Urban ReLeaf Citizen-powered data ecosystems for inclusive and green urban transitions
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Urban ReLeaf Citizen-powered data ecosystems for inclusive and green urban transitions

Urban ReLeaf, a new Horizon Europe project led by the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis (IIASA) and with ICLEI Europe as a partner, utilises citizen science to drive innovation in the public sector. The project aims to co-create citizen-powered data ecosystems to support climate change adaptation, green infrastructure, and urban design planning.

At the heart of Urban ReLeaf’s action- and mission-oriented approach are public authorities, established communities, and citizen groups in six pioneering cities, including ICLEI Members Cascais(Portugal), Mannheim (Germany), and Utrecht (The Netherlands) as well as Athens (Greece), Riga (Latvia) and Dundee (UK). These cities have identified possibilities for citizen-led innovation, leading to enhanced, participatory and data-driven decision-making processes.

"The Urban ReLeaf project and its city pilots will provide exciting and hands-on opportunities for local authorities across Europe to learn from. The local authorities involved in the pilots are already doing innovative work in terms of citizen science and engaging their local communities in the green transition. The project will draw attention to the governance structures that can enable the better integration of citizen science in decision-making – a much-needed opening to ensure the impact and accountability of citizen science," says Yu-Yi Huynh, Officer for Just Transition at ICLEI Europe.

ICLEI Europe’s work within the project focuses on launching and coordinating Urban ReLeaf’s Community of Practice centred around citizen contributions to innovation in public authorities. According to Karen Naciph Mora, Officer for Sustainable Resources, Climate and Resilience at ICLEI Europe, “The Communities of Practice will enable peer learning through the engaged cities, enhance the visibility of results, and promote an inclusive green transition among other cities, further broadening the impact of the project beyond the city pilots."

Urban ReLeaf aims to demonstrate the democratisation of monitoring urban greenspaces and the broader policy-making process for cities seeking to be more resilient to climate change. Such a model will provide new, inclusive approaches in line with the European Green Deal and Sustainable Development Goals, helping to make cities more resilient, livable, and accessible for everyone.

Learn more about the project here.

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