If the most pressing challenges of our cities are to be tackled successfully, it will be done not by a few experts, but rather by communities and citizens who, together, are capable of thinking creatively and coming up with new solutions. Imaginative and innovative projects are already under way — citizen-owned renewable energy systems; bike- and car-sharing schemes; urban farming; citizen-run social services. People are taking charge of their communities in cities around the world, including here in Europe. But so far, these initiatives lack the strategic coherence, economic incentives and public confidence to grow and mature into a real transition. Public pressure on decision makers, voluntary efforts and bottom-up initiatives are of key importance, and this is where education plays an important role. In order to shift to more sustainable and inclusive urban development, young people need to understand the urgency of today’s challenges, and what can be done to address them.
JPI Urban Europe is a joint programming initiative in which 13 countries pool research efforts to create vital urban areas. Seismic supports JPI Urban Europe by adding a social dimension and encouraging wider societal participation.
This project has received funding from the European Union's Seventh Framework Programme for research, technological development and demonstration under grant agreement no. 612493