A City of Literature bid is not a popularity contest and
Krakow did not sentence Dunedin to failure, a spokeswoman for
the Polish city said.
Krakow City of Literature international projects manager
Justyna Jochym said the decision not to issue an endorsement
letter to support a Dunedin bid to become a City of
Literature was made by a board including City of Krakow Mayor
Mrs Jochym said it would have been ''imprudent'' for Krakow
to support all the more than 15 cities that applied.
Krakow considered ''mutual communication and understanding a
highly significant factor'' for the sustainable development
of the Cities of Literature network.
''This was a huge motivating factor in our decision-making
Krakow considers it the responsibility of the applicant
cities to outline the links of joint literary interests.
Krakow issued six endorsement letters, she said.
Applicant cities needed five letters of endorsement to file
an application to Unesco, she said.
''Popularity would not earn a city the title. Krakow did not
sentence Dunedin to failure.''
Krakow prepared its single bid for three years, she said.
Dunedin City Council arts and culture group manager Bernie
Hawke said the bid application included Dunedin's ability to
interact with all the network, not just one city.
''Our application wasn't to Krakow, it was to Unesco.''
Krakow supported the Dunedin bid but decided not to issue an
endorsement letter, he said.
The other six Cities of Literature - Edinburgh, Melbourne,
Iowa City, Dublin, Reykjavik and Norwich, - were
''delighted'' to endorse Dunedin's bid, he said.
Polish Heritage of Otago and Southland Charitable Trust
chairwoman Cecylia Klobukowska said she had ''concerns'' with
Krakow not providing a letter of support.
The two cities had several links and the Dunedin City Council
had been ''wonderful'' supporting the Dunedin Polish
community, she said.
Examples included Dunedin hosting an exhibition on Polish
writer Joseph Conrad Korzeniowski in 2008.
Another was an unveiling of a commemorative plaque for
Korzeniowski at Toitu Otago Settlers Museum in June.
Last year, the trust organised a book launch of Alone
by Alina Suchanski and in November would launch a book
commemorating the 70th anniversary of the arrival 733 Polish
war orphans to New Zealand from Siberia in 1944.
A book of poetry by Polish Nobel Prize winner Czeslaw Milosz
had a Maori translation, she said.
Krakow should have supported the bid, she said.
''I strongly believe that Dunedin deserves 'yes' from
The bid results will be announced on November 30.