• Localising the 2030 Agenda

    Localising the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) is an ever-evolving practice. Following the unanimously adoption of the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda, for the first time ever, sustainable cities and communities were singled out as distinct objectives in a multi-lateral agreement. An important milestone, acknowledging the central role of cities in the achievement of the SDGs. According to the OECD, it has been estimated that over 65% of the Sustainable Development Goals' targets need the active involvement of local and regional governments. Today, an increasing number of regions, cities and municipalities have started to use its 17 objectives and 169 indicators as a holistic framework to shape and improve their local strategies, translating these global goals into their local contexts.


    The lessons and tools to localise Sustainable Development Goals are drawn from the URBACT Global Goals for Cities pilot (2021 - 2022), the largest European network of cities to ever tackle the challenges from the Agenda 2030.


    Global Goal for Cities logo

    “The Sustainable Development Goals
    provide one of the best frameworks yet
    to achieve holistic and integrated
    sustainable urban development”.

    From the Global Goals for Cities joint statement
    that was signed by 19 cities.





    Using the global goals at local level involves designing actions that contribute to the individual objectives, while monitoring progress accordingly. Used as a policy-making tool, the SDGs can help cities to develop better and more coherent policies and plans for an integrated urban development. Very much in line with URBACT, the SDGs offer a common language for working across policy silos and with different local stakeholders, often strengthening the social dimension of sustainability work and gaining a strong momentum.

    Making the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) a reality in EU cities

    The URBACT Knowledge Hub brings together the latest urban trends, so good practices are within everyone's reach. Back in 2015, the urban perspective was officially placed at the heart of the global 2030 Agenda, a major change in comparison to the original UN Millennium Development Goals (2000 - 2015). Throughout the last years, also known as the "decade of change", the importance of cities was acknowledged beyond the spectrum of a single goal and they have an important role to play in all objectives. URBACT supports cities by providing concrete tools and methodologies for localising the global goals within an integrated action-planing process.

    • Participatory governance
    • Social cohesion
    • Local economy
    • Climate action
    Transnational meeting from the Global Goals for Cities Network



    Process & Tools

    Planning integrated urban actions and localising Sustainable Development Goals go hand-in-hand. Combined with the URBACT Method, this equation has the potential to create long-term impact.



    About the 2030 Agenda

    Made by the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, the United Nations Agenda 2030 has corresponding targets and indicators which are directly or indirectly related to the daily work of local and regional governments and local stakeholders -- with a specific objective dedicated to urban matters, the SDG 11. The 2030 Agenda must not lose momentum at this crucial stage of implementatio, now is the time to speed up the delivery of all of these global goals. To be impactful, localisation needs to be anchored on the principles of integration, multi-stakeholder participation, inclusive partnership and multi-level governance and build on adequate data and financing resources at the local level, but not only.


    The achivements and findings from the Global Goals for Cities pilot network also relied on URBACT tools, external partnerships and methodological support from the Council of European Municipalities and Regions (CEMR) -- more especifically the use of the Reference Framework for Sustainable Cities (RFSC) tool -- and the expertise from the Joint Research Centre's (JRC) on locqlising SDGs.

  • Mobility

    The Walk'n'Roll lessons were drawn from the following Action Planning Networks (2019 - 2022):


    URBACT RiConnect logoURBACT Space4People logoURBACT Thriving Streets logo





    The URBACT Knowledge Hub brings together good practices from across the EU, with the latest urban trends, to fill the gaps and make sure that the learning is within everyone's reach. Despite of their size and number of inhabitants, cities have often been designed to make room for cars. Three URBACT Networks have reflected on how we can shift the mobility paradigm in Europe to create more inclusive spaces. Together under the Walk'n'Roll initiative, 28 cities -- from towns to metropolises -- have explored common visions and practical interventions through different workshops, events and a series of guidance. Take a ride with us and discover why streets belong to people!

    • Climate action
    • Urban planning
    • Social cohesion
    • Public space
    Taking the necessary steps towards Walk'n'Roll

    Latest stories

    Is the compact city model endangered?

    The recent pandemic was an important episode in the history of urban development. Much can be learnt from the immediate reactions to the health crisis, especially in dense cities. There were many brilliant examples about innovative tactical interventions in public space, inclusive housing policies, new types of economic support and social protection mechanisms, from which we can take stock.

    Is the compact city model endangered? Article COVER

    URBACT Walk'n'Roll Guidebook

    Guidance for cities of all sizes


    URBACT Walk'n'Roll who is it for?

    Check out all booklets


    Intro and challenges
    Visions and interventions
    This booklet delves into the mobility challenges and the roots of the problems. To face adversities, readers are invited to consider new ways of thinking urban planning. The second booklet showcases principles and visions that can lead the way forward. Specific interventions are also described,so cities can adapt them to their needs. The final booklet looks at how cities can make change happen in the long run. It introduces methodological and policy recommendations, alongside interviews from the Action Planning Networks' cities.
    Booklet 1 CTA Booklet 2 CTA


    Booklet 3 CTA


  • Resourceful Cities

    LEAD PARTNER : The Hague - Netherlands
    • Mechelen - Belgium
    • Patras - Greece
    • Ciudad Real - Spain
    • Zagreb - Croatia
    • Oslo - Norway
    • Vila Nova de Famalicao - Portugal
    • Bucharest 3rd district - Romania
    • Cáceres - Spain
    • Opole - Poland


    • Phase 1: Kick-Off Meeting 1, The Hague 3-4 Oct 2019


    • Phase 1: Kick-Off Meeting 2, Mechelen 12-14 Feb 2020
    • Phase 2: Kick-Off Transnational meeting 1, online 7-8 Jul 2020
    • Phase 2: City-to-City Session *Scoping the eco system* 9 Sep 2020
    • URBACT e-University 15 Sep - 8 Oct 2020
    • Transnational meeting 2 *Stimulating Collaboration* 25-26 Nov 2020
    • City-to-City Session *Scaling up local circular economy* 14 Dec 2020
    • Transnational meeting 3 *The role of the city* 27-28 Jan 2021
    • City-to-City Session *Circular Economy and territorial food systems* 18 Feb 2021
    • Transnational meeting 4 *Education, Awareness & Engagement* 30-31 March 2021
    • Transnational meeting 5 *Funding, Monitoring & Risk Assessment * 29-30 June 2021

    RESOURCEFUL CITIES is an URBACT Action Planning Network of ten European cities. This project seeks to develop the next generation of urban resource centres, so they can serve as catalysts of the local circular economy, by adopting a participative and integrated approach. The resource centres strive to promote the positive economic, environmental and social impacts, notably for the circular economy. Thus, the network facilitates waste prevention, reuse, repair and recycling. The centres also work as connection points for citizens, new businesses, researchers and the public sector to co-create new ways to close resource loops at the local level. By bringing together interested actors to work alongside, the goal is to promote the change of values and mindset.

    Spaces for circular co-creation & action
  • Enriching the urban jungle with bees


    Connecting sites for bees freedom

    Natalia Majewska
    Department of Integrated Development and Environment
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    350 000


    Bees are rich in terms of biodiversity protection, education development and touristic attraction. Transferring the practice of Lubljana, Bydgoszcz develop its own approach of connecting sites in the city that are bee-friendly and where apiaries can be visited. This is also included in a wider campaign for bee awareness and protection.

    Solutions offered by the good practice

    Bydgoszcz is the eighth largest city in Poland, part of the Bydgoszcz–Toruń metropolitan area, set on the on the Brda and Vistula rivers in northern Poland. It is an increasingly important economic centre, but the city is well known for its water, Art Nouveau buildings, and urban greenery – including the largest city park in Poland (830 ha).

    The city has a dynamic approach to sustainable development as part of its efforts to improve the quality of life of the city’s inhabitants. Against this background, Bydgoszcz wanted to link its agricultural land and green spaces with ecological education and took a particular interest in Ljubljana’s approach to connecting sites in the city that are bee-friendly and where apiaries can be visited.

    The City started to test and promote the quality of Bydgoszcz honey and used World Bee Day to implement a campaign on the ‘Urban reality of bees and people - let’s create a more bee-friendly world’, including photos at bus and tram stops, and messages on billboards. A local biologist produced a brochure on proper human behaviour towards bees and an exhibition.

    But for ULG Coordinator, Justyna Olszewska, a highlight was local teachers getting enthusiastic about teaching children about bees. They developed a new educational programme called “With Bees Throughout the Year”, which gives children the opportunity to get to know about bees, beekeeping and related topics around health, plants and nature.

    Sustainable and integrated urban approach

    The approach undertaken by Bydgoszcz is fully aligned with the integrated approach of the Practice of Ljubljana that it transferred. Ecological practices related to beekeeping have been developed. The new EU project “Bez Lipy” introduces participatory approach to greenery development and a member of URBACT local group participates in the works.

    The practice is also focusing on children and their education and attitude towards bees. This has also meant the development of professional skills and capacity to raise their awareness and develop bee-related activities as well as the enlargement of the network of urban beekeepers in the city. The city also promotes new (touristic) products and services related to beekeeping such as educational workshops run by Dawid Kilon, a biologist, guide and draftsman and bee-keeping workshops run at WSG University of Economy in Bydgoszcz.

    Participatory approach

    Bydgoszcz municipality formed an URBACT Local Group (ULG) mixing around 30 members - beekeepers, teachers, entrepreneurs, researchers, local tour guides and interested individuals. The group identified 16 places in the city with apiaries and melliferous potential to appear on their own Bee Path map of 16 stops – from a roof on the university, through Shopping Mall with beehives, pollinator houses in city parks, sensory garden at school, Bydgoszcz Soap Works to the botanical garden.

    What difference has it made

    In 2018 the City of Bydgoszcz lifted the ban on beekeeping in the city centre. Within the project we have managed to get to know beekeepers and educators who are ready to share their knowledge – in the very 2021 there are new beehives in the city centre: in May an apiary was installed by Mateusz Andryszak in Ostromecko Park and Palace Ensemble, and in June another one was installed in the Biziel University Hospital (Mateusz guided the endeavour). There are more and more bees initiatives application within the city grants and Bydgoszcz Citizens’ Participatory Budget, e.g. in 2022 there will be a municipal beehive installed and a bee-themed playground. Bydgoszcz is also starting the promotion of the Bee Education Programme in schools and we celebrate World Bee Day by installing the exhibition on bees that is accessible and offered to download and use as an open source and to be installed in any other city that wishes to educate about bees.

    Transferring the practice

    Visiting Ljubljana in April 2019 - together with stakeholders of BeePathNet’s other partner cities - members of Bydgoszcz’s ULG were truly inspired by how they too could create their own story around bees, linking to history, architecture and natural values.

    The city hopes to install the popular bee educational programme across the whole education sector, from kindergarten up. There are also plans that Ania Izdebska with the local Tourist Office will create a ‘Bee Quest Game’ that will complement the town’s existing game for visitors.

    Finally, the city also plans to explore further business opportunities and promotion, to take advantage of the growing interest in the project - including in other towns in the region.

    Main Theme
    Is a transfer practice
  • Food and urban agriculture




    What's on the menu?







    Food for thought


    The URBACT Knowledge Hub brings together good practices from across the EU, with the latest urban trends, to fill the gaps and make sure that the learning is within everyone's reach. Since 2013, URBACT has supported eight networks working on topics linked to sustainable food and urban agriculture and pulled together their insights to help cities take action - some good food for thought!



    • Climate action
    Urban agriculture (IStock)

    Food for thought - URBACT Knowledge Hub

    See all the key ingredients

    Food systems activities produce greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change. They are a primary cause of environmental degradation and significantly contribute to socio-economic and health inequalities. Only a food systems approach can identify effective actions to accelerate climate impacts and reduce inequalities.


    Since 2013, URBACT has supported 11 networks to learn from each other on the topics of sustainable food and urban agriculture :


    Thanks to URBACT, more than 60 cities have led the transition towards more sustainable local food ecosystems. URBACT is pulling together the insights from these cities and beyond to help cities take action.

    Check out URBACT's recipe

    Below you can find out how cities are making the most with each ingredient, so better, more sustainable and organic cities can thrive.

    1. Policy-making

    Food policy meeting
    Why food policy is more important than ever?



    Food systems encompass the entire range of stakeholders and their interlinked activities from food production to distribution and consumption via transformation. These actors range from private to public, NGOs, as well as citizens, focusing on the types of food items, their quality, their integration into daily lives


    2. Food production

    Food production in Mouans Sartoux (FR)
    How to ensure local and sustainable food production?


    In order to support the transition to more sustainable local food ecosystems, many cities have sought to modify the way they produce their food - for example, by making it more local and reducing direct transport, by introducing new planning measures and land-use rules, transitioning to organic production, or diversifying their local food production (fruits, vegetables, meat, bee products). Food sovereignty is a key concept for many cities and reflexions upon the Commons has also been initiated. 


    3. Food distribution

    Food distribution in Vaslui (RO)
    How does your food get into your plate?


    The way food is distributed in a city reflects largely its relation to the food ecosystem. Cities can improve access to (sustainable) food to all its citizens by diversifying its selling points developing retail entities, markets, cooperatives and other forms of food provision. Short food supply chains can also be a way to empower actors and make territories (more) resilient.




    4. Jobs and skills

    Food jobs - Canteen ladies in Pays de Condruses (BE)
    How can cities promote educational and professional pathways and develop skills while developing sustainable food ecosystems?


    Focusing on food systems is both an end and a means to address jobs accessibility and skills development. Cities can use food to boost employability of job seekers and support the most disadvantaged people to develop new skills while socialising. They can support the development of business and entrepreneurial initiatives through business incubators and test farms.



    5. Food transformation

    Food transformation- Rosignano Marittimo (IT)
    From the raw products to the dishes in your plate, how to ensure a healthy and good quality food?


    In the conventional sector, food transformation is a key moment in the supply chain where food items are strongly modified with potentially negative effects on health, as well as on the environment. Cities can take action to ensure that the quality of the food is preserved - for example, by ensuring that products are both organic and local in school canteens meals.  Transformation can take place with the aim to sell and make profit in the private sector, or to be delivered and eaten in school canteens, to teach and raise awareness in NGOs, or to be preserved at home.


    6. Community-building

    Food community in Brussels (BE)
    How to raise awareness about sustainable food and use it to engage?


    Food has always been a binding ingredient for local communities. URBACT cities have developed specific approaches to engage with citizens, and more particularly with children in schools. Community engagement is an underlying component of many municipal programmes focusing on changing food behaviours through education and transitioning towards more sustainable food consumption.


    7. Solidarity

    Food solidarity
    How to make sure everyone gets access to (quality) food?


    The Covid-19 pandemic has made increasingly obvious the need to ensure that nobody is left behind when considering one of our core primary needs, food. Access to good, organic and local food shouldn't be a privilege for a selected few. Cities can take action to ensure that everybody gets access to the best available food – best for them, for the environment and for (local) economy – but also promoting healthy food as a key common good for all.

    8. Marketing and branding

    Food branding - honey from Portugal
    How to promote your city via its gastronomy and food products?


    Food has always been a key item not only to bring people together, but also to attract them. As such, many cities are using it as a token for touristic development, branding and marketing. Some have developed gastronomic strategies - with the creation of brands or producers’ clubs, or taking part in european competitions, others develop their own labels, or specific touristic paths.

    9. Education and awareness-raising

    Food education in Mouans Sartoux (FR)
    How to raise awareness and educate on food?


    Cities can play a role in raising awareness and educating citizens on good quality and healthy food - for example, by running activities for different types of publics and creating time and spaces for all to engage in these activities.

    10. Circular food systems

    Circular food systems
    How to transition towards a more circular and sustainable food system?


    Local food ecosystems are holistic approaches to address food from its production to its delivery and consumption via its transformation. A key remaining element, to ensure closing the loop, is to adopt a circular approach, notably in addressing foodwaste, seeking to reduce it at individual collective and private sector levels. The benefits can then not only be environmental but also economic.

    11. Bees and wild pollinators

    Bees and wild pollinators
    What bees have to do with cities?


    Bees and wild pollinators are natural biodiversity indicators in the urban jungle. Far beyond the sweet honey, bees can bring benefits related to education, jobs, skills, tourism and gatronomy. They can also create and strengthen exisitng communities. See how bee-friendly cities are paving the way towards change and join the movement!


    Viladecans - Spain
    • Trikala - Greece
    • Seraing - Belgium
    • Nagykanizsa - Hungary



    Political Meeting (20/04/2021)


    Kick-off Meeting - TM1 (05/05/2021)


    Transnational Meeting 2 - Seraing (06/07/2021 & 08/07/2021)


    Transnational Meeting 3 - Nagykanizsa (16/11/2021 - 18/11/2021) 




    Transnational Meeting 4 - Trikala (02/03/2022 - 03/03/2022)


    Deep Dive visit to Viladecans (05/07/2022 - 06/07/2022)


    Final Event in Viladecans (18/10/2022 - 19/10/2022) 

    • Vilawatt UTM celebrates the Final Event

      On 18 and 19 October, Viladecans hosted the final event of the Vilawatt-UTM (URBACT Transfer Mechanism) project. These two days featured a shared, participative presentation of the main goals and results achieved during the URBACT-guided transfer of the innovative Vilawatt-UIA action on the energy transition that has been under way in Viladecans since 2016.

    • Political Voices from Vilawatt UTM

      One of the significant features of the Vilawatt UTM project is bringing together a number of key stakeholders; from companies, citizens, municipality departments, to local authorities.

    • VIlawatt UTM reaches the finish line

      We reach the finish line

      After all the joint work carried out and once all the cities that are part of the project - Viladecans (Spain), Nagykanizsa (Hungary), Seraing (Belgium), Trikala (Greece) - have finished their Investment Plan projects (Springboard Plan in the case of Viladecans) it's time to cross the finish line.

      20 months during which we have been able to share and exchange experiences with the aim of drawing up Investment Plans that help cities to advance in the energy transition. An objective that has been achieved thanks to the work of the Local Support Groups, the teams in each city, the project coordinators, the methods and tools of URBACT... We had the opportunity to share it all with the public, professionals and experts from the EU in an event in Viladecans on October 18 and 19, 2022 (click here to read the article about the Final Event).

    • Vilawatt UTM Deep Dive Interviews

      In July 2022 partner cities had the chance to visit for the first time Viladecans to see Vilawatt project on the site. After more than one year since the beginning of the project, we took the opportunity to interview Vilawatt UTM partner cities and ask their opinion on the project so far.

    • Vilawatt UTM Learning Webinars - Sharing experiences and learning in order to build future Investment Plan

      The Vilawatt URBACT transfer process includes five learning webinars, the mission of which is for the partner cities to deepen their knowledge of the five pillars that make up the Vilawatt Innovative Practice, and thus be able to better address the task of building the future Investment Plan of each city.

      Miriam Martín

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    • Vilawatt UTM Learning Webinars - Energy Communities: a joint response to a global problem

      Vilawatt-URBACT partner cities met again for a new learning webinar to find out more about Energy Communities and their possible relationship with one of the Vilawatt project's pillars: the co-governance model (PPCP).



      Miriam Martín

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    • Vilawatt UTM Learning Webinars - Energy Pooling & Citizen Engagement in energy efficiency projects

      At the last Transnational Meeting 3, Vilawatt-URBACT partner cities had the opportunity to discuss two of the main pillars of the Vilawatt project in depth through two learning webinars:

      Miriam Martín

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    • Vilawatt Scorecard: when a picture is worth a thousand words

      At the first Transnational Meeting (TM1) with all Vilawatt Project partner cities, last May 2021, a key element that will help guide the transfer process of the Vilawatt Innovative Practice was introduced.



      Miriam Martín

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    • Vilawatt Scorecard: when a picture is worth a thousand words - TM1

      At the first Transnational Meeting (TM1) with all Vilawatt Project partner cities, last May 2021, a key element that will help guide the transfer process of the Vilawatt Innovative Practice was introduced.



      Miriam Martín

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    • The Vilawatt-UTM project starts the Adaptation Period by sharing the urban energy transition experiences from Nagykanizsa

      The third transnational meeting (TM3 – 16-18 November) has once again brought together the partner cities of the Vilawatt UIA-URBACT Transfer Mechanism (Vilawatt-UTM) project online to start the second transfer period, the so-called Adaptation Period.



      Miriam Martín

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    • The Vilawatt project continues efforts in the city of Trikala to promote the energy transition

      https://bit.ly/3bk5SmhThe 4th Vilawatt-UTM Transnational Meeting was held on 2 and 3 March and hosted by the city of Trikala. The two-days online sessions allowed the partner cities to make further progress in the Vilawatt project transfer.



      Miriam Martín

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    • Viladecans’ innovative governance for Energy Transition

      Smaller cities powering up to fight climate change

      Miriam Martín

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    • The political will: a key point for the success of Vilawatt’s Transferability Plan

      We are always speaking about the main 5 pillars of Vilawatt project: a local energy governance structure; green energy supply; new local currency, new training and assessment services, and increase of retrofitting works. However, political consensus is clearly one additional pillar that we have to keep in mind, as it will be crucial for our project’s success.

      Miriam Martín

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    • Vilawatt project partner cities meet virtually at Seraing - TM2

      The Belgian city of Seraing hosted a virtual meeting on 6 and 8 July - the 2nd Transnational Meeting - involving the four partner cities of the Vilawatt UIA Transfer Mechanism. The gathering was an opportunity to deep dive into Seraing case and focus on the transfer capacities of each of the participating cities to work on the contents and tools that will contribute to a better understanding of the project and to define the next steps to be taken.

      Miriam Martín

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    • ULG Views, Viladecans

      URBACT Local Groups are key in the construction of partner cities’ Investment Plans & Springboard Plan. They represent the different stakeholders, members from the community, local government, and the private sector, that could make the successful transfer of Vilawatt’s relevant pillars. 

    • ULG Views, Seraing

      URBACT Local Groups are key in the construction of partner cities’ Investment Plans & Springboard Plan. They represent the different stakeholders, members from the community, local government, and the private sector, that could make the successful transfer of Vilawatt’s relevant pillars. 

    • ULG Views, Trikala

      URBACT Local Groups are key in the construction of partner cities’ Investment Plans & Springboard Plan. They represent the different stakeholders, members from the community, local government, and the private sector, that could make the successful transfer of Vilawatt’s relevant pillars. 

    • ULG VIews, Nagykanizsa

      URBACT Local Groups are key in the construction of partner cities’ Investment Plans & Springboard Plan. They represent the different stakeholders, members from the community, local government, and the private sector, that could make the successful transfer of Vilawatt’s relevant pillars. 


      Vilawatt live and in person

      A group of representatives from the Vilawatt-UTM partner cities visited Viladecans, the city leading the project transfer, on 5 and 6 July to see the results of the Vilawatt model of energy transition in situ.


      The Vilawatt UTM partner city, Trikala, is one step closer to climate neutrality

      The city of Trikala (Greece) is one of the six Greek municipalities chosen by the EU to be part of the 'Climate Neutral and Smart Cities' mission.


      Vilawatt disembarks in the Energy Cities Forum and the UIA Just Transitions and Climate Adaptation event

      During the month of April the Vilawatt project has been attending some of the European forums and events on sustainability. 


      Vilawatt is in Euronews!

      An episode of Smart Regions programme showcases the Vilawatt project. The report underline how power can be saved and managed as a community by getting all the citizens involved

    The VILAWATT Transfer Mechanism pilot boosts the energy transition process by setting up a public-private-citizen partnership, where citizens and main social actors play a key role. The priority is to increase citizen commitment and sense of belonging to promote a sustainable energy transition process. Main achievements in the Lead Partner city, Viladecans, include citizens got a saying at the Consortium through the associations linked to it, using a participatory strategy, as they did not exist before. When it comes to energy supply, Vilawatt pools the demand for energy and provides energy to all association members (100% Certified Renewable Energy) Faster energy retrofitting of private buildings.

    Innovative local public-private-citizen partnership for energy governance
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  • Zero Carbon Cities

    LEAD PARTNER Manchester
    • Frankfurt - Germany
    • Tartu - Estonia
    • Zadar - Croatia
    • Bistrița - Romania
    • Modena - Italy
    • Vilvoorde - Belgium

    The Zero Carbon Cities Action Planning Network will support partner cities to establish science-based carbon reduction targets, policies and action plans, including governance and capacity building to enable them to contribute to the successful implementation of the Paris Agreement and the EU’s strategic vision for carbon neutrality by 2050.

    Zero Carbon Cities
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  • Resilient urban and peri-urban agriculture


    A tool for social inclusion and urban regeneration

    Claudio Bordi
    European Projects Unit
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    • Adapted by the RU:RBAN Transfer Network
    • and by the RU:RBAN Second Wave pilot


    The City of Rome developed a participatory urban gardening project. The aim of the project is two-fold: it fights social exclusion and poverty and allows brownfield recovery.
    Working with NGOs, citizens, disadvantaged people and minorities, the city uses the urban and suburban agriculture as a means to improve governance processes. Alongside employment policy, social and intercultural dialogue has a pre-eminent role to play. The importance of other factors such as housing, health, culture and communication should also be acknowledged.

    The solutions offered by the good practice

    The good practice contributes to the improvement of the governance processes by connecting different competencies and municipal offices such as social, environment, urban planning and innovation departments. UPA is an innovative practice that could provide a governance model for sustainable development, environmental protection, brownfield recovery and reuse, social cohesion and poverty fighting (i.e. immigrants, elderly, disabled people, AIDS and Alzheimer’s patients, prisoners, etc.).

    Building on the sustainable and integrated approach

    Rome (IT) has the widest urban agriculture area in Europe. Its agricultural landscape is immersed in a network of archaeological sites, monuments, villas and farmhouses. Green areas are about 86,000 hectares, 67% of its entire territory. While most green areas are located outside the urban perimeter, several agricultural corridors connect the periphery with the city centre of Rome. This unique feature distinguishes Rome from other European cities that are characterised by a division between urban and rural areas. Rome thus offers a unique potential for further development: citizens are now developing permaculture systems and producing healthier organic food for self-consumption. The aforementioned projects' approach to tackling urban challenges is the result of a territorial cooperation process, involving different partners of the Mediterranean Basin under ENPI CBC MED Programme: the Royal Botanic Garden and the National Department for Forests and Agriculture (Jordan), the city of Mahdia (Tunisia), the metropolitan area of Barcelona and the City of Rome.

    Based on a participatory approach

    Participatory mechanisms for communities and citizens in the new UPA policies/actions allow the former groups a greater capacity for action and decision making on Urban Governance: Urban Agriculture management strategies herein are oriented towards participatory citizenship. Stakeholder like local NGOs and horticulture associations did contribute to the set-up of the Regulation of urban gardens (City Council Resolution, July 2015) activating local representatives of such communities in a process of social and intercultural integration. Socialisation among different communities is the core of this activity.

    What difference has it made?

    The previous experience allowed the City of Rome to experiment the application of the Regulations of urban gardens of Rome approved in 2015, through 3 pilot projects assigned to different non-profit, multipurpose associations in charge of needy and disadvantaged people. At present, approx. 300 people are direct beneficiaries of the parcels. Dozens of associations and thousands of citizens are involved in the pilot projects, and awareness was raised among municipal officers and citizens. The Regulation of the Urban gardens of Rome (City Resolution of July 2015 or “Regolamento degli orti urbani”) is to be considered an extremely important outcome as a governance tool. According to the “Regolamento”, the use of pesticides, chemical fertilisers and GMO seeds are prohibited. The sustainability of the UPA pilot project is ensured by the commitment of the City of Rome (i.e. the “Regolamento”), the Districts, the associations as "managers" of the pilots, the thousands of citizens involved, and by the coordination with a network of urban gardens and other local and national organisations.

    Transferring the practice

    Rome led the RU:RBAN Network over 2.5 years, transferring its practices to 6 other cities: Vilnius (Lithuania), Caen (France), Krakow (Poland), Thessaloniki (Greece), Loures (Portugal), and Coruna (Spain). You can, in particular, check Vilnius’s Good practice here. The approach was based on the three components/elements of the Good practice: capacity building in organizing urban gardens, Inspiring and training people to manage urban gardens (Gardeners) and Urban gardens governance & regulations. The network’s outputs can be found on the URBACT website. RUR:BAN might also be reloaded with a new Transfer Network starting from June 2021.

    Main Theme
    Is a transfer practice
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