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Interreg Baltic Sea Region (IBSR) Programme

Amongst all projects submitted for funding from the Interreg Baltic Sea Region Programme, its Monitoring Commitee decides on a certain number of the projects to receive funding. Core projects are the main tool to deliver the change that Interreg Baltic Sea Region aims at. Core projects prepare, pilot and transfer practical and durable solutions to the challenges they choose to tackle. In the 1st and 2nd call, in 2023, in total 5 core projects related to the Policy Area (PA) Culture were selected:

First Call:

AoP (Arts on Prescription)

BSR CP (Baltic Sea Region Cultural Pearls)

BSG-Go (Baltic Sea Game Support)

Second Call:

CCC (Creative Circular Cities)

MI-RAP (Music Industry Resilience Acceleration Programme)

In addition to core projects, the Programme funds small projects that offer simpler application and implementation processes and in particular address those who have not applied to the Programme before. In the 1st and 2nd call, in 2023, in total 5 small projects related to the Policy Area (PA) Culture were selected:

First Call:

BaMuR (Baltic Museum Resilience)

Second Call:

BALTIC-UKH (Urban Knowledge Hubs)

CCI4Change (Culture and Creative Industries for Change)

CF in the BSR (Circular Foodshift in the Baltic countries)

MainPotRe: Maintenance and scaling up potato growing and consumption heritage for resilient communities


PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies
Objective: 1.2 Responsive public services 

Arts on Prescription in the Baltic Sea Region 


Through the Arts on Prescription project. individuals with endangered mental health receive a medical prescription to create art works in groups, which has evident benefits on the well-being, transforming  the cultural representation of mental health. 

After a mental health issue such as stress or anxiety has been diagnosed or considered probable, usually therapies and medicines are suggested. This project provides a third option with creating art in a comfortable group setting. But the implementation may confront the public authorities with some obstacles: Lacking cooperation between the health and cultural sector, not enough knowledge about project management and the issue of long-term financing may be some of these. 


The project will try to leverate these burdens and also conduct a pilot project beforehand. This serves the discernment of the actual effects of art and social creativity on the psyche and has already begun in October of 2023. In the evaluation process, the economic outcome and organisational strategies will also be  looked at. Soon the collaboration with other regions will follow.

More info, news, lead partners and contact  

PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies

Objective: 1.1 Resilient economies and communities 

BSR (Baltic Sea Region) Cultural Pearls 


The Cultural Pearls programme strives for a more participatory cultural landscape to augment the resilience and social connected`ness of small cities or regions. 

Culture is an essential fundament of a vibrant urban life, uniting the society in creative processes. When different actors engage in the regional culture, they find common ground in shared values, thus strenghtening the solidarity and social cohesion. 

Local public authorities of smaller peripheral cities with decreasing life quality should try to counteract this downward spiral. In such regions the societal connectedness fades and civil participation across all cultural sectors deminishes significantly. Often times the city’s appeal keeps decaying because of a lack of capacities, innovative strategies and tools. 


BSR Cultural Pearls supports the authorities through three steps in ending the discribed vicious cycle: 

  1. The development of a „cultural and social action plan“

  2. The selection and promotion of a few outstanding applicants with the title of 'Cultural Pearl'

  3. The implementation of the action plans in a peer-to-peer-learning environment 

These winners have already been chosen for 2024 and are sure to gain visibility and inspiration through national and international relationships in their title year. The next application round will start in April 2024.


More info, news, lead partners and contact  

PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies
Objective: 1.1 Resilient economies and communities 

BSG-Go! Scaling-up Baltic Sea game support for a resilient game industry 


This Interreg project, led by the BGZ (Berliner Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit mbH), is developing methods to enhance the resilience in the game industry. The created tactics shall also be adaptable to other sectors like the cultural and creative industries (CCI) and create a safety net in case of future crises.

In the past years, surely all industries have gained valuable insights about their own resilience practices. Resilience, meaning the recovery from setbacks, consists of pro-active evaluation to not only return to a stable state, but also improve and strengthen socioeconomic structures. Although the gaming industry has shown to be fit for circumstances such as COVID-19, in which the mobility and communication is restricted, some weaknesses became apparent as well. For example the communication between the young creative entreponeurs and the bilateral correspondence have potential for improvement. 


BSG-Go! uses the gaming industry as a pilot model for other socioeconomic fields, fosters the already functioning resiliency factors and compensates any lacking areas. Two guidelines provide orientation in the process: 

  1. Communication: The key component for business to thrive in a productive and positive environment 

  2. Anticipatory learning: BSG-go! emphasizes the importance for young talents to realize their opportunities, take responsibility and engage in cross-sectoral work. 

More info, news, lead partners and contact 



PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 3 Climate-neutral societies
Objective: 3.1 Circular economy

CCC (Creative Circular Cities)

In the project Creative Circular Cities, local authorities, business support organisations and NGOs showcase in six demo cities how cultural and creative sectors and industries can trigger circular business growth and promote circular consumption among people.

Circular transition at local level is the key first step towards a comprehensive Circular Economy (CE), as it allows a “system change” that integrates the production & consumption side at manageable scale. However, concrete practices for this are still rare in the BSR. Cultural and Creative Sectors & Industries (CCSI) can be both facilitators of circular consumption and frontrunners for circular production: As a social force, they have great influence on the mind sets of people and can promote “circular lifestyles”. At the same time, they are a business field with high innovation potential that can support circular business models. CCSI, therefore, can be drivers for a comprehensive circular transition at the local level.


CCC initiates a transnational co-creation process, in which 6 demo cities will jointly develop & test CCSI-driven approaches for an integrated circular transition. In each of them, local authorities, business support organisations and NGOs team up to:

  1. Launch enabling environments for CCSI-driven circular transition

  2. Help businesses to create CCSI-supported circular business models

  3. Promote “circular lifestyles” with CCSI assistance.

The results are processed into a “CCC Starter Kit”. It gives interested actors in other BSR cities concrete guidance to involve CCSI into circular transition and is pro-actively disseminated to them. A “CCC Policy Roadmap” facilitates dialogue with policy makers on potentials of the approach & support needs.

More information, lead partners and contact details

PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies
Objective: 1.1 Resilient economies and communities

MI-RAP (Music Industry Resilience Acceleration Programme)

The project MI-RAP helps local authorities, sectoral agencies and business support organisations attract fresh talents to the music industry, while ensuring more cross-sectoral cooperation and integration of emerging technologies and green practices at the same time.

The music sector is a bridge between two forces: the arts and business. Only a resilient, interconnected, and innovative music ecosystem can lay the groundwork for artists to thrive, reach new audiences, and be financially successful. The sector is currently challenged by a difficult economic environment brought on by external shocks (COVID-19, Climate Change) and disruptive technologies. Three main developments endanger its resilience: a shortage of skilled workers; the emergence of new technologies and business models (streaming, AI); and how to green a sector that is based on transnational music exchange. Business support organisations, sectoral agencies and local public authorities have the leverage to increase the sector’s resilience in their local music ecosystems. However, they are lacking knowledge, capacities and tools necessary to put resilience-boosting activities into action.


The solution Music Industry Resilience Acceleration Programme (MI-RAP) will address this challenge through:

  1. Tailored training programs/campaigns to provide workers with skills relevant to work in a changing industry

  2. Strategies/action plans to foster innovation and inner/cross-sectoral collaborations

  3. Guidance to support green practices for resource-intensive music events.

The MI-RAP will be available on an online resource hub and transferable to actors outside of the partnership. Its implementation will support music businesses and artists to flourish, be innovative, and prosperous.

More information, lead partners and contact details



PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies

Objective: 1.1 Resilient economies and communities 

BaMuR (Baltic Museum Resilience) 


Taking the learnings from the COVID crisis, BaMuR is directed towards public authorities in the fields of culture and heritage, non-governmental organisations as well as small- and medium-scale enterprises. The project equips them with a toolkit, usable in periods of stability and especially of crisis like the Russian aggression war against Ukraine, to help secure the consolation role of culture, memory and museums. 

The COVID-pandemic evinced that the societal importance of culture has been underestimated before. Although many cultural institutions tried to compensate the lack of education and entertainment through digital offers, these spontaneous solutions revealed some weak spots: Audience involvement, cooperation and methodical variety were mostly neglected. 


Over the course of 24 months, BaMuR will evaluate the past solutions and create a resiliency solution based on this research and three core focal elements: governance, digital and economical sustainabilty. A pilot phase will follow before the developed solution will be made available for all respective institutions in the Baltic Sea Region. Collaboration is quintessential in the concepts and in the project itself, consisting of Finnish, Polish, Estonian, Swedish and Lithuanian partners. Together they want to increase societal and institutional resilience. 


More info, lead partners and contact 




PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies

Objective: 1.2 Responsive public services 

BALTIC UKH – urban knowledge hubs 

To increase digital literacy, this project gives authorities the methods for the participatory creation of attractive, accessible hybrid spaces of information exchange, so-called urban knowledge hubs. This step is important in the fight against disinformation, which is why the resulting toolkits will be highly adaptable for the use by public authorities in urban or rural regions or by NGOs and educational institutions.

As the need for reliable information exchange grows, there is a gap in the provision of standardized spaces that cater to both physical and digital dimensions. Digital literacy emerges as a fundamental skill in this context, crucial for navigating professional challenges and societal engagement. The absence of established standards for designing such spaces poses a challenge. The project addresses this gap by focusing on participatory design, emphasizing the engagement of diverse groups and individuals. This inclusive approach is key to the success of hybrid information hubs that combat disinformation and propagate knowledge. 


Over the course of this transnational collaborative project, a concept for the creation of such rooms will be released publicly and in five languages in the whole Baltic Sea Region. It will include best practices and methodologies to connect the hybrid space to global information networks, but also keep a local focus. The strategies will be employed and tested in multiple locations. 

More info, lead partners and contacts 

PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 3 Climate-neutral societies

Objective: 3.2 Energy transition 

CCI4Change: Reducing energy consumption 


The project connects entrepreneurs in CCI, referring to cultural and creative industries, to public authorities to cocreatively engage citizens. The reduction of energy consumption requires drastic behavioural changes which CCI4Change aims to encourage by sharing the mutual unique benefits of artistry and outreach. 

The necessary shifts of habits are, for most citizens, complex and difficult to understand as well as execute and authorities lack the encouraging means. Art and culture can help clarify and convince in this matter, which is the reason why this project brings them together. The entrepreneurs gain new collaboration avenues to generate income and express their ideas, whilst authorities get closer to citizens. 


To achieve this, three steps line out the project’s concept: 

  1. Piloting: Firstly a collaboration model will aim to alter the energy consuming behaviours

  2. Toolbox development: Building on these outcomes, CCI4Change will create a toolset with tried methods to face this complex challenge and cooperate

  3. Case studies: To demonstrate the enormous potential behind these partnerships, three detailed case studies will be carried out, revealing the advances towards sustainability goals.


More info, lead partners and contact 



PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 3 Climate-neutral societies

Objective: 3.2 Circular economy 

Circular FoodShift in the Baltic countries 


The project Circular FoodShift provides peri-urban and rural municipalities and regions with the means to transform their food model. The organisers strive to achieve this by reducing waste in schools and gastronomy through the installation of upcycling businesses until the project’s culmination in August 2025. 

Because of our momentary food model, the economy advances, urbanisation and population growth hightens. The current highly profitable system is not compatible with our environmental goals though, making a change towards a circular economy necessary. But local and regional authorities, albeit motivated, often lack methods and knowledge to start this shifting process, which is further impeded by the scarcity of bottom-up collaborations. 


Circular FoodShift aims to foster cross-sectoral cooperation in the Baltic countries and to provide authorities with the tools and policies they need. In the face of growing gastronomy tourism and nutritional health problems, this project is an important pillar in the environmental work and will develop new food systems. 

More info, lead partners and contact


PROGRAMME 2021-2027 - Priority: 1 Innovative societies

Objective: 1.1 Resilient economies and communities 

MainPotRe: Maintenance and scaling up potato growing and consumption heritage in Northern Baltic region to build up resilient communities 


The Estonian, Latvian and Finnish project partners of MainPotRe promote the facilitation of access to potato seeds from genebanks for regional authorities and amateur gardeners alike. Thus, they want to lessen the dependency on other countries and improve the self-sufficiency in times of crises. In addition, potatoes form part of the regional heritage as the main crop grown there with high efficiency and nutritional value, which is why MainPotRe encompasses the distribution of local varieties. 


Since the 19th century potatoes had the greatest impact on the population’s diet and the agricultuhe of the Baltic Sea Region, with Estonia having the highest rank of potatoes per capita after the first world war. At present, the diet is richer and more diverse, the appetite for potatoes shrinks and with it the resiliency against disruptions of the supply chain. The Northern Baltic countries, remote in relation to EU markets, are especially vulnerable, which makes the already quite popular and widely dispersed small-scale growing a perfect safety net to provide food security. But the availability of small quantities of seeds for the locally adapted varieties poses a challenge. To tackle it, the European Commission proposed new EU-wide regulations which are currently being debated and receive MainPotRe’s strong support. 


On the way to self-sufficient nutrition, MainPotRe will 

  1. Formulate policy recommendations for expanding the registration of varieties 

  2. Create a toolbox for the non-commercial use, explaining the deposition and distribution of plant material in genebanks 

  3. Refine the current marketing strategies of healthy seeds of the local variations. 

More info, lead partners and contact

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