Creating an Impact

Liverpool’s experience as European Capital of Culture

Tamsin Cox, Ruth Melville, and Beatriz Garcia

This report is a summary of the key findings and core messages of Impacts 08, the research programme evaluating the impacts of Liverpool, European Capital of Culture 2008 (Liverpool ECoC) on the city, the wider region and its people. Impacts 08 is a five-year joint initiative between the University of Liverpool and Liverpool John Moores University, commissioned by Liverpool City Council for the period 2005 to 2010.

Impacts 08 has delivered four main outcomes:

  • The longitudinal impact analysis of the Liverpool ECoC as delivered by a wide range of stakeholders, which retrospectively covered Liverpool’s pre-bid period (2000), through the bidding and nomination stages (2002-2003), event lead-up (2004-2007), the event year itself (2008) and beyond (early 2009).
  • An enhanced evidence base for the multiple impacts of culture upon regeneration and city renaissance, which has assisted local and regional cultural planning as well as informing the UK national debate.
  • The provision of intelligence to guide decision-making for the Liverpool ECoC delivery team.
  • The legacy of a replicable research framework, which can be used to explore the impacts of culture-led regeneration programmes beyond Liverpool and 2008.