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2019.06.14 2019.06.14

Bucheon 2021 - candidate city for the 15th UCCN Annual Conference

Bucheon 2021 - candidate city for the 15th UCCN Annual Conference

Period 14 June 2019 ~ 14 June 2019
Location Fabriano

What is UCCN Annual Conference?


(Bucheon's bid is posted on this webpage!)

“UNESCO Creative Cities Network Annual Conferences offer a unique occasion to strengthen the ties between cities from around the world and serves as a platform to define the strategic objectives of an expanded and well-balanced Network. ”

Last May, Bucheon submitted a bid to host the 15th UCCN Annual Conference to be held in 2021. In early June, the UCCN Secretariat announced the selection of Bucheon (Republic of Korea), Istanbul (Turkey), Medellín (Colombia) as candidates for the 2021 15th UCCN Annual Conference Host City.

Every host city candidate is given the opportunity to speak to the audience about their bids during the closing ceremony of the annual gathering. Accordingly, Bucheon made the presentation on the last day of the 2019 13th Annual Conference held in Fabriano, followed by Santos, the next UCCN Annual Conference Host City.



What can Bucheon offer?

Reasons to Choose Bucheon

-  Citizens and the city government who are passionate about realizing the mission of UCCN;
-  Strong support of the Government of the Republic of Korea, Gyeonggi Provincial Government  Korean National Commission for UNESCO;

-  Member city of the UNESCO Global Network of Learning Cities and UCCN;
-  The city’s transversal creativeness in :
  1) Literature: Suju Literary Festival, Pearl Buck Festival, Bucheon Book Festival
  2) Film : Bucheon International Fantastic Film Festival(BIFAN) since 1997
  3) Animation : Bucheon International Animation Festival(BIAF) since 1999
  4) Comics : Bucheon International Comics Festival(BICOF) since 1998
  5) Music : Bucheon Philharmonic Orchestra, Bucheon Civic Chorale
  6) Crafts and Folk Art : Onggi Museum, Bow Museum
  7) Gastronomy : Kimchi Theme Park
  8) Media Arts: Bucheon Media Center

- Experiences in urban sustainable development: Having transformed from an industrial city to a cultural  city, Bucheon can share its experiences in implementing urban regeneration projects and tackling environmental problems;

- Expertise in organizing international conventions such as BIFAN and BIAF and partnerships with professional conference organizers;

-  Convenient access through :
 1) Incheon International Airport(ICN) : 29km/30 minutes from Bucheon
 2) Gimpo International Airport(GMP): 12km/10 minutes from Bucheon
- Commitment for networking and supporting cities in African and Arab States to join UCCN;
- Innovative ICT technology to manage the expanding size of the Annual Conference
- Opportunities to visit Creative Cities in the Republic of Korea covering all seven creative fields after the conference


Bucheon is a city of culture that experienced rapid industralization in the 20th century. As part of Korea’s process of modernization, many factories were constructed in Bucheon, attracting a lot of young people from all over Korea. Those workers were poor but passionate about education, so they studied together at night after work. This led Bucheon to grow into one of the main strongholds of Korea’s labor and democratization movements.


In the process of fighting against the side effects of rapid urbanization and industrialization, hope for sustainable urban living came to the fore and became the main driver that pushed Bucheon forward.


Bucheon would like to share its experiences to integrate culture into sustainable urban development policies through providing a platform where all creative cities gather together, emphasize and enhance cultures’ capacity to connect peoples and communities.


Theme : “Reinventing Creative Cities for the SDGs : Reviewing and Re-visioning.”


The year 2021 represents the halfway mark of the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Against this background, the city of Bucheon would like to propose the theme “Reinventing Creative Cities for the SDGs: Reviewing and Re-visioning.”

In light of the SDGs, it is time for us to reinvent creative cities and look ahead to the future by reflecting on what we have achieved so far and realigning our focus and objectives. The year 2021 will be a time for us to identify goals and targets that we have not yet achieved, and reaffirm our commitment to achieving the SDGs.


A City of Youth Culture

Creative driving force attracted many young artists and creators to Bucheon. Different cultures interacted with each other and inspired one other, paving the way for the development of comics, animation, and film in Bucheon. Bucheon hosts large annual international festivals for comics, animation and film, in addition to a B-Boy championship. Bucheon has moved beyond a city of learning to become a city of vibrant energy.


A Smart City: Security, Safety, and Convenience

The emergence of Bucheon is related to its good location. Bucheon is located between Seoul, the capital of Korea, and Incheon International Airport, which is connected to 188 cities around the world and known for its high quality of service.

Thanks to the convenient public transportation system, you can easily travel to Incheon or Seoul in less than an hour for the cost of about one Euro. Moreover, there are many 24-hour-restaurants in Bucheon, and it is safe to move around the city at any time of the day, even late at night.


How We Will Prepare for the Conference

Bucheon’s creativity paved the way for the construction of a variety of cultural facilities. Factories and other former industrial facilities have been replaced with arts and cultural spaces, and the people and the city are growing together!


If Bucheon is offered the chance to host the conference, the main meeting venue will be Art Bunker 39, an art space that was built by remodeling an old garbage incineration plant. It is a very special place in Bucheon, not only a symbol of urban regeneration but also a center of Bucheon creativity for the future.

It is expected that all seven subgroup meetings can take place in one location with the aim of promoting collaborative projects and mutual growth.



To further extend the UCCN to the global south, we are planning to invite cities from African and Arab states to an international symposium right before the conference to encourage them to join the network.


We will make the conference dynamic and state-of-the-art through cutting-edge ICT technology and support from leading Korean IoT companies.


We will also arrange educational tours after the official conference upon the request of attendees. These include tours of historical locations related to Korea’s democratic history.


Last but not the least, there are e UNESCO Creative Cities covering all the seven different creative fields in Korea. It will be very interesting to arrange study visits or joint activities in cooperation with other Korean Creative Cities.





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