ICC Strategy City Lab Drives Twin Transition Collaboration

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Two intense days were dedicated to defining and learning about Local Green Deals and their implementation in cities
28 November 2023 - DEUICC  project
ICC Strategy Lab event
The European Commission's Intelligent Cities Challenge (ICC) Strategy City Lab, held in Brussels on November 23 and 24, 2023, brought together over 200 participants, including ICC core and mentor cities, political leaders, and European institution representatives. This unique in-person event focused on the Twin Transition, featuring 20 sessions covering collaboration methods, Local Green Deals (LGD), climate ambitions, and digital transitions. 

Key Highlights of the ICC Strategy Lab:

  • City Empowerment: Acknowledging cities as powerful agents for the Twin Transition, the event emphasized their crucial role in addressing social and economic challenges. 
  • EU Commitment: Hubert Gambs, Deputy Director General for Internal Market, Industry, Entrepreneurship and SMEs highlighted the influence of EU policies and initiatives, including the EU Green Deal and ICC, in driving transformative progress. 
  • Cities Mission: Patrick Child of DG Environment emphasized the operational phase of the Cities Mission initiative, underlining the potential of 100 cities representing 12% of the European population. According to Patrick, ICC is “a catalyst for change where seeds of innovation take root”. 
  • Cities Mayors gave advice and inspiration with Riccardo Ria, Mayor of Braga (Portugal), noting the importance of political leadership in a city to ensure all citizens can participate for an equitable transition. Mayor of Cork (Ireland), Kieran McCarthy, was of the same view noting the importance of effective citizen consultation for successful initiatives. Laura Inna, Mayor of Pori (Finland), highlighted the importance of a raw material strategy in Europe and Pori’s efforts for a circular green steel industry. The Mayor of Mannheim (Germany), Professor Diana Pretzell, highlighted the need to bring in liveability, attractiveness and biodiversity into a City’s green transition initiatives. 
  • Common Language: Stressing the need for alignment between cities and investors, the event emphasized the importance of a shared language to accelerate the Twin Transition. 
  • ICC's Impact: Patrizia Toia, member of European Parliament, described ICC as a catalyst for change, offering a platform for interconnectedness, learning, and driving innovative changes within Europe. 
  • Practical Implementation: The second day focused on Local Green Deals, providing cities with a hands-on framework and tailored guidance for implementation, fostering collaborative learning. 

ERNACT's Involvement
The North West City Region stands among 64 cities and city regions across Europe participating in the European Commission's Intelligent Cities Challenge 2.0 initiative. Dr. Margaret Quinn of ERNACT, the project leader for ICC 2.0 attended the ICC Strategy City Lab held in Brussels, where she interacted with other cities and learnt about their dynamic initiatives shaping the future of sustainable urban development. 

As part of the Intelligent Cities Challenge 2.0, the North West City Region is committed to playing a pivotal role in achieving the goals of the European Commission's initiative. The focus of the new initiative is on green and digital transition and building Local Green Deals to create concrete actions for change in public-private partnerships between businesses, the local authorities and communities. 

Saverio Romeo and Margaret Quinn at the ICC Strategy Lab

Click here to email  Maixa Zabaleta at ERNACT for further information

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