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Surfing Europe closing event takes place in Donostia-San Sebastián


On 18 November, Donostia-San Sebastián hosted the closing event of Surfing Europe, an 18-month European project for the promotion of surfing and the search for market opportunities for surfing schools, clubs, tour operators, travel agents, accommodations and other actors.


All the activities were part of the closing event of the Surfing Europe project, co-funded by the EU’s programme for SMEs, COSME, and led by Fomento de San Sebastián, with such partners as Itxaslehor S.L. (Spain), Nere Ariztoy (Spain), the Town of Viana do Castelo (Portugal), Nautisme en Bretagne (France), the Town of Ribamontán al Mar (Spain), Surfing GB (UK) and Discover Bundoran (Ireland). The partners’ representatives came to San Sebastián to attend the Surfing and Innovation workshop, as well as a series of business meetings, with the aim of gaining first-hand knowledge of the local surf industry and its support in the public sector. Since the partners are carrying out surf development projects in their cities of origin, contact with them will continue in the future.


On day 1, participants went on a city tour, visiting Zurriola beach and watching Piedra, papel, arena, a documentary by Gabriel García about the transformation of Gros beach in San Sebastián in the mid-1990s and its relevance to the development of the surf industry as an economic driving force in the city. They were also able to try local cuisine in a traditional gastronomy club.


On day 2, the partners met at Talent House for a final update on project management and development. Afterwards, they visited two surf schools: Pukas & Hurley (the first advanced centre for Hurley Surf Club members in Spain) and Groseko Indarra (a beachfront surf school and event planner)..


On the last day, they attended ‘Surfing and Innovation’, a workshop at the Miramar Palace gathering more than 50 surfing professionals and businesses, and a meeting point where trade members were able to share ideas, projects and working areas, exploring innovation as applied to surfing and board sports at large. The workshop’s speakers were:

Vincent Dutot. Paris School of Business. Chaire D3 (Digital, Data, Design). Social Media Awards Organising Committee. A connoisseur of the surf industry, Mr Dutot talked about digitisation and social media, his starting point being the question, ‘Can we still control our actions?’

Eduardo Cenzano. Trinity Board Technologies. Based on his 15 years’ experience in the management of e-innovation projects, Mr Cenzano discussed crowdfunding as online marketing innovation.

Kevin Cook. Museum of British Surfing. Mr Cook talked about the origins of surfing in Europe. His presentation was titled ‘Preserving and Promoting Our European Surfing Heritage’.

Márcio Borgonovo dos Santos. All in Surf (start-up to develop a unique tool gathering multiple water navigation sensors). Mr Borgonovo shared the results of a PhD project in a talk titled, ‘From Research to Market: A Long Voyage’.

Iker Aguirre. NSI Agency. French national research group on new management methods and business management. An expert in international surfing markets, Mr Aguirre focused on the trend back to humanising relationships in the aftermath of the digital transformation.


The workshop brought the event to a close. Given the partners’ interest and other cities’ eagerness to join in, it is highly likely that Surfing Europe will be continued. The surf companies and related service providers already participating in the European project amount to 160.


More info about Surfing Europe at:


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