Renewing Old Markets, A Tool for Cities

Markets are as old as cities. In each city, markets are organised according to each country’s culture. In all cases, though, they create meeting spaces, business and jobs and they have wide-ranging potential when it comes to implementing sustainability policies and new trends. So, what came first, markets or cities? This question is similar to [...]

By URBACT, on October 21st, 2014

Creating Partnerships on Teleki Square

With approaching municipal elections in October 2014, inaugurating celebrations of different public spaces are a daily occurrence. However, one deserves special attention. In Budapest’s 8th district, within the framework of a social rehabilitation programme going on for nearly 10 years, the city’s best practice of community planning took place, for the renewal of the disreputable [...]

By Mariann Majorné Venn, on October 16th, 2014

Getting Residents Involved in Improving Public Spaces: Lessons Learned

Residents’ involvement is vital in developing public spaces. Who better than the residents can talk about what they need, say what is not working, and suggest improvements? It is the residents who actually use the public spaces and their expert practical knowledge is invaluable. The majority of the URBACT USER network partner cities report that [...]

By URBACT, on October 10th, 2014

Letter From America 2014: the #Ferguson Problem Tree

The riots in Ferguson Missouri over the past months following the killing of Michael Brown by a police officer Darren Carter illustrate the extent to which cities are a powderkeg.  It is easy to look across the pond to America and judge them to be lacking, but in Europe we have had riots in places [...]

By Peter Ramsden, on October 7th, 2014

Sustainable Food Against Climate Change

How can sustainable food contribute to fighting climate change? The experience of cities involved in the URBACT network Sustainable Food in Urban Communities gives insights into how cities can play a decisive role in fostering a change in the daily behaviors of citizens, with positive effects on CO2 emissions at global, national and local level. Ten [...]

By Simone D'Antonio, on September 30th, 2014

How do Revolving Funds change the Investement and Decision-Making Game?

The aim of the JESSICA (Joint European Support for Sustainable Investment in City Areas)  initiative by the European Commission and the European Investment Bank is to support “sustainable investment in cities” via financial engineering mechanism. Through the implementation of the initiative, Urban Development Funds are emerging as potentially powerful tools to pursue sustainable urban transformation.  [...]

By URBACT, on September 23rd, 2014

Sharing Food to Save the Planet: The Unusual Suspects Festival

Apart from Jordan and Even, I don’t think anyone else noticed that the carrots were missing. The two signature dishes created by chef Even Bakke during our workshop went down a treat. Both vegetarian, and one inspired by Iranian cuisine, they typified the exciting things happening in Sweden’s public kitchens. They also provided the perfect [...]

By Eddy Adams, on September 17th, 2014

Urban News from Hungary: Okotarsulas, a Community Supported Agriculture Experience

A number of models for community supported agriculture are known in the world. In the most cases they represent a kind of contractual relationship between one or more producers and a group of consumers. In order to obtain food from reliable sources typically more buyers jointly find producers they trust and who undertake to provide [...]

By Mariann Majorné Venn, on September 12th, 2014

The Trouble with Procurement

Hey, lets talk about procurement. …… You still there? Yes, procurement has a bit of a problem doesn’t it. But if I kick off with – “Hey, lets talk about how cities use their resources to get better results”, then it’s probably a different matter. So what is it about the P word? Surely, we’re [...]

By Eddy Adams, on September 8th, 2014

16 Ways You Can Take Advantage of URBACT Even if You are Not Part of It – Active Citizens

When you hear about the URBACT programme, does it sound like an abstract thing that wouldn’t be of any use to you? Check out these suggestions. You may be surprised to find out what this program can do for you! 4. Are you an activist, a user, a citizen? Be aware of the priority issues [...]

By Jorge Toledo, on September 2nd, 2014