Helsinki will join World Cities Culture Forum, which is a network of the leading cultural cities worldwide established at the initiative of London. Membership in World Cities Culture Forum will support Helsinki’s brand as an international city of culture and strengthen Helsinki’s networks with culture-friendly metropolises.
As a member of World Cities Culture Forum, Helsinki will obtain, for the first time, reliable data for comparative analyses of the status of art and culture in Helsinki in relation to cities in other countries. World Cities Culture Forum produces an annual survey report that compares member cities with the help of 70 cultural indicators. Helsinki can use the network to market its expertise in art and culture, and the network can help Helsinki to find new ways to support art and culture.
The network currently consists of more than 30 cities throughout the world. The Nordic members so far have been Stockholm and Oslo. The initiative for Helsinki to join the network came from Mayor of London Sadiq Khan.
The Helsinki City Board made the decision to join World Cities Culture Forum at its meeting of 22 October 2018. The City Board allocated 17,500 euros to the Culture and Leisure Division to be used to pay the first year’s membership fee. The membership fee for subsequent years will be 8,500 euros per year. Among other services, the fee gives Helsinki access to the network’s databases.
Third Baltic Sea action plan
At its meeting of 22 October 2018, the City Board also approved Helsinki’s share in the third joint action plan of Helsinki and Turku for the protection of the Baltic Sea in 2019–2023.
Helsinki and Turku announced their first joint Baltic Sea action plan in 2007. In the same connection, the cities launched the Baltic Sea Challenge. To date, the challenge’s network has been joined by 270 organizations in Finland and other Baltic Sea countries.