About the project

About the project

Throughout the activities of “All for Pogon - Pogon for all!” we worked on upgrading the existing model of governance of Pogon, including in educational, research, cultural and promotional activities all of those who govern Pogon and those who use it.

All for Pogon - Pogon for All

During the last 20 years the notion of participation has been in everyday use, on the level of public politics as well as in exertions of different stakeholders, to bring those public politics to life. Participatory processes became the key component in the cultural area. The participation of citizens on various levels and in different formats of approach, whether in cultural content, goods and services or through decision making mechanisms, is considered today as one of the more important questions in the domain of cultural and artistic practices and in cultural politics. However, it is necessary also to decentralize participatory processes: connecting citizen participation with the local level and importing strengthened forms of participation into the local community leads to stronger democratic processes as well as to strengthening of the community itself. One of the mechanisms of those forms of participation is civic-public partnership in culture which has been developing in Croatia since the early 2000s. In 2005 cultural and youth organizations began their advocacy for spaces for their work and production of cultural and artistic content, which in 2008 resulted in the founding of Pogon, which represents the prototype of a new institutionalized format in culture in Croatia. It is based on a horizontal structure and shared responsibilities. This kind of approach, where an institution is co-governed by the local government and civil society has proven to be one of the most important approaches of governing in culture, in cities that want to innovate and assure the wellbeing of their citizens. However, it was made clear that the understanding of civic-public partnership was not fully understood by all stakeholders involved and that the advantages that this kind of partnership brings were not sufficiently visible or promoted. Also, recent researches indicated that citizens lose their interest in participation more and more and that participatory political culture is not particularly developed. Although citizens of the European Union in general recognize the importance of culture, data indicates there is a low level of cultural participation, and the cultural consumption in Croatia fell from 77€ to 68€ per resident annually. Therefore, ten years after the founding of Pogon, the model of participatory governing of this institution had to be evaluated and improved, and the necessities of stakeholders involved re-examined. The intent was also to analyze and document other endeavors of establishing participatory models of governance in Zagreb in the last twenty years as to develop recommendations for future initiatives for participatory governance and to look at lessons learned.

The cooperation of civil society, employees of the local government and cultural institutions and citizens as co-creators and consumers of cultural and artistic programs was directed to painstakingly look at the existing model of governance, testing its improvements and educating about examples of good practice based on our own and European experiences.

The total financial value of the project was 2. 467.903,51 HRK, and the European Union co-funded the project through the European Social Fund in the amount of 2.097.717,98 HRK. Leading partner was Operation City, and along with Pogon, partners included in the project were the City of Zagreb and Kurziv - Platform for questions of culture, media and society. The project was carried out from December 1st 2018 to November 30th 2020. For more information about the project contact Matea Munitić Mihovilović.