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Hamburg conference 2012
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The 24th European Meeting of Cultural Journals

Conference The 24th European Meeting of Cultural Journals will take place in Hamburg from 14 to 16 September 2012. This year's meeting is organized by the European network of cultural journals, Eurozine, in cooperation with the Hamburg Institute for Social Research and the journal Mittelweg 36. More than 100 editors and intellectuals from Europe's leading cultural journals will participate in the event.


Thematic outline

Arrivals/Departures: European harbour cities as places of migration

conference topic Under the heading "Arrivals/Departures. European harbour cities as places of migration", the conference will explore the question of how European societies deal variously with the cultural legacy of the "harbour city".

Harbour cities as places of movement, immigration and emigration, as places of inclusion and exclusion, develop various distinct modes of being that not only reflect different cultural traditions and political and social self-conceptions, but also contain economic potential and communicate how they see themselves as part of the structure that is "Europe". Gateways to the world or fortress Europe? Attached to harbour cities are all sorts of often contradictory metaphors that appear both to encourage movement and to restrict it. Local, national and global processes impose their mark on the development and self-understanding of this particular urban space.

Rightly associated with informality, cosmopolitanism and adventure, European harbour cities also bear the traces of a darker past: of colonialism, slavery and penal regimes. Securitized and militarized during the Cold War, in the twenty-first century harbours have been all but divested of human labour. Communities formerly dependent on the old port economy have disappeared to be replaced by a tertiary sector seeking the prestige and space of waterside locations. At the same time, harbours and their environs remain peripheral zones attracting migrants and others seeking out the shadows of surveillance society.

Documents Thematic outline and provisional programme




harbour city With its history as commercial and maritime power and strong civic identity, Hamburg – or, officially, the Free and Hanseatic City of Hamburg – is the ideal location for a conference on harbour cities in the twenty-first century. Germany's second largest city (pop. 1.8 million), Hamburg is also renowned as a media centre and for its museums and university.

The conference will be taking place at the Hafen City, a newly redeveloped quarter located on the island on the Elbe formerly called Kehrwieder and Wandrahm. Covering an area of 157 hectares, it is one of the most ambitious inner-city waterfront development projects worldwide.


Conference venue

venue The conference will take place at the residency of the Körber Foundation, also located in the Hafen City.

The Körber Foundation is a forum for policy formation in international politics and promoter of scientific, artistic and social innovation. It is named after Kurt Adolf Körber (1909-1992), industrialist and founder of Hauni Maschinenbau AG.


Kehrwieder 12
20457 Hamburg



HafenCity and Elbphilharmonie

The conference programme includes two parallel excursions on the morning of Saturday 15 September.

HafenCity Hamburg's HafenCity (157 hectares) is one of the biggest waterfront development projects in Europe. Between the historical warehouse district and the river Elbe, a new city district is emerging with an urban mix of housing, commercial uses, culture, leisure and tourism. Construction work on the district will continue until around 2025. Managing the development is HafenCity Hamburg GmbH, a company fully owned by the City of Hamburg.

The tour will start in the Kesselhaus, the info-centre of the HafenCity. Following an introduction to HafenCity based on a scale-model, including an explanation of the involvement of various actors and architects, we will be guided through the development. Initiatives critical of the HafenCity project will also be taking part in the tour.

Elbphilharmonie The Elbphilharmonie is a concert hall that has been under construction in the HafenCity since 2007. Designed by the Swiss architects Herzog & de Meuron, the complex consists of three concert halls, a backstage area, a hotel, restaurant area, 47 private flats and a public plaza at a level of 37 metres.

The Elbphilharmonie is promoted by HafenCity Hamburg GmbH as a central cultural institution and trademark of the HafenCity. Because of its spiralling costs, which are borne by the City of Hamburg, the Elbphilharmonie has been the subject of fierce controversy. We will be taken on a guided tour through the construction site, receiving a report on its development as well as the debates surrounding it.



How to get there Although Hamburg is easily accessible both via air and rail, it is advisable to book tickets well in advance.


Hamburg airport

Airport bus

Shuttle Services

Airport taxi


Hamburg has four railway stations: Hauptbahnhof (centre), Dammtor (centre), Altona (west) and Harburg (south). The two central stations are the closest to the hotels and conference venue.

Booking via Deutsche Bahn


In Hamburg

How to get to the hotel and the conference venue The conference venue Körber-Stiftung as well as the hotels Stella Maris and 25Hours HafenCity are located directly at the harbour. We have compiled information on how to get to the hotel and the conference venue.

Download Directions from the airport and from the main railway station (Hauptbahnhof).


The S-Bahn (suburban rail network) line S1 operates every 10 minutes between Hamburg Airport and Hamburg's central railway station, Hauptbahnhof, a journey of 25 minutes. The Hamburg Airport (Flughafen) S-Bahn station is directly in front of the terminals.

Hamburg public transport

Map of Hamburg



We will be staying in two different hotels, located in the harbour:

25hours-hotel hamburg

Stella Maris



Visa requirements EU nationals do not require a visa to enter the Federal Republic of Germany. Visitors from many other countries can stay up to 90 days in Germany without a visa. For more detailed information please consult the website of the German Federal Foreign Office. Please don't hesitate to contact the Eurozine office if you require assistance.






Supported by

Hamburger Institut für Sozialforschschung


Hamburg Tourismus

Hamburg I Ministry of Culture

Hamburger Kunsthalle


This project has been funded with support from the European Commission. The project reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.


Past Conferences

Changing media
23rd European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Linz, 13-16 May 2011

The 23rd European Meeting of Cultural Journals took place in Linz, Austria, in May 2011. Under the heading "Changing media, Media in change", the conference explored the challenges and transformations facing media in the wake of the digital revolution. Read more here. [ more ]

European histories
22nd European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Vilnius, 8-11 May 2009

The 22nd European Meeting of Cultural Journals was a resounding success, with over eighty representatives of cultural journals from Iceland to Bosnia, Ireland to Belarus meeting in Vilnius to discuss the subject of "European Histories". Read more here. [ more ]

crosswords X mots croisés
21st European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Paris, 26-29 September 2008

The 21st European Meeting of Cultural Journals 2008 in Paris explored the theme of multilingualism in Europe in terms of language policies, migration, translation and the European public sphere. Read the conference texts here. [ more ]

Changing places (What's normal anyway?)
The 20th European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Sibiu, 21-24 October 2007

Under the heading "Changing places (What's normal anyway?)", the Eurozine network conference 2007 in Sibiu, Romania, addressed the challenges facing societies, literature, and the media as the need for change meets the urge for normality. Read the conference texts here. [ more ]

Friend and foe. Shared space, divided society
The 19th European Meeting of Cultural Journals
London, 27-30 October 2006

Speakers at the 19th European Meeting of Cultural Journals opened up the discussion on cultural diversity in two directions: first, as it is experienced in the physical urban space, and second, as it is reflected in the mirror of the media. [ more ]

The 18th European Meeting of Cultural Journals
Istanbul, 4-7 November 2005

Contributions on the notion of neighbourhood and the Turkey-Europe question from a range of intellectual and geographic perspectives. [ more ]


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