The shortlisted cities for the title of European Capital of Smart Tourism 2022 were selected on the basis of applications received from 16 European countries. Ljubljana is flanked by Bordeaux in France, Copenhagen in Denmark, Dublin in Ireland, Florence in Italy and Palma and Valencia in Spain. The independent panel of experts, which evaluated the applications in the first phase of the competition, determined the set of seven selected cities through an analysis of practices in four competition categories: Accessibility, Sustainability, Digitalisation as well as Cultural heritage and creativity. In the second stage of evaluation, cities will present their candidaturs and programme of activities planned for 2022.
Both winning cities, which will be announced in a month, will receive communication support that will further contribute to brand recognition and will include a promotional video, a purpose-built sculpture that will prominently mark the title of the winning place and other promotional activities that will contribute to the visibility of the destination at European level.
A sustainable and digitalised capital
The European Capital of Smart Tourism 2022 is the third edition of such competition. Ljubljana was awarded both times, in 2018 as the best city in the field of sustainable development and in 2019 for progress in the digitalisation of the city.
The European Capital of Smart Tourism is an EU initiative, currently financed under the COSME Programme. It is built on the successful experience of the Preparatory Action proposed by the European Parliament and implemented by the European Commission in 2019 and 2020. It aims to promote smart tourism in the EU, foster innovative, sustainable and inclusive tourism development, as well as spread and facilitate the exchange of best practices.
So far, the jury has recognized some of the more important projects executed in Ljubljana to be Green Supply Chain, Tastes of Ljubljana, connecting primary schools with local food producers, zero waste management measures, increasing public green spaces, pedestrian zones, the introduction of a tourist train, urban beekeeping, new hiking routes in the region, the Ljubljana by Wheelchair application, the sharing electric cars Avant2GO, the upgrade of Nexto mobile applications and more.