• Graz

    13. Feb 2015

Facts and Figures


Graz, Austria


around 300,000 people
(2nd largest city in Austria)


127,56 km2

Educational Institutions

4 universities, 2 universities of applied sciences and 2 universities of education (approximately 61,000 students)

Capital of the federal state Styria

34 museums

City of Human Rights

Old town and the castle of Eggenberg belong to the UNESCO World Cultural Heritage

European Capital of Culture in 2003

With around 300,000 inhabitants, Graz is the second largest city of Austria and the capital of the federal state Styria. The city is situated at the river Mur and received its city coat of arms in 1245. Graz is a university town with approximately 61,000 students. It is also City of Human Rights and received the Europeprize. The old town and the castle of Eggenberg belong to the UNESCO World Heritage. In 2003, Graz was European Capital of Culture and since March 2011, it has been part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network as a City of Design. Graz builds upon a strong common will for design, which is based on a lively creative scene and internationally renowned educational and research institutions. Additionally, there are many innovative and visionary companies which recognize design as a chance and have a creative attitude. The appointment as UNESCO City of Design has been a crucial milestone for the future development of Graz. Important impulses for the economic and tourist sector are expected for the metropolitan area of the city and for the whole region of Styria. However, the title also entails a great challenge – namely the task to understand design as an attitude within an urban and sustainable culture; a culture which acknowledges intelligent design of the living environment as a pivotal value. Design is supposed to be visible and sensible in all areas of life, not only as an aesthetic factor but also as a key element which facilitates the environment and the daily life of people and makes it more worth living.

The significance and benefits of design have been increasingly acknowledged over the last decades. As an independent discipline, design acts as a pace-setter for innovation and economical developments. This has been recognized in Styria, and especially in Graz, at an early stage. Therefore, endeavours were aspired to create an ideal climate for the competitive factor design, since the vitality of the city is expressed by the joy of living and the joy for design. For this reason, a prospering local creative industry is also an indication of a functioning environment. The networking association Creative Industries Styria GmbH (CIS) has been founded as a competence center for this purpose and initiated the application to become a UNESCO City of Design. With numerous projects, such as Graz Month of Design, which presents the achievements of design to a broad audience, the CIS functions as a point of intersection for the creative industry. It expedites further development and enhances the interconnection with companies from classic economical branches. In a close co-operation with the city, the CIS strives to support and extend the local design potential as well as to push the internationalisation forward. Especially the membership in the UNESCO Creative City network offers many opportunities and chances to implement these endeavours successfully and on a long-term basis.

Discover Graz

Creative Night Graz

“WE ARE OPEN” – creatives from the UNESCO City of Design invite all interested parties to their agencies and studios. CREATIVE NIGHT GRAZ offers all…

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Creative Week Austria

CREATIVE WEEK AUSTRIA aims to showcase the dimension and diversity of the creative industries – making services from the creative sector accessible to a broad…

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Austrian Design Talks

The Austrian Design Talks at Schloss Hollenegg using best-practice examples, they show what contribution design makes to success, how the development process works and how companies…

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Clusters meet Regions

DESCRIPTION Tradition reinvented: how clusters lead resilient, innovative shifts towards a climate-neutral, digital future This is the 16th workshop of the successful series of events “Clusters…

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Design Month Festival 2024

Our world is in upheaval. Crises and uncertainties dominate. The time for lip service is over. The question is “What now!” – what to do?…

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Aspera Astra // A short film about austrian fashion design

Searching for meaning, searching for the one thing worth suffering for – will the Seeker be able to find what he’s looking for? Conquering the…

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UNESCO Creative Cities Forum_Seoul // Review

On October 26, 2023, the UNESCO Creative Cities Forum in Seoul addressed the theme “The Role of Creative Cities in Fostering Resilience, Inclusion, and Sustainable…

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Creative Week Austria

The CREATIVE WEEK AUSTRIA aims to highlight the dimension and diversity of the creative industries – to make services and services of the creative sector…

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Creative Night Graz

Various studios and agencies took part in the event, introducing themselves and their companies, sharing details about their work, and addressing the queries of the…

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