CittaSlow was founded in Italy in 1999. In the same year, a meeting was held in Greve, Italy, and 54 point charter was developed to evaluate the organization's future members. The main purpose of the CittaSlow is to protect high-quality local food and the local culture from globalization. In 2001, only 28 cities in Italy were members of the club. However, this number reached up to 14 countries with members of the CittaSlow organization and national CittaSlow networks in Germany, the UK, and Norway. The first North American city to be nominated to the club was in Canada, a small seaside village named Cowichan Bay. Today, CittaSlow has 264 members in 30 countries. Turkey has 14 members in the organization, making her the 3rd biggest country in the club.
There are three categories of membership. A town can be a CittaSlow town, CittaSlow supporter, or CittaSlow friend, which technically stands for an individual or a family living in that city. CittaSlow is a membership organization, and towns should have populations less than fifty thousand. Besides, cities should score a minimum %50 of the CittaSlow goals, which is self-assessed by the cities. The national network confirms membership. The main aims of the network are;
- Making life better for everyone living in an urban environment
- Improving the quality of life in the cities
- Resisting the homogenization and globalization of towns around the globe
- Protecting the environment
- Promoting cultural diversity and uniqueness of individual cities
- Providing inspiration for a healthier lifestyle
The first city to join the club was Seferihisar in Turkey, which became a member in 2010. 13 more cities became members since then. Here are the cities that are members of the CittaSlow organization.
For the first time globally, a Turkish College has put Slowness courses to its 2019-2020 curriculum. The course will be given for the first time in the world by the Members of the Cittaslow Scientific Committee in Turkey. Atasehir Adiguzel Vocational School has Human Rights, Animal Rights, and 21st Century Skills courses compulsory in its curriculum to raise awareness among its students. Slowness was added as a compulsory course to the curriculum of 2019-2020 and will be held two hours a week in all programs. The coursebook of the program was created by the Members of the Cittaslow Scientific Committee in Turkey and CittaSlow international which includes ten chapters such as; Slow Philosophy, Slow Life, Slow Science, Slow Food, Cittaslow, Cittaslow Tourism, Slow Economy, Slow Travel, Slow Agriculture and Slow Tourism. The course founder is a member of the CittaSlow Scientific Committee in Turkey, who is also the Adiguzel Vocational School director. He stated that he was inspired by Harry Lewis, who is a Harvard Undergraduate School Dean. Like him, we also try to encourage our children to make the best of their time rather than a rush this Global World is forcing us. We did our best to create itineraries for our clients in 2019 to get the best of our county's touristic destinationsand hope to host more people from across the globe to explore Turkey at a slow pace.