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  • EU City Lab on Changing Habits for a Healthy and Sustainable Food System

    Join us in Mouans-Sartoux to learn how habits’ transformation can lead to a healthier and more sustainable urban food system!

     

    The EU City Lab on Local Food Systems #1 will take place in Mouans-Sartoux, France, on Thursday 21 and Friday 22 March 2024. It is a knowledge-sharing event co‑organised by URBACT and the European Urban Initiative (EUI), with support from the municipality of Mouans-Sartoux.

     

    This EU City Lab lab will focus on Changing Habits for a Healthy and Sustainable Food System. Through discussions and knowledge-sharing, thematic sessions, “walkshops” and group activities, the event aims to explore how transformation of food habits can leverage systemic sustainability transition in European cities.

     

     

     

    The lab is a unique opportunity to:

     

    - Learn more about the Mouans-Sartoux’s Good Practice in the field of collective school catering

     

    - Explore how other EU cities followed Mouans-Sartoux’s example through the URBACT BioCanteens and BioCanteens#2 Transfer Networks

     

    - Discover further good practices implemented by other EU cities to foster sustainability in local food systems

     

    - Visit sites in Mouans-Sartoux and exchange with locals about citywide food sustainability, citizen engagement actions and learning communities

     

    - Discuss how local projects towards more healthy and sustainable food habits can be put in place in different national contexts

     

    - Better understand the EU landscape around food systems.

     

     

     

    The Mouans-Sartoux event will be the first in a series of three EU City Labs on Local Food Systems, exploring systemic food transition in European cities from different thematic perspectives. The next labs will be organised in the course of 2024:

     

    - Public Procurement for More Local, Seasonal and Sustainable Food – Liège, Belgium, 29 and 30 May 2024

     

    - Sustainable Land Use for Agri-food (place and date to be unveiled soon).

     

    Click here to learn more on the EU City Lab series. 

     

     

     

    Here is some practical information to organise your trip to Mouans-Sartoux and prepare your participation. 

     

     

     

    Preliminary programme (download it here:  English  |   French)

    (Please click on the arrow to switch to page 2)

     

     

     

    *Meals during the EU City Lab programme are offered.

     

     

     

     

    Do you wish to learn more about URBACT cities' past work on building sustainable local food systems? Visit the URBACT Knowledge Hub on Food and read the following articles:

     

    On the BioCanteens Transfer Network journey and the Mouans-Sartoux Good Practice:

     

    - Jégou, F., Food purchase is an agriculture act!, 8 November 2022

     

    - Jégou, F., BioCanteens#2: cities engaged for food democracy and sovereignty, 13 October 2021

     

    - Copying neighbours. Lessons of BioCanteens Transfer Network. Final publication of BioCanteens#1, June 2021. 

     

    On URBACT work in the field of healthy and sustainable local food systems and the European and international background:

     

    - Bonneau, M., Cities nurturing local food systems to fight climate change, 10 November 2021 (updated on 21 December 2023).

     

    - Bonneau, M., Let's talk about food!, 24 August 2022

     

    - Bonneau, M., Reinforcing local food ecosystems: a recipe for success?, 9 October 2020

     

     

    France

    Join [u]s for the EU City Lab on Local Food Systems #1 by URBACT and European Urban Initiative! Scroll down to discover the programme of the event and register now!

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  • Sipping coffee in Sligo: How a commitment to community and attention to detail turned things around for downtown—one cup at a time

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    Members of the Cities@Heart network
    06/12/2023
    07/12/2023


    The year is 2013 and few residents of Sligo, Ireland have heard of a BID, or Business Improvement District. Stakeholders in the local commerce sector operated independently and seldomly in cooperation with the County Council. Fast forward to December 6, 2023 when a group of 26 individuals from ten different countries all over Europe touched down in Sligo to glean best practices for city centre management. Sligo’s remarkable success story provided a fitting backdrop for the first transnational meeting of the Cities@Heart URBACT Action Planning Network.

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    Members of the Cities@Heart network and meeting attendees

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    Formed in 2023 and piloted by the Greater Paris Metropolis as Lead Partner, the network Cities@Heart brings together 10 different local governments working to create tools for the improvement of city centres. The first network-wide gathering since the URBACT IV launch in 2023, this transnational meeting was a new step in the network journey, an opportunity to exchange and to observe the policies of host partner Sligo County Council and Sligo Business Improvement District. Following 10 different Baseline Study Visits conducted by Lead Expert Mar Santamaria Varas, this meeting also represents the network’s shift from the preparatory to activation phase.

    Network Map

    Meeting in the Land of Heart's Desire

    The first transnational meeting provided project partners the opportunity to obtain feedback on their baseline study visit in the form of the presentation of an overarching methodology to ground the study and set the course for the following two years of inter-european collaboration.

    To kick off the first morning of workshops, participants shared their experiences in the realm of public-private partnership. In Portugal, the budgetary risks taken to build one of the most ambitious road networks in Europe, both per capita and in area, led to some citizens being distrustful of the public-private paradigm. In Krakow (PL), the city approached the Wesoła District’s revitalization with workshops on prototyping solutions for shared spaces to build a sense of community and responsibility for its development among citizens. In Celje (SI), a vacant storefront was left to the use of local stakeholders, providing a successful brick-and-mortar testing ground for new ideas or projects. Back in Sligo, the public-private partnership has proved to be fruitful: the business perspective encourages an objective data-driven approach and the public sector can intervene to implement holistic policy improvements.

    Project partners participating in a morning workshop

    If we can make it in the city centre, we can make it anywhere

    A city centre is a microcosm of social functions and represents the most intricate iteration of urban complexity. While each project partner experiences their city centre in a different way, the network Baseline Study represents the structure of all city centers using a matrix contrasting 7 challenges with 5 indicators.

    From metropolises like Greater Paris (FR) or Krakow (PL)  to smaller cities like Fleurus (BE), for each partner, the diverse challenges may be more or less acute depending on the local context and the means available. Indeed, an imbalance in one of these topics or challenges can greatly aggravate the local context in the city centre, as evinced by the diagrams below.

    Network tool

    To showcase Sligo’s strengths and best practices, the meeting focused on the management of data and local commerce in the city centre. Sligo is a lovely town nestled in a blustery corner of northwest Ireland, minutes from the Atlantic Coast and known for being a literary “land of heart’s desire” with poet W.B. Yeats as a native son. Yet, none of these attributes bring to mind words like “innovation” or “world renowned”. Public policy in Ireland is centralised in Dublin and towns “west of the Shannon” are considered out of the purview of the national stage. In fact, Sligo had historically been “left behind” by urban development schemes deployed elsewhere in the Republic of Ireland.

    Urban solutions with a human approach

    This brings us back to the coffee anecdote… After living and working abroad in the U.S.A. and Australia, Sligo native Gail McGibbon decided to return home. In order to start what would become Ireland’s fourth BID, Gail McGibbon went to work in a seemingly slow way: meeting for a cup of coffee with likely every single business owner in the town, having no other overt objective than sharing a chat. In her seminal work, The Death and LIfe of Great American Cities, Jane Jacobs posits, “there must be eyes upon the street, eyes belonging to those we might call the natural proprietors of the street." While this declaration has taken on a “big brother” connotation since the book’s publication in 1961, the principle rings just as true today. In every city centre, there is a need to be aware of what is happening in the street and with our neighbors or shopkeepers to make sure all are safe and provided for. Indeed, neighborliness proved to be the perfect ingredient to kick-starting the town’s transformation.

    As Chief Executive Officer Martin Lydon explained, in a post-pandemic society, Sligo is leveraging cultural shifts to become a destination for young professionals, students and families seeking proximity to nature and a high level of services. Looking to attract a pool of potential inhabitants keen on finding property in the more affordable western coast of the country, Sligo has invested in a place branding campaign, infrastructure to increase connectivity and the tourism sector, inaugurating their National Surf Centre and a network of cycle paths.

    Turning the local economy around

    Now in 2023, the Sligo BID is healthy and counts 758 members. The BID and Sligo County have worked together tirelessly to introduce innovative measures for data collection, property management, tourism policy and event nightlife. Sligo has developed a Welcome Ambassador Programme, won the Purple Flag Award for night time economy, the label of Coach Friendly Destination and continues to attract international visitors curious about the town’s policies. In the end, Sligo’s shortcomings would eventually become strengths. The lack of urban sprawl meant that the town and county could promote closeness to nature and life at a human scale. The local counter-culture turned out to be a good thing for the health of the town’s high street district.

    Project partners visit the city centre


    The human-ness at the origins of Sligo’s strategy is well reflected in the national Irish Town Centre First strategy which is based at the LGMA and places pragmatism and open dialogue at the forefront. One of the measuring tools of the programme, the Town Centre Health Check Programme, is a public document that serves as an objective evaluation of the town’s progress in implementing best practices. National Coordinator Mairead Hunt presented the country’s policy at the transnational meeting in Sligo and highlighted three core principles: understanding the place, defining the place and enabling the place. The national meeting of Town Regeneration Officers shies away from speeches by elected officials and focuses on peer-to-peer learning.

    Soft approach, hard data

    And yet, Sligo’s strategy didn’t stop at a friendly chat. The county and BID got to work monitoring, measuring and adapting their strategies. Brían Flynn, Town Regeneration Officer, presented the town’s creative use of data in developing their policies. In 2023 the Irish business platform GeoDirectory released data on commercial vacancy in the country. At 25.4%, the rate in Sligo was listed as the highest in the country. In order to curb the negative press and further investigate the truth behind this report which seemed incomplete to local officials, the town decided to collect its own data in the form of a comprehensive land-use policy survey. The study is still being carried out but the town has already gained valuable knowledge on the vacancy profile of downtown property and 16 landowners have discovered the national Croí Conaithe scheme for refurbishment of vacant buildings.

    Brían Flynn presents Sligo’s data policies

    In turn, after witnessing Sligo policies first-hand through a series of site-specific visits and presentations, the network conducted a workshop on the subject of information gathering to address issues all along the chain of data management: identifying data sources, collecting data and data governance. While obtaining data can be simpler than expected, data-driven policy requires vision and advanced planning in order to identify independent sources of information and a successful, manageable tool for translating data into actionable proposals for city improvement.

    Network partners enjoy a performance of traditional Irish music at the Tourism Bureau

    An inaugural meeting for the network and for new URBACT participant Sligo, the event was opened by Cllr. Gerard Mullaney, Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council and attended by Irish National URBACT Point Karl Murphy and Kristijan Radojčić of the URBACT Secretariat. The meeting was drawn to a close with a hike to glimpse the breathtaking vistas at the summit of the Knocknarea rock formation, providing a bird’s eye view of the Atlantic coast and the Sligo town centre.

    Network partners hike the Knocknarea rock formation

    With one meeting completed and the new year well on its way, the URBACT Cities@Heart network has three transnational meetings planned in Granada (ES), with the Quadrilatero Urbano Association (PT) and in Cesena (IT). Ensuing transnational meetings and those of Urban Local Groups (ULGs) will allow the network to share learnings and experiment small-scale actions over the next year.

    Network members :

    • The Greater Paris Metropolis, France
    • The City of Cesena, Italy
    • The City of Granada, Spain
    • The City of Osijek, Croatia
    • Amfiktyonies, a business development organization representing the City of Lamia, Greece
    • The City of Celje, Slovenia
    • The City of Fleurus, Belgium
    • The City of Sligo, Ireland
    • The Krakow Metropolis Association, Poland
    • The Quadrilátero Urbano Association, Portugal

     

     

  • EU City Labs take on agriculture and food systems

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    Urban garden in Mouans-Sartoux (FR) - Photo by François Jégou
    15/02/2024

    How can we put the transition issues related to food back on the table and in the minds of policy-makers and citizens?

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    Urban garden in Mouans-Sartoux (FR).
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    The global food systems cause roughly 1/3 of the greenhouse gas emissions, and the climate impact of major industries (e.g. meat, dairy) brings into question the sustainability of our eating habits. New solutions are being considered to facilitate the transition away from food waste to more sustainable agri-food systems. Unlocking the potential of urban agriculture and building communities around solutions for organic farming, urban greening and biodiversity can accelerate the transformation of food practices, as the URBACT Network Sustainable Food in Urban Communities has clearly shown. 

    In March 2024, URBACT and the European Urban Initiative will kick off a series of EU City Labs on Local Food Systems. On 21-22 March, the first of three in the series puts the spotlight on Mouans-Sartoux. Here’s how this small French town has taken on organic, locally sourced food and emerged as a major player in the urban food transition and the leader of two URBACT Transfer Networks. 

     

    When in Mouans-Sartoux

     

    To better understand Mouans-Sartoux's food policy achievements, why not take a closer look at the local way of life? Between 2016 and 2022, a study financed from ADEME (French Agency for Ecological Transition) evaluated carbon impact in Mouans-Sartoux. According to the evaluation, while food represents a yearly average of 2 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions per person in France, it is only about 1,17 tonnes in the city. In addition, the number of inhabitants reducing their consumption of meat has increased to 85% in less than 10 years. Of course, Mouans-Sartoux doesn’t exist in a vacuum. Other European cities, including Haarlem (NL), are pushing forth legislation to ban meat advertisements. 

    A Table ! Mouans-Sartoux Food Forum - Photo by François Jégou

    Group discussion during the A Table ! Mouans-Sartoux Food Forum. Source: François Jégou.

     

    Visual transcription 

     

    In France, Mouans-Sartoux is one of four towns offering 100% organic meals in public school canteens, where 1 000 primary school children eat every day. Half of the meals are strictly vegetarian, and almost exclusively locally sourced. Also, the municipal farm, located 700 metres away from the town centre, supplies the school kitchens, and the three municipal  farmers harvest 25 tonnes of vegetables per year. The municipality's support for the installation of young organic producers on communal land represents another successful measure, accompanying a general embrace of “zero food waste”. 

    The municipality also succeeded in creating the MEAD – Center for Sustainable Food Education: the true city public food service. The centre is politically committed to fair trade and it supports the Positive Food Families Challenge. As Valery Bousiges, a parent of a primary school student, put it: "The question is not when is something happening about food in Mouans-Sartoux, but what is happening today." 

    Finally, the city's "permanent public activism" is proving its effectiveness with the Citizen feeds the city urban gardens. "These collective gardens grow vegetables and fruit, but above all they produce socialisation between the inhabitants of the neighbourhood", says Rob Hopkins during a visit to one of the association’s six gardens, a project that was conceptualised by the MEAD - Sustainable Food Education Centre and set up by the local residents. 

      

     

    Two URBACT Networks standing up against bio sceptics

     

    The "Mouans-Sartoux approach" is a bearing fruit, as it builds on long-term awareness and education for a sustainable transition. Yet, this transition is rooted in changing behaviour which, even when anticipated, is not always speedy or easy. In his book L'Homnivore, Claude Fischler explains that, through the mechanism of “food embodiment”, we become what we eat. This applies both physically and symbolically, hence an increased resistance to any diet changes. Unless our lives depend on it, like they once did for the first humans, dietary changes can threaten one’s identity altogether. 

    As Andrea Lulovicovà, from Greniers d'Abondance, and Chantal Clément, from IPES FOOD, remind us, the food transition rests on three critical pillars: the agricultural transition, the relocation of food and the transformation of food practices. It is not enough to produce organic and local food if we do not change the way we eat.  

    The example of Mouans-Sartoux and all the other towns in food transition tick all three boxes. This is also why the pioneering town was primed to lead two URBACT Transfer Networks advancing good practices, transfer modules and stories on sustainable local food models. BioCanteens (2018-2021) and BioCanteens#2 (2021-2022) involved the following partner cities and organisations: Gavà (ES), LAG Pays des Condruses (BE), Liège (BE), Rosignano Marittimo (IT), Torres Vedras (PT), Trikala (EL), Troyan (BG), Vaslui (RO) and Wroclaw (PL). 

    True to name, the BioCanteens URBACT Transfer Networks aimed at reducing food waste by 80%, specifically in the field of collective school catering. Through these networks, Mouans-Sartoux devised and shared good practices for an integrated local agri-food approach, protecting both citizens’ health and the environment. These practices, and more, can be found in the BioCanteens toolbox, which includes a projective exercise on the food sovereignty of each city and the future of its food-producing land by 2040, in addition to a simulation game to create a municipal food platform, a poster outlining a multi-level food governance plan and the Bio Sceptics card game. The card game is intended to debunk clichés associated with organic food heard from farmers, traders, consumers, municipal services and others. 

    Participants of the A table ! Food Forum in Mouans-Sartoux (FR) playing the Bio Sceptics card game - Photo: François Jégou

    Participants of the A table ! Food Forum in Mouans-Sartoux (FR) playing the Bio Sceptics card game. Source: François Jégou.

     

    A key output of the BioCanteens Networks was the “A Table !" Mouans-Sartoux Food Forum”. Between 26-28 September 2022, the Forum brought together more than 150 stakeholders from 10 countries – including 50 local authorities, more than 20 NGOs and official structures involved in the food transition. 

    The central question of the event was: How can we support cities in food transition at national and European level? It is worth re-listening to some voices from the Forum, which divulge more ‘food for thought’: 

    - According to Gilles Pérole, Deputy Mayor of Mouans-Sartoux, “The free circulation of goods guaranteed by the European Market Code goes against the re-territorialisation of food and support for local agricultural transition. We need an exception to this European Code for food markets". 

    - Food sovereignty – the central theme of the Forum – means reclaiming the ability to choose what we put on our plates. Fabrice Riem, lawyer and Coordinator of the Lascaux Centre on Transitions, presented an interesting take on how to operationalise exceptions, without breaking the rules. 

    - Riem and Davide Arcadipane, from the city of Liège (BE) discussed the process of dividing public tenders into multiple lots – in order to facilitate the access of school canteens to supplies coming from small local producers. Riem pointed out how this process, which is now commonplace, represents a way to bend the Public Procurement Code without undermining it. That being said, splitting tenders into 300 to 400 lots, as practiced by the city of Dijon (FR), require human resources capacity that small cities do not have at their disposal and, therefore, a first distinction has to be made in terms of the size of the different cities. 

    - Kevin Morgan, of Cardiff University, noted that if cities want to “express their purchasing power to bring about a local food system”, it would be possible to do so using current rural laws and seizing existing competencies from municipalities. At least in France, this is the way to ensure territorial anchoring, to design a call for tenders for food supply that requires a contribution to the construction of the local food system and that, ultimately, are in line with a Territorial Food Plan. 

    - At the European level, the suggestions that were collected point to the same direction: it is fundamental to create a direct link between Europe and the cities that are capable of rebuilding a high-quality local agricultural fabric. Especially in terms of direct funding for public agricultural production, as for example the potential creation of "urban leader" or "inter-rural urban leader" projects. 

    - All these ideas represented, in a practical and operational way, the principles outlined by Carlo Petrini, the founder of the Slow Food movement: consuming food is much more than just eating, it is an agricultural act. Likewise, producing and buying food is not simply supplying the city's canteens, it means building a coherent local territorial food system. 

      

     

    Going back to the Lab

    EU City Lab Mouans-Sartoux

    Now, Mouans-Sartoux will host the EU City Lab on Local Food Systems #1 on 21-22 March 2024. The agenda is already available online and registration is open until 7 March! This will be a unique opportunity to learn more about good practices in the field of collective school catering, look closer at the URBACT BioCanteens and Biocanteens#2 Transfer Networks and discuss how local projects can boost more healthy, sustainable food habits among citizens across different countries and regions. 

    Do you wish to learn more about URBACT cities' past work on building sustainable local food systems? For a deep dive into Moans-Sartoux’s and other urban agri-food practices, there are plenty of materials on the URBACT Knowledge Hub – Food and sustainable local systems.  

     

     

    Disclaimer: This article is an update to a publication by François Jégou from 08/11/2022 

  • Laboratorul Urban al Uniunii Europene axat pe Schimbarea Obiceiurilor pentru un Sistem Alimentar Sănătos și Durabil

    Vă invităm să participați la evenimentul care va avea loc la Mouans-Sartoux, în perioada 21-22 martie a.c., pentru a descoperi cum schimbarea obiceiurilor poate contribui la crearea unui sistem alimentar urban mai sănătos și durabil!

     

    Acest laborator urban al UE se va concentra pe Schimbarea Obiceiurilor pentru un Sistem Alimentar Sănătos și Durabil. Prin intermediul discuțiilor și schimbului de cunoștințe, a sesiunilor tematice, "walkshops"-urilor și activităților de grup, evenimentul își propune să analizeze cum transformarea obiceiurilor alimentare poate cataliza tranziția sistemică către sustenabilitate în orașele europene.


    Laboratorul reprezintă o oportunitate unică pentru:

    • a afla mai multe despre Buna Practică a Mouans-Sartoux în ceea ce privește serviciile de catering colectiv pentru școli
    • a descoperi cum alte orașe din UE au adoptat modelul Mouans-Sartoux prin intermediul rețelelor de transfer URBACT BioCanteens și BioCanteens#2.
    • a identifica și alte bune practici implementate de alte orașe din UE pentru a promova sustenabilitatea în sistemele alimentare locale.
    • a vizita locații în Mouans-Sartoux și pentru a discuta cu localnicii despre sustenabilitatea alimentară la nivelul orașului, acțiunile de implicare a cetățenilor și comunitățile de învățare.
    • a discuta despre modalitățile de implementare a proiectelor locale destinate promovării unor obiceiuri alimentare mai sănătoase și durabile în diverse contexte naționale.
    • pentru a înțelege mai bine contextul Uniunii Europene în ceea ce privește sistemele alimentare.

     

    Evenimentul de la Mouans-Sartoux va deschide seria de trei Laboratoare Urbane ale UE despre Sisteme Alimentare Locale, care vor explora tranziția alimentară sistemică în orașele europene din diferite perspective tematice. Urmele laboratoare vor fi organizate în cursul anului 2024:

    • Achiziții publice pentru promovarea alimentelor locale, sezoniere și sustenabile -
    • Liège, Belgia, 29 și 30 mai 2024
    • Utilizarea durabilă a terenurilor pentru producția agroalimentară (detaliile referitoare la locație și dată vor fi anunțate în curând).

     


    Click aici pentru a afla mai multe despre seria de Laboratoare Urbane ale UE.

     

    Draftul programului


    Mesele sunt incluse în programul evenimentului


    Detaliile practice referitoare la locație și vizitele în oraș în Mouans-Sartoux vor fi comunicate participanților înregistrați.

     


    Doriți să descoperiți mai multe despre experiența orașelor URBACT în dezvoltarea unor sisteme alimentare locale durabile? Accesați URBACT Knowledge Hub on Food despre Alimentație și consultați articolele disponibile.

     


    Cu privire la călătoria rețelei de transfer BioCanteens și la Buna Practică a Mouans-Sartoux:

    - ,,Jégou, F., Food purchase is an agriculture act!, 8 November 2022

    - Jégou, F., BioCanteens#2: cities engaged for food democracy and sovereignty, 13 October 2021

    - Copying neighbours. Lessons of BioCanteens Transfer Network. Final publication of BioCanteens#1, June 2021”.

     

    Referitor la munca URBACT în promovarea sistemelor alimentare locale sănătoase și durabile și la contextul european și internațional:

     - ,,Bonneau, M., Cities nurturing local food systems to fight climate change, 10 November 2021 (updated on 21 December 2023).

    - Bonneau, M., Let's talk about food!, 24 August 2022

    - Bonneau, M., Reinforcing local food ecosystems: a recipe for success?, 9 October 2020”.

     

    Agenda evenimentului (în limba engleză și în limba franceză) poate fi descărcată la următorul link 

     

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    • FOOD

    Alăturați-vă primului Laborator Urban al UE despre Sisteme Alimentare Locale #1, organizat de URBACT și Inițiativa Urbană Europeană cu sprijinul primăriei din Mouans-Sartoux! Explorați programul evenimentului derulând în jos și înregistrați-vă acum!

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  • URBACT Networks: the search for a perfect partner

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    A group of people crossing the zebra crossing.
    31/01/2024

    How to put together a strong partnership for an URBACT Network. 

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    Since 2002, URBACT Networks have been bringing European cities together to exchange and learn from each other and develop and test urban solutions.  

    Looking at past and upcoming opportunities, we’re presented with the age-old question: What makes a strong partnership? We’ve scanned through previous and existing URBACT Networks to extract general URBACT partnering tips, with specific reference to eligibility requirements for upcoming calls for URBACT Networks

     

    The URBACT Network experience 

     

    Stated simply, URBACT Networks are open to cities, metropolitan areas, districts, boroughs, and other public equivalent bodies, often lasting 2.5 years and involving partners from a host of different countries.  

    Last year’s round of calls was dedicated to Action Planning Networks; and a new round of applications will be opened before the end of the programme. The call for Innovation Transfer Networks is open until 20 March 2024 and a call for successful Good Practices will run from 15 April to 30 June 2024.  

    The three types of URBACT Networks

    There’s something incredibly rewarding and motivating about connecting with colleagues from other cities across Europe focused on driving change. Looking at a few recent examples, urban sustainable mobility plans are being set up in Latvia, Lithuania, Croatia, Poland, Italy, Spain and Slovenia. Urban communities across Bulgaria, Hungary, Slovenia, Portugal, Spain, Italy, Ireland, Netherlands and Bosnia-Herzegovina are mending relationships between cities and nature. Other Networks have set out to understand why smaller cities are happier, employment access for urban youths, and more.

    Get the latest insights from these Networks in thematic articles produced by the experts leading them! 

     

    Innovation Transfer: a new type of partnership 

     

    Unlike other types of URBACT Networks, the Lead Partners of Innovation Transfer Networks must have been involved in projects funded under the Urban Innovative Actions (UIA) initiative between 2016 and 2023.  

    Over 24 months, the city with an UIA project will transfer experience and know-how to other cities following three stages: Understand, Adapt, Prepare for re-use. A key output for each city involved will be a solid Investment Plan.   

    ITN Network composition

    Additional information on this new call (including eligibility requirements) can be found in the Terms of Reference. We also prepared an article on Innovation Transfer Network project ideas found using the Partner Search Tool, along with a recording from our online info session on finding strong partnerships

     

    The evolution and transformation of URBACT Networks

     

    Many cities have worked together through evolutions of URBACT Networks. It’s worth taking stock of this evolution by looking at examples from earlier Networks. These achievements are a testament to the URBACT Method – its ability to unite people and communities together – and the trust and team spirit developed amongst partners. 

    In the area of tech and the digital transition, Techtown and TechRevolution come to mind, along with a spin-off, the TechRevolution 2.0. Likewise, the original Action Planning Network PROCURE later turned into the Transfer Network Making Spend Matter. Both cases had many cities in common, including the same ones acting as Lead Partners. 

    In other cases, a specific theme was used as a common thread and as an occasion for cities to evolve and seek out new directions. This was the case of AGRI-URBAN a network in which many partners moved towards Horizon 2020 opportunities, while other partners developed an URBACT Transfer Network, the BioCanteens, counting with yet another spin-off, the BioCanteens 2. It is also worth mentioning that the Lead Partner of both BioCanteens Networks, Mouans-Sartoux a small French town, was originally a new-comer Project Partner in AGRI-URBAN. 

    Some towns went on to deliver the Erasmus PART-Y project around gender-sensitive youth services and participation. While a project partner from CREATIVE SPIRITS Implementation Networks has pursued its project with Urban Innovative Actions’ funds, the partners from the Re-growCity Transfer Network founded a brand new project with EuroTowns. More recently, some of the cities from the SibDev Action Planning Network had their bid for an Interreg Europe project approved. 

    Several (or parts of) Networks have gone on in the past to work together in different shapes and sizes both within and beyond URBACT; for instance, more than 30% of the URBACT III cities applied to Horizon 2020 after the end of their Networks. The original Electric Vehicles in Urban Europe Network went on to leverage the results into a multi-million euro demonstration project. 

    Two people networking

    Before initiating your partner search, get a refresher on the following tried-and-tested tips for a strong, enduring partnership… 

     

    1. The more the merrier 

     

    There is no such thing as the “perfect size” of a partnership, but it’s better to choose more than the minimum number of partners. One partner might drop out at the very last minute or join another proposal, does not provide the signed Letter of Commitment on time, etc.  

    URBACT pro-tip: Once an URBACT Network is approved and activities get started, some partners can turn out to be less active than expected. Therefore, developing a partnership with a minimum number of partners is also risky should some of them turn out to be “sleeping partners”.  

     

    2. Trust the pitch 

     

    Trust is a key ingredient in any partnership. Once a potential partner has been identified, it’s important to consider, exactly, what they are looking for in a partnership. Is it money? Professional development? The chance to improve participative and integrated approaches? An opportunity to develop a plan that has more chance of securing EU and national funds?   

    Make sure that partners are applying to the right fund for the right reasons. Try to detect some potential red flags in candidate partners’ interest; for instance, if they: 

    - want to become an URBACT city with my topic, no matter what network; 

    - want to become an URBACT city although not equipped to actually handle the topic and make a difference at local level; 

    - are more interested in the budget than the policy challenge; 

    - are an ambitious politician with no commitment of wider municipality administration (incl. staff allowed to travel etc.); 

    - are an ambitious officer with no support from politicians who understand the importance of the project.  

    Another good indicator is the responsiveness of a potential partner at early stages. If they have to be chased for information and input, then maybe that’s not a good omen. 

    Breakout sessions network

     

    3.    Strike a (geographical) balance


    Across different URBACT Networks, successful partnerships have been formed with cities of different sizes, from different regional contexts, at different stages of development. In fact, the mutual learning does not go in a single direction, from “well-developed” to “less-developed” partners. There are always interesting insights to discover, through peer exchange and site visits, which promote reflection and innovative thinking. What matters is to clearly demonstrate the rationale of working in this formation, that the partners have a shared interest in the common challenge and have established this together before submitting the application.


    Depending on the type of network, the eligibility requirements might change (so, always check the Terms of Reference for each call). 


    4.    Check the (shared) directions

     

    Beyond the number and location, aim for coherence and complementarity when it comes to partner needs, expectations and potential contributions.


    Do not accept new partners on a “first come, first served” basis. Take time to speak with the relevant people in a candidate partner city before deciding on the final partnership list. Try to avoid cities who reach out through consultants – this can be an indication that the city does not have real interest and/or capacity to become committed and active partner. 

    From our experience a vital element of productive partnership is a genuine shared interest and need around a particular challenge, whether that be mobility, digital transition or something else. Each partner also needs to bring a commitment to truly engage with all elements of the URBACT Programme. That means full participation in all meetings, openness and honesty as well as willingness and enthusiasm to complete related tasks and support others.  It means learning about the URBACT Method, building local capacity and integrating URBACT’s cross-cutting themes of digital, green and gender equality into policymaking

     

    5.    Be respectful

     

    A little respect can go a long way when it comes to partnerships – whether it is shown by respecting deadlines or the Network’s proposed roadmap.

    A partnership that is successful doesn’t cut corners. This means really thinking about how much time and effort will be involved over the 2.5-year timeframe. Can city partners commit the right kind of resource? Are they able to find the level of match funding? Can they allocate or hire the right staff to fulfil the local project roles? Do they have the finance team that can do the reporting on time and understand the audit control? Are they ready to set up and drive the local group and encourage local stakeholders to get involved at both local and transnational level? 

     

    6.    Experience isn’t everything

     

    Not all cities in Europe have had the opportunity to take part in an URBACT Network and experience the “URBACT learning journey”. Thus, URBACT’s guiding principle is to ensure participation of a maximum number of cities in URBACT Networks. URBACT is particularly seeking to support cities which are new to the programme, i.e. the city has not been a partner in URBACT II or III. It’s important to consider all these elements when selecting partners without sacrificing the quality and relevance of the project proposal. 
     

     

    7. Last but not least: take advantage of URBACT tools & resources

     

    Unsure of where to find suitable candidates? The easy answer lies in URBACT’s Partner Search Tool. To make the most of this tool, you need to know what you are looking for…and that depends on the call.  

    Although the platform might ignite many exchanges and allow people to have first contact with others, we are aware that many partnerships are done offline. URBACT events – notably, EU City Labs and City Festivals – are a great way to get in touch with other cities and meet new peers. The next URBACT City Festival will take place in 8-10 April 2025 in a Polish city, and it will be the perfect occasion to find partners for the call for Transfer Networks (also opening in April 2025). 

    Another way to get an overview of other proposals and opportunities is to reach out to the National URBACT Points. They are basically the programme’s ambassadors, who represent URBACT and communicate about it on a regular basis using local languages. To further disseminate information about the call, they have been organising National Infodays  both in-person and online, which cities are welcome to attend. 

     


     

    Interested in becoming a project partner in an Innovation Transfer Network? Find some useful links to the main documents (Terms of Reference, Guide for Applicants, Programme Manual) and call infographic here (under the ‘Documents’ section). 

    If you want to know more about the projects and partners of future Innovation Transfer Networks, read this article and watch our online info session on building a strong partnership in the context of the call for Innovation Transfer Networks. We also offer a host of other webinars and different materials.  

    In any case, the Joint Secretariat is here to help at itn@urbact.eu. Although it's not possible to provide an active matchmaking service, there are several resources to help along the application process.  

     

     

     

  • Retour sur l'Infoday URBACT France&Luxembourg 2024

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    Bannière ITN 24 - NUP webpage
    25/01/2024

    L’Infoday URBACT France&Luxembourg s’est tenu le 25 janvier 2024 en ligne. Vous trouverez ici le replay et le support diffusé en direct

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    Télécharger la présentation PowerPoint

     

    Plus d'information sur l'appel à réseaux de transfert d'innovation

     

    Tous les projets UIA proposés

     

    Contactez itn@urbact.eu

     

  • Innovation Transfer Networks: the search is on for project ideas

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    Partner Search Tool - Innovation Transfer Networks
    19/01/2024

    URBACT’s call for Innovation Transfer Networks is open, and with it, the Partner Search Tool is ready to help cities develop European partnerships.  

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    URBACT’s call for Innovation Transfer Networks is open, and with it, the Partner Search Tool is updated and ready to help cities develop European partnerships. 

    Running until 20 March 2024, this call for networks is slightly different from other URBACT calls: the pool of available project ideas is based on Urban Innovative Actions projects carried out between 2016 and  2023 and only those cities can lead the transfer network. This is a unique opportunity to adapt a newly tested innovation to your city. 

    There are currently over 20 topics to choose from, covering urban poverty, migration, housing, security, renewable energy, land and air quality, culture and heritage, demographic change and digital transition. 

    We’ve taken a closer look at the pool of ideas, to help you identify the ones that could interest your city the most.

     

    Energy

     

    Energy poverty is a priority topic in many European cities, particularly as energy prices spiked following Russia’s ongoing war of aggression in Ukraine. Getafe (ES) has developed a new, data-driven model to identify and prevent energy poverty, collaborating across departments to identify hidden poverty. Targeted actions can then be carried out at the level of the individual, building or neighbourhood. Getafe showed that the approach was effective in reducing energy vulnerability. Does this sound like a tool your city could use? 

    Building on the participatory approach to energy transition, Leidel (BE) has put a local energy community in place, to provide affordable, renewable, locally-produced and autonomously managed electricity for citizens. RE/SOURCED builds on the momentum for clean energy across Europe, in line with the Clean Energy for all Europeans package. Its results are highly relevant for other cities putting circularity and citizens and the centre of the energy transition.

     

    Air/soil quality

     

    Cities looking to make advances in the quality of the air or the soil should look at three innovative actions in particular. Baia Mare (RO) proposes a revolutionary approach for reclaiming heavy metal-polluted land using plants and returning the land to the community. An adaptable dynamic platform and toolkit can help you determine the best use for the land. Two Italian cities have developed citizen-centric and data-led models to improve air quality. Ferrara (IT) has set up low-cost sensors and mobile air quality stations to map high emission zones and transform them into urban green forests. Portici (IT) also developed a widespread monitoring system based on citizen science, combined with educational activities and events to promote behavioural change.

     

    Digital tools

     

    Digital tools have been put to use in cities to support policy and decision-making in different domains. Vienna (AT) has developed ICT solutions to set new standards in building applications and planning permissions. The tool can be adapted to other permit processes in cities – making bureaucracy more efficient, more transparent and more cost effective. Heerlen (NL) has created an innovative digital platform to enhance public space, foster community engagement and revitalise local areas. It crowdsources public maintenance tasks, which citizens can carry out in return for credit that can be used in local shops and bars. A digital approach was also taken by Ravenna (IT) for an urban regeneration process in one neighbourhood, Darsena. Combining collaborative data collection, the digital infrastructure supports decision-making, storytelling and promotion. It has shown increased engagement in Darsena’s evolution from an abandoned dockland to an attractive urban ecosystem. The network could focus on adapting both the technological and methodological processes to other cities. 

    Rennes (FR) has taken on the issue of e-government solutions directly, designing a portal for the use and re-use of data while guaranteeing privacy and public service interests. The Reusable Urban Data Interface is 100% open source and ready to scale up to cities seeking to harness local data. 

     

    Jobs & skills

     

    The emphasis on green and digital transitions means that the skill profiles of the workforce in a city must adapt and evolve to these transitions. Eindhoven (NL) faces a paradox that, despite high economic growth, there is a significant shortage of qualified personnel, particularly in low-carbon technology development. The Platform4Work redesigns the employment journey, developing a ‘skills passport’, restructuring educational programmes and bringing employers and jobseekers closer together. Aveiro (PT) positions itself as a territory of digital innovation, but has faced severe shortages of digital skills. The city set up the first Tech City Living Lab to attract and retain talent through STEAM education, training, technology and addressing local challenges. Cuenca (ES) uses its specific location within a forest region to build an innovative bio-economy sector, combining training, research, and the incubation and acceleration of forest-related businesses. The award-winning model can be transferred to other EU cities with a forest or other niche bio-economy sector. 

     

    Culture/heritage

     

    Cities must use all of the resources available to them to improve citizens’ quality of life, whether digital, physical or cultural. In Újbuda (HU), culture and digital platforms were combined to create a bottom-up creative cultural resource management tool to strengthen social cohesion. Alongside the digital sphere, a physical cultural institution was created, integrating local cultural and technological initiatives, bringing together the local community, public and private sectors. Cities can explore low-budget interventions as well as major investments. Chalandri (EL) focused on an ancient monument – in their case, the Hadrian Aqueduct – as a vehicle for urban regeneration and revitalising community life. Using a cross-sectoral approach, it co-creates local projects and cultural events with communities, valorising local history and improving care of water and natural resources. It can be adapted to other cities with different types of local heritage, to build trust and nurture communities. In Tilburg (NL), the city uses culture as an agent for social transformation. Developing a cultural ecosystem in an ethnically mixed and disadvantaged area helps bridge the gap between those in the margins, and the public services they interact with. More than 3 000 young people were reached through 150 projects, with positive effects on health, behaviour and public safety. 

     

    Social inclusion

     

    Many cities are taking innovative and participatory approaches to tackling long-standing issues of social exclusion. Seraing (BE) takes on isolation and community-building through an experimental project to revitalise public spaces in the town centre. An inclusive urban planning process and training of local residents reinvented the spaces, resulting in ongoing civic projects. A more tailored approach was tested in Landshut (DE) to overcome the vicious cycle of single parents unable to work due to lack of childcare. Focusing on healthcare professions, which require long and flexible work hours, the city developed a new form of flexible childcare. Single parents receive training in childcare to look after the children of healthcare workers, in an interconnected building. This represents a novel approach to tackling the shortage of skilled workers in some professions that disproportionately affect women. 

    Verona (IT) is tackling loneliness, brought about by changing demographics and an erosion of family networks. By developing a ‘loneliness index’ and activating community resources in a combined approach, they aim to identify and reduce symptoms of loneliness for increased wellbeing.  

    Brussels (BE) is taking on the affordable housing headache that many citizens face through a co-housing project, developed within the framework of a Community Land Trust. By separating the ownership of the land from the ownership of the housing built on it, speculation is removed, and focus is put on ensuring accessible housing for those often neglected: low-income families, older people, homeless people, and single mothers. 

    Utrecht (NL) is proposing to share its innovative approach to the reception and integration of newcomers in the city, particularly asylum seekers. By revising completely how newcomers are housed, integrated and trained, they create meaningful encounters beyond the labels of ‘refugee’ or ‘local’. The flexibility and focus on the local immediate surroundings of reception centres will enable any city that joins the network to develop their own version which connects their locals and newcomers.  

     

    Urban security

     

    Making urban spaces safer at night is an issue for many European cities. We want to look at two cities offering new approaches to community-based urban security. Piraeus (EL) has developed an holistic model, establishing local collaboration for crime prevention, an online platform to assess physical and cyber threats, and spatial interventions to secure and beautify vulnerable buildings. Turin (IT) focuses on a multi-disciplinary approach to manage public spaces and improve residents’ perception of safety at night. Actions to boost the territorial potential, involving local communities, made neighbourhoods more liveable in the evening. 

     

     

    Which one is for you?

     

    These cities are looking for partners to transfer these practices and concrete innovation outputs. You can use the partner search tool to get in touch with any of the cities to find out more and develop your network together. 

    The Get Involved page has all you need to apply for the URBACT Innovation Transfer Networks!


     

     

     

     

  • L’appel à réseaux de transfert d’innovation URBACT est lancé !

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    Bannière ITN 24 - NUP webpage
    10/01/2024

    Du 10 janvier au 20 mars 2024, les Collectivités locales sont invitées à candidater pour devenir partenaires de projets. Découvrez ici toutes les modalités sur ce nouvel appel visant à transférer des projets qui ont été financés dans le cadre des actions innovatrices urbaines (UIA).

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    L’appel à réseaux de transfert d’innovation

    URBACT a lancé un appel à réseaux de transfert d'innovation le 10 janvier 2024, une opportunité exceptionnelle pour les villes européennes de transférer et d'adapter à leurs contextes locaux un projet innovant réalisé dans le cadre des Actions Innovatrices Urbaines.

    Découvrez toutes les informations relatives à l'appel - les termes de référence, les villes chefs de file potentielles et les idées de projet à transférer, ainsi que les dates des sessions d'information au niveau européen et national sur urbact.eu/get-involved.

    En attendant, jetez un coup d'œil à l'infographie suivant pour en savoir plus sur les réseaux de transfert d'innovation et les possibilités qu'ils offrent !

    Une série de Webinaires explicatifs

    Le Secrétariat URBACT vous propose une série de webinaires explicatifs tout au long de la phase de candidature, du 10 janvier au 20 mars, pour tout savoir sur l'appel à candidatures pour les Réseaux de transfert d'innovation et poser vos questions !

            Ÿ  le 16 janvier de 10h00 à 11h00 CET : L'appel en bref et ses caractéristiques : Questions et réponses

            Ÿ   le 23 janvier de 10h00 à 11h00 CET : Comment construire un partenariat solide pour les réseaux de transfert d’innovation ?

            Ÿ  le 6 février de 10h00 à 11h00 CET : Échange et apprentissage au cours d’un séjour dans un réseau URBACT

            Ÿ  le 7 mars de 10h00 à 11h00 CET : Il est temps de candidater ! Appui technique et dépannage

            Ÿ  le 14 mars de 10h00 à 11h00 CET : Le dépannage final !

    Un Infoday en français dédié le 25 janvier prochain

    Pour entrer dans les détails de cet appel, une session d’information en ligne et en français est organisée le 25 janvier prochain.

    N’hésitez pas à vous inscrire sur ce lien pour connaître les modalités de cet appel et échanger sur les possibilités d’intégrer un réseau.

     

  • Infoday France&Luxembourg

    Bannière Infoday ITN 24

    Cette session en ligne sera consacrée à l'appel pour les réseaux ITN, pour lequel la période de candidature pour les réseaux de villes européennes s'étend du 10 janvier au 20 mars 2024. Ces réseaux visent à transférer des projets qui ont été financés dans le cadre des actions innovatrices urbaines (UIA).

     

    Au programme : 

    • 10h00 : URBACT, qu'est-ce que c'est ?
    • 10h15 : L'appel ITN, en quoi cela consiste ? Présentation de l'appel
    • 11h00 : Devenir partenaire d'un réseau URBACT
    • 11h15 : Retour d'expérience d'un partenaire français de réseau de transfert 
    • 11h30 : Temps de questions/réponses
    • 12h00 : Point d'actualité sur l'European urban initiative et l'appel à bonnes pratiques
    • 12h30 : Conclusion et fin.

    France
    • Urban Innovative Actions

    Dans le cadre du lancement de l'appel à réseaux de transfert d'innovation URBACT (ITN), une journée d'information en ligne est organisé par le Point de contact URBACT France et Luxembourg.

      National URBACT Point
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      Open to a wider public
    • Se préparer pour les réseaux de transferts d'innovation (ITN)

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      10/01/2024

      Du 10 janvier au 20 mars 2024, URBACT lance l'appel Innovation Transfer Networks (ITN). L'objectif de ces réseaux est de transférer des projets financés dans le cadre des Actions Innovantes Urbaines ( UIA ) vers d'autres villes de l'Union européenne, d'Albanie, de Bosnie-Herzégovine, du Monténégro, de Macédoine du Nord et de Serbie.

       

      Cet article a été traduit du site URBACT . L'original peut être consulté ici : https://urbact.eu/whats-new/stories/get-ready-innovation-transfer-networks

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      Qu’est-ce que les villes y gagnent ?

      Grâce à cet appel, les villes ayant reçu un financement pour développer une Action Urbaine Innovante (UIA) de 2016 à 2023 sont invitées à agir en tant que Lead Partners (LP) et à transférer leur expérience, leurs connaissances techniques et leurs conseils à d'autres villes intéressées par la mise en œuvre d'un projet similaire. en cours. Grâce à la méthodologie de transfert URBACT - Comprendre, Adapter et Réutiliser -, les partenaires de transfert du projet généreront une compréhension plus approfondie de toutes les dimensions de la pratique originale de l'UIA. À terme, les villes qui participent à chacun de ces réseaux amélioreront leur capacité à concevoir des solutions innovantes de manière intégrée et participative, en étant capables d'identifier les fonds nécessaires à leur mise en œuvre.

      Pour en savoir un peu plus, vous pouvez écouter les experts Eddy Adams et Matthew Baqueria-Jackson parler de la méthode Comprendre, Adapter, Réutiliser dans la vidéo suivante :

       

      Sur une période de deux ans et grâce à un processus organisé d'échange et d'apprentissage entre pairs, les partenaires du projet travailleront ensemble pour élaborer un plan d'investissement sur mesure pour la mise en œuvre du projet d'innovation. Cela se fera avec le soutien d'experts URBACT et sera lié dans chaque ville à un groupe local URBACT composé d'agents clés locaux qui rassemblent différents profils internes et externes à l'administration locale.

      Le graphique suivant résume les actions que les villes participantes peuvent attendre de ces réseaux :

       

      A quoi s'attendre

      Tester le transfert d’innovation

      Répliquer l’innovation n’est jamais simple, mais entre 2021 et 2022, cinq réseaux pilotes ont été mis en service pour tester la méthode de transfert d’innovation conçue par URBACT. Vingt villes au total ont participé à ces cinq réseaux, chacune dirigée par une ville ayant lancé un projet UIA.

      L'évaluation finale du projet pilote a démontré le succès de cette méthode de transfert et a mis en lumière certains points importants à considérer :

       

      • Décomposer le projet UIA original

      Un projet transférable est un projet qui peut être facilement modularisé. Les projets UIA sont des interventions stratégiques vastes et complexes conçues pour un territoire spécifique. Il est rare que toutes les composantes du projet puissent être transférées, il est donc généralement nécessaire de le décomposer en ses parties fondamentales. Dans la plupart des réseaux pilotes, les partenaires disposaient d'une liste prédéfinie de composants, leur permettant de sélectionner ceux qui fonctionneraient le mieux dans différents contextes locaux. Une analyse des avantages et des inconvénients, préparée par l'expert du réseau, a permis d'orienter ces choix.

      Exemple pratique : Rotterdam (Pays-Bas) a pu adapter un plan d'investissement développé par Birmingham (Royaume-Uni) via le réseau USE-IT . À cette fin, Rotterdam a adapté les outils et méthodes du plan d'investissement de Birmingham à sa réalité locale pour soutenir le développement d'un centre de recrutement pour les coopératives de travail de quartier. La participation à ce réseau a eu un impact profond sur le travail associatif à Rotterdam, avec une amélioration des relations entre le conseil municipal, l'agence Voor Goed qui promeut l'entrepreneuriat social et le Fonds d'impact social de Rotterdam.

      Cependant, la modulation comporte certains risques. Il peut être difficile pour les partenaires de comprendre pleinement chaque composante et de rejeter un ou plusieurs modules potentiellement impactants. Pour atténuer ce problème, la plupart des réseaux offraient l'option de modules, mais en incluaient un que tous les partenaires accepteraient de transférer.

      • Reconstruire le projet

      L’importance de fragmenter les grands projets d’innovation stratégique a déjà été soulignée. Nous devons le considérer comme un processus d’ingénierie dans lequel une machine est démontée pour mieux comprendre le fonctionnement de tous ses composants, à condition de se rappeler où tout va lorsqu’il est remonté.

      Cette approche est également utile lorsque les partenaires de transfert ne disposent pas d’un financement à grande échelle. Dans ce cas, ils peuvent choisir les articles qu’ils sont sûrs de pouvoir financer. Cependant, le risque potentiel que les partenaires choisissent les éléments les plus simples ou les moins chers mais potentiellement les moins innovants doit être pris en compte.

       Étapes sur la route du transfert

      La méthode de transfert URBACT est composée de différentes étapes qui préparent le chemin vers le transfert.

      La première étape importante est l’étude de transférabilité. Il est composé d'informations, de données et de chiffres sur le sujet abordé par le projet UIA à transférer et qui sont compilés après les visites du réseau dans chaque ville et les conversations avec l'administration municipale, les responsables politiques et d'autres agents concernés extérieurs à l'administration municipale. Toutes les données collectées et analysées constituent une base de référence pour chaque ville, mais indiquent également le potentiel de transfert de chacune d'elles, avec des forces et des faiblesses sur lesquelles un travail plus approfondi doit être mené. Cette étude de transférabilité devient la référence pour la marche à suivre en termes d'activités de mise en réseau et de points d'apprentissage avant le transfert effectif.

      D'autres étapes marquantes sont les activités de formation organisées par le Secrétariat URBACT, la formation à l'utilisation d'outils ou encore les sessions et événements thématiques, comme le URBACT City Festival, qui est une source d'inspiration pour les villes. 

      Enfin, le principal résultat tangible de chaque partenaire du projet est un plan d'investissement qui comprend toutes les étapes nécessaires à suivre pour la mise en œuvre de la pratique UIA (partiellement ou totalement).

      Et en terme de budget ?

      Le transfert de solutions urbaines innovantes est rarement un processus de copier-coller. Pour que la transformation se concrétise, un certain degré d’adaptation et de réutilisation est nécessaire. Une telle réutilisation nécessite des ressources : des personnes, des plans et surtout des ressources financières. En ce sens et comme nouveauté dans les prochains appels, les villes disposeront d'un petit budget pour tester les actions avant de les inclure dans leur plan d'investissement.

      À la fin des cinq réseaux pilotes réalisés, les partenaires participants ont été interrogés et plus des trois quarts ont déclaré qu'ils transféreraient au moins 50 % du concept d'innovation original de l'UIA. L'enquête a également montré que 15 % des partenaires avaient déjà obtenu un financement pour ce projet, tandis que près de la moitié étaient convaincus que leurs projets de transfert seraient financés une fois leurs projets pilotes terminés.

       Où faut-il s'inscrire ?

      Si cet article vous a ouvert l’appétit, vous pourriez être intéressé de savoir comment votre ville peut s’impliquer.

      Si vous faites partie d'une ville intéressée à devenir partenaire de transfert, vous pouvez vous connecter ici à partir du 10 janvier et trouver les ressources nécessaires pour postuler avant le 20 mars 2024. 

      Et n'oubliez pas de vous inscrire à la newsletter URBACT et de nous suivre sur @URBACT pour recevoir des mises à jour sur cet appel.

      Nous espérons vous accueillir bientôt dans la communauté URBACT,