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Project information

Project team

Thilo Lang, Andreas Wust, Franziska Görmar


Municipality of Leoben, University of Graz, Austria; Stebo Competence Centre Community Development, Belgium; Sisak-Moslavina County, Croatia; County association of Local action groups (LAGs) of Karlovy Vary Region, Czech Republic; District of Zwickau, Germany; Padova Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Craft and Agriculture, Italy; Opolskie Centre for Economy Development, Poland; BSC – Business support centre ltd., Kranj, Slovenia

Duration of project

06/2016 – 05/2019

Funded by

Europäische Union, Programm CENTRAL EUROPE

Further information

Andreas Wust
Tel.: +49 341 600 55-172
InduCult2.0 project website

Project website InduCult2.0

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Industrial Heritage, Cultural Resources of Current Industries and Creative Pioneers – InduCult2.0

Utilizing Industrial Culture in Central Europe

In the context of major societal and economic changes, Europe’s industrial societies have transformed into networked information societies that are increasingly based on knowledge-intensive services and creative industries. However, these developments are affecting territories in very different ways. Whilst urban agglomerations are preferred locations of the knowledge economy, smaller towns in rural environments become peripheralised. They often continue to have a small industrial base, but they do not equally succeed in attracting the knowledge economy.

InduCult2.0 brings together such regions with a distinct industrial past and present, situated outside major agglomeration areas in Central Europe. In the recent years, all of them have undergone deep transformation processes due to automation, adaptation to globalized production patterns and the opening of markets in the former state-led economies, thereby reflecting the growing economic and social disparities across Central Europe. The long economic predominance of industrial production has brought about a particular cultural setting in the project partners’ territories. It is made up of certain skills, attitudes, traditions as well as tangible monuments and artefacts. However, these regions are usually considered culturally less attractive and they are not utilizing the existing industrial culture to their full development potential.

The concept of Industrial Culture, fundamental to the project, is innovative by itself: So far, industrial culture has been a term used as a synonym for industrial heritage. Only recently, a re-interpretation as Industrial Culture has been heralded, going beyond heritage issues by including contemporary or upcoming cultural and creative resources. Whilst some aspects of this conceptual framework of Industrial Culture are already applied in some places, there is no comprehensive outline available yet. The strategic and scientific outputs of InduCult2.0 provide for the first time a full overview of the potential of this concept. Pilot actions prove its practical capability and serve as examples for exchange.

With InduCult2.0, we wanted to revive the cultural spirit of long-standing industrial regions in Central Europe. Together with local stakeholders, we rediscovered and developed the positive elements of industrial communities. Specifically, project partners intended to:

  • promote and establish the idea of Industrial Culture in Central Europe,
  • strengthen the distinct culture of industrial regions and utilise it as location factor,
  • empower industrial regions by re-activating their pioneer spirit.

Scientists at IfL and University of Graz, Austria, have supported and reflected these activities. Furthermore, the project team developed an interactive mapping tool to visualize Industrial Culture.


Görmar, F. / Harfst, J. Path (2019): Renewal or Path Dependence? The Role of Industrial Culture in Regional Restructuring. Urban Science 2019, 3, 106. Online

Görmar, Franziska / Harfst, Jörn / Simic, Danko / Wust, Andreas (2019): The transformative power of industrial culture – from concepts to actions. Graz (Grazer Schriften der Geographie und Raumforschung, 49). Online / PDF

Görmar, Franziska / Wust, Andreas / Metalidis, Ina / Debes, Carsten / Harfst, Jörn (2018): The transformative power of industrial culture – a dynamic approach to the cultur of industrial regions. Broschüre, 40 S. E-Paper

Wust, Andreas / Lang, Thilo / Haunstein, Stefan et al. (2017): Strategic potential of industrial culture for regional development. InduCult2.0 Framework Paper (Final Version 31 May 2017). PDF

Wust, Andreas / Lang, Thilo / Haunstein, Stefan / Mäekivi, Epp et al. (2017): Industrial culture, labour force and companies.Academic recommendations for practical intervention on how to deploy Industrial Culture for securing abour force and strengthening the regional ties of companies. InduCult2.0 Research Input Paper T3 (Final Version May 2017).