The GUST project from JPI Urban Europe’s Second Pilot Call does not only provide valuable knowledge on Urban Living Labs, but also exemplifies dissemination and implementation of the project results.
GUST stands for ‘Governance of urban sustainability transitions: advancing the role of urban living labs’. The project team achieved this mission in the course of three years.
Sharing knowledge and expertise
Talking with the project coordinator Kes McCormick, Associate Professor at Lund University, is enthusing and inspiring. In 2014, at the beginning of the project the team launched a two minutes film where Kes introduces the GUST project and explains its goals in a no nonsense way. Since the project started he and his team have put a lot of effort in dissemination and communication activities for the project: “On our website we illustrate the process, progress and achievements with films, publications, snapshots and case studies. The snapshots showcase a clear overview of Urban Living Labs (ULLs) in Europe, focusing on the GUST partner countries of Sweden, the Netherlands, Austria and the UK (40 projects), supplemented with 10 projects from outside the consortium. During the course of the project we have gained a lot of valuable and practical knowledge and expertise for all parties that can be involved in ULLs. Producing a handbook was a logical step in our dissemination process.”
Not just another handbook
The handbook ‘The Emerging Landscape of Urban Living Labs – Characteristics, Practices and Examples’ is targeted at actors planning or launching participatory activities related to urban planning or other development projects in urban contexts, focusing on municipalities, housing companies and universities. It can be equally relevant for private companies, and civil society organisations active in cities. The book contains all the relevant information on the subject, such as: what are ULLs, when and why develop one, characteristics of ULLs, how do they work, types of ULLs with examples, domains of ULLs, the role of municipalities and the various stages of ULLs.”The handbook brings together the key findings and lessons from the GUST project in an easy to read style.” says Kes.
Massive Open Online Course (MOOC)
Lund University took a step further to disseminate the knowledge about Urban Living Labs by taking it up in a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) ‘Greening the Economy: Sustainable Cities’.
The central topic in the course is ‘How can we shape urban development towards sustainable and prosperous futures?’.
Kes: ”The MOOC on sustainable cities bring together a diverse collection of films from around Europe and the world. We are astounded by the success of the MOOC. Since 2016, we have had over 60,000 visitors and 26,500 enrolled learners”.
The initiative is supported by IIIEE (the internationals Institute for Industrial Environmental Economics), WWF (World Wildlife Fund) and ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability.
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