2016 EUROCITIES awards have been delivered to three cities, one per category. Find more about this year’s best initiatives.
How city authorities facilitate for example the cooperative use of public space, collaborative consumption models, collaborative mobility schemes, and explaining how to work with partners to achieve solutions.
WINNER: ZARAGOZA – LA COLABORADORA
La Colaboradora is a co-working space with a difference: this community of some 200 entrepreneurs, freelancers and creative professionals each dedicate four hours of their time every month in return for support with launching their projects. The principle is an exchange of services, ideas and knowledge through a ‘bank time’ approach. For example, a member may design a logo for another member’s project, and then claim back the time spent on IT training from yet another member. Since its launch in 2013, the community has shared over 8,000 of time, and has had a significant social and economic impact: around 75% of projects have launched or consolidated, creating new local jobs.
Innovative ways city authorities manage the new business models of the sharing economy and necessary changes to the legislative framework, and how to ensure the quality of jobs created.
WINNER: ATHENS – SYNATHINA
How does a city in crisis regain the trust of its citizens? How can they be part of the solution? SynAthina, a digital platform in Athens, aims to collect ideas from citizens of how to improve their city. Launched as a pilot project in 2013 in response to the economic crisis in Greece, the platform enables direct dialogue between the city administration and its citizens. Citizens and community groups can submit their ideas and be put directly in touch with the relevant people in the administration. Where necessary, the SynAthina team will look at updating regulations and procedures to facilitate innovative projects, and the input can be used by the municipality to shape its priorities. The platform has already facilitated nearly 2,000 activities from 222 community groups.
Activities or practices of a local authority which are successful in actively promoting citizen participation for example in co-creation of service provision, and that show a clear practical benefit for citizen.
WINNER: LEEDS – MIGRANT ACCESS PROJECT
Helping the local community to help others is the principle behind the Migrant Access Project in Leeds. Local citizens from diverse backgrounds are given the skills and knowledge to be able to help newcomers settle in the city. These Migrant Community Networkers (MCNs) offer support to new arrivals in a variety of languages. The project trains volunteers on issues from healthcare and employment services to housing and budgeting. Members of the community are best-placed to identify potential problems, and the council helps to resolve these. For example, the council helped a volunteer overwhelmed with requests to set up a drop-in hub in the neighbourhood to support newcomers. Another volunteer set up Syrian Kitchen, where new arrivals can volunteer and learn more about the local area.