Transforming Cities, Enhancing Well-being: innovating with nature-based solutions.

16 mei, 2018

Connecting Nature and the coordination Platform Think Nature are pleased to jointly host the H2020 Clustering Action“Transforming Cities, Enhancing Well-being: innovating with nature-based solutions” which takes place from 16th -18th May 2018, in the University of A Coruna (Spain).

Cities have become a point of intersection of problems characterized by complexity and uncertainty, among which are the negative effects of climate change, increasing physical and psychological health problems, inequality, alienation, dwindling economic opportunities for many, social fragmentation and conflict. At the same time, they have been hailed as sites of experimentation and direct democracy, and as constituting the most appropriate scale for coproduction of solutions (Garcia-Mira & Dumitru, 2014). Transforming cities into vibrant, sustainable and resilient living places has become a key global priority, reflected in numerous policy documents, city-to-city agreements, and calls for design and implementation of innovative solutions to tackle multiple problems.

Against this background, nature-based solutions have been proposed as a unifying concept that could capture both the end goals and the pathways or methods through which to support transitions to vibrant, healthy, resilient and sustainable communities in urban environments. Nature-based solutions have been defined as “actions which are inspired by, supported by or copied from nature” (EC, 2015) and have recently emerged as one of the main policy drivers for transitioning cities since these fulfill multiple, simultaneous objectives.

Many cities in Europe are living labs of experimentation with nature-based solutions to multiple societal problems. Several H2020 European projects have undertaken the complex task of implementing and assessing the effects of these types of solutions on societal wellbeing and risk resilience.

The Clustering Action will bring together representatives from the European Commission and other international institutions dealing with the funding, monitoring and evaluation of nature-based solutions, such as the United Nations Environment Programme, the European Investment Bank or the European Environmental Agency. In addition to the H2020 funded projects Urban GreenUPGROW GREEN, and UNALAB,  pioneer cities, public institutions, green businesses, financial institutions, civil society, media and culture organisations and researchers are coming together for a lively debate on a diversity of urban experiments and to share the lessons learnt.

The Clustering Action will focus on 3 main themes:

  • Sustainable Urbanization in Cities and Restoration of Degraded Ecosystems. Critically reviewing the lessons learnt from the practical implementation of nature-based solutions in cities and distilling what is best practice in achieving more liveable and resilient cities through nature-based solutions.
  • Towards a reference framework for thriving cities with nature-based solutions. How the latest developments on monitoring, evaluating and data gathering can contribute to make the evidence on the comparative advantage of these interventions stronger.
  • Enhancing innovation potential through new governance and business models for nature-based solutions. Focusing more on the management side of nature-based solutions, and the role these new approaches may play in upscaling the multiple benefits of this type of interventions.

The event will be dynamic and interactive using the “pressure cooker” format, with guiding questions and specific outcomes prepared for each day aimed at maximising learning and exchange among participants.

Discussions, sharing of experiences and showcasing activities will have an equal share in this event, which will gather together leading experts and practitioners with a view to systematise evidence on how the multifunctionality of nature-based solutions can be used to improve our cities’ liveability in face of climate change. In parallel a fair will be organised where cities and other green businesses and initiatives will be invited to present their nature-based solution experiences publicly.

Download the agenda.

Please register your attendance using this link 

16th – 18th May 2018

University of A Coruna – Spain

Travel and Accomodation
Information on travel to and accommodation in A Coruna can be accessed here