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Viborg

Viborg is a small city of 35,000 people in central Jutland, Denmark, with 94,000 citizens in the wider municipality. The local economy is based on agriculture and food, energy and the environment, business services, public administration and manufacturing, including furniture. At a company level, it varies from traditional heavy industry—such as Grundfos, one of the world’s leading pump manufacturers—to innovative new firms in clean-tech and new media.

Viborg is a small city of 35,000 people in central Jutland, Denmark, with 94,000 citizens in the wider municipality. The local economy is based on agriculture and food, energy and the environment, business services, public administration and manufacturing, including furniture. At a company level, it varies from traditional heavy industry—such as Grundfos, one of the world’s leading pump manufacturers—to innovative new firms in clean-tech and new media.

In recent years, the area has experienced economic decline and a sharp rise in unemployment from 1.5% in 2008 to 5.6% in 2011. All sectors were affected, but especially manufacturing, trade and public services. In addition, 25% of the active population (18-65 years of age) are under some form of social scheme protection and are not actively on the job market.

Viborg is one of Denmark’s oldest cities, with Viking settlements dating back to the late 8th century. It was an important city in the early Middle Ages and the kings of Denmark were consecrated there from 1027 onwards. It is famous for Viborg Cathedral, begun in 1130. It has burnt down and been rebuilt several times, with only the crypt remaining from the original building. The associated cathedral school is Denmark’s oldest educational institution, and is over 900 years old.

In 2011, Viborg Municipality opened Denmark’s first sustainable town hall to house its 900 employees. Solar-powered, its modern architecture shaped like a white sculpture floating above a dark base.

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