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Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs

Creative Europe Programme

This webpage covers the Creative Europe Programme strictly as part of funding projects related to tourism.

Why is it relevant to tourism?

Creative Europe is the European Union's programme for support to the cultural and creative sectors, including the audiovisual sector. The general objectives of the Creative Europe programme are to

  • safeguard, develop and promote European cultural and linguistic diversity and heritage
  • increase the competitiveness and  economic potential of the cultural and creative sectors, particularly the audiovisual sector.

The programme supports projects that promote contemporary European creative works and heritage (covering intangible, tangible and industrial outputs). This includes architecture, music, literature, the performing arts, films, festivals, cultural tourism, and flagship initiatives such as the European Capitals of Culture (ECOC) or European Heritage Days.

Tourism funding criteria

The programme covers the following strands:

  • CULTURE: cultural and creative sectors, apart from the the audiovisual sector
  • MEDIA: the audiovisual sector
  • CROSS-SECTORAL: activities across all cultural and creative sectors

The ECOC scheme is particularly relevant for regional development. It can help finance tourism and cooperation projects or platforms under the horizontal actions of the CULTURE strand. Cultural events like music or performing arts festivals are also eligible for funding. In the MEDIA strand, film festivals and markets may play a role in national and international tourism. In addition, city branding through culture contributes to the value of urban areas, thereby attracting more visitors.

Furthermore, the programme’s CULTURE strand provides for sectoral actions, including developing the creative aspects of the design and fashion sectors, along with sustainable cultural tourism.These sectors are also promoted and represented outside the EU.

Programme details

The programme has the following specific objectives related to each strand

  • CULTURE: enhance artistic and cultural cooperation at a European level to support the creation of works. Strengthen the economic, social and public aspects of the cultural and creative sectors. Improve innovation and mobility.
  • MEDIA: promote the competitiveness, scalability, cooperation, innovation, sustainability and mobility  of the European audiovisual sector.
  • CROSS-SECTORAL: promote policy cooperation and innovative actions to support all strands of the programme. Promote media literacy and a diverse, independent and pluralistic media environment.

Additional information

Examples of supported projects

Project Title: Heritage for PEOPLE

Description: The project “VerSus+ / Heritage for PEOPLE” focuses on raising public awareness about material and intangible heritage conservation, and more sustainable architecture.  

The project pays special attention to

  • Children and young people
  • Local, regional and national heritage management authorities
  • Experts and specialists in architecture
  • Craftsmen
  • Construction and tourism companies
  • Cultural, educational and social organisations

It also intends to include migrants and refugees as a way of introducing them to the local culture. Initiatives intend to demonstrate the lessons that can be learned from vernacular heritage for future society. They are carried out in places where this heritage is under pressure from mass tourism and other changes. For example, islands and archipelagos with available administrative, technical and social partners.  

These pilot projects are designed as a testing ground for implementing actions in social participation, education, communication and promotion in several contexts and through different media.The present project intends to highlight the sustainable aspects of life on islands, archipelagos and other geographically-limited areas. An approach will be drawn up from this initiative to be applied to other situations. The experiences of each island will also provide perspectives for best practices and skills development in the entire country in question.

In addition, promotion and support from associate partners will make it possible to apply these experiences to other similar European and international cases.

EU contribution: €197.250,00

More information

Official website

Project Title: (a)Live Now

Description: “In Europe the arts are just a festival away” is the slogan of the recently launched interactive search engine and online portal It is a result of the pilot project Europe for Festivals, Festivals for Europe (EFFE) which drove 2,000 festivals to register on the site by 19 September 2019.

Having focused on getting festivals to sign up, (a)Live Now has now launched this tool with partners from 6 different sectors and perspectives: festivals, cities, national tourism boards, the press, academia and tech.The ultimate goal is to increase audience access to the arts and provide information on the rich diversity of festivals across Europe.

EU contribution: €199,437

Level of EU funding: 60%

More information

Official website

Database of examples

Creative Europe database

Using the search term “tourism” in the above database will help you find the most relevant results.