Eurocon, or formally European Science Fiction Convention, is a traveling convention organized under the auspices of the European Science Fiction Society, where the European SF Awards are voted and presented. It has increasingly tried to emulate the Worldcon and the WSFS, with site selection two years in advance but by "National Delegates". During the Cold War, much effort was given to alternate both sides of the Iron Curtain; this was maintained during the Eurocon heyday ca. 1990–2010, simply due to purchasing power. A traditional part of the opening and closing ceremonies is displaying the original ESFS flag and then passing it to next year's organisers.
The first Eurocon was held in Trieste, Italy, in 1972, and further ones followed biannually, leaping odd years until 1983 and 1987, becoming annual ever since (except 1998). To complicate the fanhistory, at the 1980 Eurocon 5 (or V – roman numerals were more official back then) it was decided to include retroactively in the counting the First International SF Convention in Zurich, Switzerland, in August 1959 (not to be mistaken for the alternate title of the 1951 London Festivention!), so the 1982 follow-up became "Eurocon 7", skipping 6 and bringing much bad luck (after THREE standalone bids/committees folded or backed out, main events were moved to a sercon German con at several weeks' notice). This caused some confusion in the 1980s (not to mention the 2010s Wikipedians, counting backwards without bothering to read the period newszines); however, around 1984 such a form of serial numbers was largely well-lost to "Eurocon YEAR", or other event name.
(To confuse the matters even more, "EUROCON" – usually capitalised – is also the European convention of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, started in 1971. They own many domains in the form of eurocon20XX.com.)
The ESFS Statutes also allow "organising", or rather bestowing a title of "European Science Fiction Conference (Euroconference)", apparently to provide some recognition as well as stimulus to other events with international programming beside the year's single Eurocon, or to offset the travel/financial difficulties it might pose for a part of potential constituency (compare US zoning and NASFiC, but unlike it, clashing terms are prohibited); however this has been used only exceptionally.
- Official website.
- Wikipedia entry. – full of errors
- A Decade of Eurocons 1995–2005 by Jonathan Cowie at Concatenation
- CounterClock 39 (2021) has an imperfect overview ("THE 50 YEAR HISTORY of the EUROCON: The 1970's and 1980's", partially sourced from Eurosmof Facebook group
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