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Are you a small city with big ideas?

Edited on

04 July 2019

What specific support do small cities need in Europe? Does their size confer on them particular challenges to deal with? What about the advantages of being a smaller city?

URBACT is launching the first phase of a new knowledge building project ‘Vitality of small cities’ to try and pin down some of these issues.

This will build on the work produced at the ‘Vitality of Smaller Cities’ international conference in Barcelona, October 2018, which gathered 150 urban policymakers and small city players.

Recommendations from that conference clearly showed that:

  • small cities have their own dynamics within local contexts which influence their vitality
  • small cities can be more agile to innovate
  • they are often more vulnerable to global or national events
  • they have an advantage and opportunity to connect with their citizens

Context is everything, so the first phase of this work will look at mapping out the different typologies of small cities, within their territorial context: what role and function do they have?

We will also be exploring the existing national support mechanisms for smaller cities that already exist. The challenges and opportunities of small and medium sized urban areas are identified as a cross-cutting topic of the Pact of Amsterdam but it is perceived that most EU programmes do not differentiate between larger and smaller cities in their support frameworks.

Ultimately, we will be reaching out to small cities from URBACT and beyond, to get your input about what specific issues you face, and understand the support you need to maintain or boost the vitality of your cities.

Depending on the results of the first phase mapping, URBACT’s monitoring committee will decide in December if we proceed to phase 2.

Are you a small city with big ideas? Would you be interested in contributing to this work? Stay tuned to for more details!