Accepted paper:

Bicycle as the means of transport, actor of social events and business opportunity: the case study of cycling-related creativity in Ljubljana


Saša Poljak Istenič (ZRC SAZU)

Paper short abstract:

The presentation discusses the importance of socially and ecologically conscious creative activities in Ljubljana, related to urban cycling, for the economic success of actors, quality of urban life and the appealing image of a city, which is also important for the development of creative economy.

Paper long abstract:

The capital of Slovenia, Ljubljana, has recently won the title of the European Green Capital 2016 due to its sustainability strategy, progress in the area of green procurement and increase of eco-friendly modes of transport such as cycling. Over 1.6 million journeys were made using the city's bike-sharing system from 2011 to 2014, and the number of bike-related activities in public space is constantly growing. But bicycles do not remain only one of the means of urban transport, but have become the object of individuals' creativity as well as the bond for members of various social groups. The presentation is a case-study of creativity in Ljubljana inspired by urban cycling. It will focus on the social actors, as individuals or joined in the associations, who organize or perform activities which revive public places, promote anti-consumerist philosophy, encourage ecologically-friendly and sustainable practices and have subsequently inspired the development of some cycling-related small-scale businesses. The presentation will strive to show the correlation between social and cultural capital of creative individuals and their economic success. The author assumes that creativity of social actors, oriented towards preservation or strengthening of social values or compliant with them, contributes to the quality of life of urban population and helps to create an appealing image of a city, which is also important for the development of the cultural and creative industries.

panel Urba003
Ethnographies of urban public spaces