Following the success of the 2015 Applicant Workshop last year, the Secretariat hosted an Applicant Workshop for potential applicant cities on the 30th of August 2013 at the DG Environment offices in Brussels. The workshop provided advice on how to successfully complete the 2016 Application Form and discussed the benefits of being a winning city and being an applicant city, the use of social media and also launched the Urban Good Practice & Benchmarking Report. The workshop also included an overview of the new EGCA Community, an initiative of Copenhagen (European Green Capital 2015).
Outlined below are some of the main advantages for cities applying for the European Green Capital Award. Taking part is just as important as winning ‐ city examples are also included.
1. Preparing and submitting an EGC application is a useful tool for cities to measure their progress and as a benchmarking tool against peers across Europe
Brussels Representative – Award Ceremony 2013, Nantes. “ We are all competitors here, but first we are partners”
2. The European Green Capital Award allows for an exchange of “Best Practices” across European cities.
Stockholm Representative – Award Ceremony 2013, Nantes. “Not just a competition, but a community of technical experts and officials who meet to discuss environmentally sustainable cities in Europe.”
3. Preparing an application is a great opportunity for inter‐departmental communications & relations within the Local Authority. Enhances local authority cross department communication which can lead to a clearer overall picture of the city.
Stockholm Representative – Award Ceremony 2013, Nantes. “ The Application process itself was very useful to us. We had to scrutinise the city and get all of the city administration on the band wagon”.
4. It is useful to have one document to show the status of all the green initiatives in the city. Expert feedback on a cities application can be used to identify strong and weak areas of the city.
Ljubljana City Planner – Useful to have all information collated in the one document for a holistic approach to planning.
5. Data collected for the application form may have many uses. It is an ideal opportunity to create a Sustainability Report for the city.
Dublin City Council – Has prepared a sustainability report in conjunction with submitting an application. The set of sustainability indicators as published in the report includes factors similar to the 12 environmental indicators as ssessed by the Expert Panel as part of the European Green Capital Award. More info is available here.
6. Enhances citizen participation via bid campaign e.g. Backing Bristol Campaign
Copenhagen Representative – Award Ceremony 2013, Nantes. “Copenhageners are the most important stakeholders, without them we would not have even won the award”
There were a number of invited speakers at the workshop; this was supplemented by application advice from the Secretariat. All information from the workshop is available below:
1. Introduction to the Secretariat – We’re here to help
To view this presentation please click here.
2. The Benefits of being a Green Capital
Overview of previous winning cities experiences, video from Vitoria-Gasteiz and details on the new EGCA Community initiative from Copenhagen. Presentation available here.
3. Overview of the 2016 Application form & Guidance Note
To view this presentation please click here.
4. How to complete a successful application
Including case studies from the 2015 finalist city applications. To view this presentation please click here.
5. The Benefits of Applying and Reapplying
Mr. Nicolas Hemeleers on behalf of Brussels gave an overview of technical, social and economic benefits of applying from non winning city who has submitted multiple applications. To view this presentation please click here.
6. Key elements for winning bid
Mr Alex Minshull on bahalf of Bristol the 2015 winning city presented to the workshop on key elements of their bid they believe were critical to winning e.g. gathering and presentation of information, local authority initiatives etc. To view this presentation please click here.
7. Social Media
Bristol & Brussels presented on their respective social media strategies employed as a finalist city and give overview of the benefits of this forum with particular reference to citizen participation. To view these presentation please click here & here.
8. Sharing Good Practices across Europe
Launch of the Good Practice and Benchmarking report from the 2015 cycle. This session is to highlight the good practice examples from the 2015 applicant cities. To view this presentation please click here.
An overview of the content, presentations and speakers of the 2015 Applicant Workshop is available here.