Chief Strategist

Frank Cuypers


Frank is a thought leader in place thinking. For eight years prior to co-founding Place Generation earlier this year, he was associated with the Canadian company, Destination Think. He co-wrote the famous “End of Tourism As We Know It” city marketing strategy of Wonderful Copenhagen and wrote the European Commission’s tourism marketing strategy in 2016. In the United States, Frank worked in many places and states. He was at the forefront of Destination Think, leading the transformation of Travel Oregon. This involved overseeing both the internal assessment and change management aspects as writing the state’s transformative tourism plan. He is a sought-after speaker and has shared keynotes on five continents in more than 80 places.

Frank’s extensive career includes five years as a trusted advisor in urban policy for the Belgian city of Antwerp. The role encompassed city marketing, cultural policy and tourism approaches. Before that he worked as a change management consultant for the French company Möbius. He led and transformed the international department of Visit Flanders, the DMO for the Flemish region of Belgium, where he co-wrote their overall strategy as well as their marketing strategy.

In 2020, Frank won the Place Brand of the Year award from the City Nation Place global congress in London for his rebrand of Auckland, New Zealand. He also has advised and worked intensively in and with the cities of Calgary, Montréal, Vancouver, Stratford (Ontario), Ottawa, Cleveland, Toronto, Kelowna, New Orleans, Aspen, Grand Junction, Seoul, Shanghai, Kristiansand, Gold Coast, Melbourne, Sydney, Den Haag, Amsterdam, Munich, Prague, Queenstown, Tauranga, Tallinn, Turku and Newcastle, but also state DMO’s like British Columbia, Saskatchewan, Queensland, Montana, Colorado, Oregon, West Australia. He has advised the Bay of Plenty, Elkhart County, provinces of Limburg and Gelderland, and the nations of Slovenia, Fiji, England, Japan, Estonia, Montenegro, Czech Republic, South Africa, Singapore, Zambia, The Netherlands and Malawi on modern destination development approaches.

Frank is acting as a strategic planning advisor for the World Bank in Malawi and works as a marketing advisor for the Flemish NGO Exchange. He is a visiting Professor at the University of Antwerp, lecturer at Charlemagne Institute Antwerp, Columbia University (NYC) and MCI (Innsbruck). With his students he started the research project Why Your City?, which was a worldwide project around place identity.