CrAFt Cities Session 2: “Decide and commit to your long-term objectives” —9 February 2023— focused on translating a city vision or strategy into project plans and programmes.
Four CrAFt Cities shared their experiences in this particular topic with us:
- Anna Melchor (Las Naves, City of Valencia) highlighted the use of the Quintuple Helix innovation framework —academia, industry, public administration, civil society and the environment— and the role of public-private partnerships in the implementation of their strategies.
- Jiri Tencar (City of Pisek) shared not only the achievements of his city but also those areas that needed improvement. In Pisek’s strategy, open data is crucial. To reach greater social penetration in their public campaigns, they decided to work with kids and schools, which required them to adapt the language they usually used to communicate about the topic.
- Suzanne Thuren (City of Umeå) presented how her city works on becoming climate neutral by directly getting feedback from citizens through in-person conversations and cooperating with civil society to work in segregated neighbourhoods.
- Filipa Corais (City of Braga) introduced her city’s experiments to create more livable streets by directly engaging citizens and testing solutions temporarily.
The breakout sessions delved into how CrAFt Cities might agree with their stakeholders on how to achieve the city objectives best, how to secure resources for the implementation of the action plan and, finally, how to align all this with the New European Bauhaus principles. The participants agreed that:
- Defining the problem correctly by engaging city stakeholders —experts and non-experts— in real participatory and co-creative processes is essential.
- It’s necessary to set up transparent processes, communicate the city’s objectives clearly, and adopt a simple language understandable to everyone.
- EU funds have been instrumental in turning the city vision into tangible actions and results. Additionally, cities have used state and local funds and private investments to achieve their objectives.
In terms of specific tools that cities can employ, many good initiatives and tools were discussed, such as:
- Creating working teams to collect information from the neighbourhoods in your city
- Signing collaboration agreements towards climate neutrality with local stakeholders
- Joining EU-funded New European Bauhaus projects to gain knowledge and experience in areas of interest for your city
- Creating local collaborative platforms around crucial topics such as the circular economy