010
Cotton Textile and Clothing Centre, Busto Arsizio (VA) ITALY Lombardia 0039(0)331696711
City Hall of Iasi, Iasi ROMANIA Nord-Est 40(0)232211215
"Gheorghe Asachi" Technical University Iasi, Iasi ROMANIA Nord-Est 0040(0)232268783/1231
City of Presov, Municipality, Presov SLOVAKIA Vychodne Slovensko 0042(0)1513100101
Technical University of Kosice, Faculty of Manufacturing Technologies with a seat in Presov, Presov SLOVAKIA Vychodne Slovensko 0042(0)1517721360
Nottingham Trent University, Nottingham UNITED KINGDOM Derbyshire and Nottinghamshire 0044(0)1159418418
Design Flanders, Brussels BELGIUM Région de Bruxelles-Capitale / Brussels Hoofdstedelijk Gewest 32(0)22276060
Treviso Tecnologia, Treviso ITALY Veneto 0039(0)422608858
Varese Chamber of Commerce, Varese ITALY Lombardia 39(0)332295466
Innovation and Technology Agency of Navarra S.A., Pamplona SPAIN Comunidad Foral de Navarra 34(0)948206776
European Business Innovation Centre of Navarra S.A., Noáin SPAIN Comunidad Foral de Navarra +34(0)848426045


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