In recent years, local businesses and event organisers across Oslo highlighted the fact that the city lacked a cohesive strategy for events or a point of contact within the municipality. In response, the City has created its first ever events strategy, which was presented to the City Council in mid-2018.
The strategy aims to increase the attractiveness of Oslo as an event destination by facilitating a wide variety of events in and around the city – which will include large scale concerts and sport events among others. A proposed new City of Oslo event unit, which will guide and support event organisers, is central to this plan. As well as streamlining the processes and offering a single point of contact for event organisers, the unit will be a new hub of expertise within the City government able to work across its own departments and agencies. Having a single hub of knowledge is also aimed at improving event safety.
The City will also implement measures, which may include financial support, to encourage ‘green events’. This policy will be backed up by an assessment of how green infrastructure can be introduced into public space, such as access to electricity, recycling points and bike racks. The work on the strategy has been led by the Department for Culture and Sports in collaboration with several other City departments and agencies.
The City government recognises that both the organisers and the events are important in developing the city, to create a sense of place and belonging and to add to the cultural profile of Oslo. It hopes that these measures will make Oslo a more event-friendly city and a more attractive place to host local, regional and international events. The events themselves can then become a tool for city development and contribute to other strategies such as the Car Free City Life initiative as well as the development of creative industries.