SEMINAR SERIES “Cultural Mega-events and Urban Heritage: Threats and Opportunities for European Cities”

Place and Dates

Politecnico di Milano, Leanardo Campus in Milan

Wednesdays at 4.30pm from the 20th of March until April 17th 2019


In recent years, mega-events have begun to lose their appeal in Western cities and are increasingly encountering resistance. In response, their programming is changing the way they relate to the city, to reduce costs and better facilitate the management of the event’s legacy. This has included re-using existing infrastructures and intervening in historic places rather than creating large platforms on the outskirts. In Europe, this can expose cities and their cultural heritage to new risks, particularly in the most fragile territorial and cultural contexts. At the same time, the presence of major events can also serve as an opportunity for the enhancement of heritage and for the development of the city.


The seminar series “Cultural Mega-events and Urban Heritage” invites international experts to explore this controversial topic for the first time through examples of mega-cultural events (such as the European Capital of Culture of Wroclaw 2016, Pafos 2017 and Matera 2019).

20 March 2019, 16:30, room GAMMA

Sampo Ruoppila (University of Turku): “Effects of Turku 2011 European Capital of Culture: a long-term perspective”


27 March 2019, 16:30, room S1.4

Enrico Tommarchi (University of Hull): “Mega-events and heritage: learning, legacies and the urban space in the case of Hull UK City of Culture 2017”


3 April 2019, 16:30, room GAMMA

Evanthia Dova (Neapolis University Pafos): “Fast Events and Slow Heritage: The case of Pafos 2017 European Capital of Culture”


10 April, 16:30, room GAMMA

Mariavaleria Mininni (Università della Basilicata): “Matera-Basilicata 2019: Events, heritage and ongoing analysis of their urban effects”


17 April 2019,16:30, room GAMMA

Jacek Purchla (International Cultural Center): “The Politics of Heritage and the Urban Economy of Mega-events: Kraków 2000 and Wroclaw 2016 two Polish European Capitals of Culture contrasted”


Full program available here


All seminars took place at Politecnico di Milano, Leonardo Campus in Milan and were supported by the DAStU Department, the JPICH HOMEE project, and the Dipartimento di Eccellenza program.


Contacts and information:


Place and Date

Politecnico di Milano – Aula Gamma, March 6, 2019


Harvey Molotch, New York University

Davide Ponzini, Politecnico di Milano



Yasser Elsheshtawy (Columbia University)

Carolina Pacchi (Politecnico di Milano)

Valeria Talbot (ISPI – Istituto per gli Studi di Politica Internazionale)

Serena Vicari (University of Milan Bicocca)



Stefano Moroni (Politecnico di Milano)


Third Symposium at Villa Vigoni

Flagship Architecture, Multinational Design Firms and the Urban Transformation of European Cities (2019)

“Flagship Architecture, Multinational Design Firms and the Urban Transformation of European Cities” is a series of international symposia. The aim is to discuss the urban implications of star architecture and transnational projects with particular reference to European cities. The third and final symposium took place at Villa Vigoni.

Date and Place
October 8-9, 2019 at Villa Vigoni in Menaggio, Italy


Nadia Alaily-Mattar (TU Munich)

Magda Bolzoni (University of Turin)

Alain Bourdin (Ecole d’Urbanisme de Paris)

Johannes Dreher (HafenCity University)

Uta Leconte (TU Munich)

Maria Gravari-Barbas (Paris 1 Pantéon-Sorbonne University)

Michele Nastasi (independent researcher)

Davide Ponzini (Politecnico di Milano)

Jan Silberger (ETH Zurich)

Alain Thierstein (TU Munich)

Alberto Vanolo (University of Turin)

Davide Ponzini (Politecnico di Milano), Alain Thierstein (TU Munich) and Maria Gravari-Barbas (Université Paris 1 Pantéon-Sorbonne)