Press release from Ministry of Culture

Gothenburg to become Sweden’s first literature city in UNESCO Creative Cities Network


Gothenburg has been admitted to the UNESCO Creative Cities Network (UCCN) in the field of literature. It will be Sweden’s third city in the UNESCO network.

– Gothenburg has a long history of compelling work in the field of literature, and the city’s admission to the UCCN is an extension of that work. Throughout the years, Gothenburg has also been a model for inclusion, and its initiatives to promote writing and reading among the city’s non-native Swedish speakers are especially impressive. Being Sweden’s first literature city is very exciting not only for Gothenburg, but the entire literary community in Sweden, says Minister for Culture and Democracy Amanda Lind.

The aim of the network is to strengthen collaboration between cities where creativity is central to their identity. Their work is also strategic to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals of the 2030 Agenda. The global network currently comprises 295 cities.

Gothenburg was admitted to the network based on its already vibrant community of non-profit organisations and its literary community, complemented by welfare initiatives, reading promotion projects and international collaborations. The city is home to a number of thriving professional and non-profit literary organisations, literature festivals and the Gothenburg Book Fair, which is the Nordic region’s largest international cultural event. The application to join the network is backed by several stakeholders, including the City of Gothenburg, the University of Gothenburg, Region Västra Götaland, the Writers' Centre, the Gothenburg Book Fair, Göteborgs Litteraturhus (Gothenburg House of Literature), Swedish PEN and the Swedish Authors’ fund.

The other two Swedish cities represented in the network are Östersund, which became Sweden’s first creative city in 2010 in the field of gastronomy, and Norrköping, which joined the network in 2017 in the field of music.

Press contact

Desha Svenneborg
Press Secretary to Minister for Culture and Democracy, with responsibility for sport Amanda Lind
Phone (switchboard) +46 8 405 10 00
Mobile +46 73 093 50 60
email to Desha Svenneborg