Some of the essays explore existing research and theory about cosmopolitanism and apply it to specific case studies; others attempt to extend this theoretical framework and engage in a dialogue with the broader disciplines of media and cultural studies. Overall, this variety of approaches generates valuable insights into the central issue of the book: the role played by the media, in its various forms, in either encouraging or discouraging cosmopolitanist identifications among its audiences.
The Cosmopolitan City: Music and Mediation During the European Capital of Culture Event
European Capitals of Culture are now an accepted and important part of the European cultural scene. Since its origin in 1985, some 38 cities have secured and implemented activities under the ECOC banner (or its predecessor). In some ways, ECOC have indeed become ‘big business’, attracting growing attention and subject to increasing scrutiny.
—ECOTEC 2009: 1
The European Capital of Culture programme (ECOC), an initiative launched by the European Union in 1985, operates particularly in the context of broad urban regeneration of de-industrializing cities by utilizing cultural capital for long-term economic and social change towards a secure post-industrial future (Griffiths 2006: 418). The purpose of the ECOC title is both to highlight existing cultural excellence and to encourage cities to develop and innovate through culture, to enhance regeneration, social inclusion, education and business (Isaacs 2003: 2), whereby culture is regarded as a wide variety of popular and ‘high’ art expressions that resides in and grows out of the daily lives of a city’s local communities. The ECOC programme thus plays an important role in urban economic and cultural reconstruction strategies for de-industrializing cities in Europe (Richards 2000).
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