Rapidly growing urban populations and the consequences of climate change place added pressure on the economic, environmental, and social health of cities. Local stakeholders are faced with significant challenges and tradeoffs when trying to address these concerns. City networks and collaborative research projects can provide insight into proven solutions and implementation strategies, thereby supporting the overall resilience of a city.
The project Post‐Carbon Cities of Tomorrow – foresight for sustainable pathways towards liveable, affordable and prospering cities in a world context (POCACITO) is a research project funded by the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for Research, Technological Development. The objective of the project is to facilitate the transition of EU cities to a forecasted sustainable or “post‐carbon” economic model, eventually leading to an evidence‐based EU 2050 post-carbon city roadmap.
At the core of the project is a series of participatory stakeholder workshops in the case study cities of Barcelona, Copenhagen/Malmö, Istanbul, Lisbon, Litoměřice, Milan/Turin, Rostock and Zagreb. The purpose of these workshops is to bring together local stakeholders to construct a common post-carbon vision for 2050 and roadmap, or action plan, to reach the vision. The workshops will highlight the current successes and challenges facing the city and support a discussion of city-specific innovative measures based on lessons learned from local experience and best practices.
Other initiatives of the project include the development of a typology of post-carbon cities, which will be the basis of the EU 2050 post-carbon city roadmap. Additionally, the project will establish an online “market place of ideas” that supports an international knowledge exchange of urban best practices between cities in the EU and worldwide. The project also organises two study tours that enable city representatives to visit EU best practices in person as well as to connect and exchange experiences with representatives from other cities.
The project’s research supports the sustainable development objective of the Europe 2020 strategy and the Innovation Union flagship initiative. POCACITO began in January 2014 and will end with a final conference in December 2016.