Green Cities Fit for Life

Image by Jean-Dominique Billaud

Smart Cities and Sustainability

21 May 2012, Brussels, Belgium

By 2050 more than 70% of the global population will live in cities. They are more economically productive and have a lower environmental footprint per capita than the average for their country. But cities are also struggling with climate change, changes in population and demographics, congestion, healthcare and pressure on key resources. To succeed in the future, cities have to deliver economic activity, quality of life and a lower environmental footprint. This cannot be delivered by optimising the separate components of the city infrastructure. New integrated and city-wide solutions are required.

Cities are engines for innovation and growth. People in cities tend to be more productive, wealthier, better educated, and more likely to start a new business. Cities also make better use of resources.  But with populations rising, how do we plan, design and manage cities that can cope with things like pressures on resources and increased waste, while meeting carbon and climate challenges?

The market is large and growing. Over £6.5tn (please indicate equivalent in euro) will be invested globally in city infrastructure over the next 10-15 years, and the accessible market for integrated city systems is estimated to be £200bn (please indicate equivalent in euro) a year by 2030.   We understand that it is no longer sufficient to address the different city systems in silos: instead it is vital to create integrated solutions, and to put the citizen at the heart of the city.

This event is being hosted by Coventry University in partnership with The European Business Network (EBN) and the European Network of Living Labs (ENoLL).  Its aim is to provide insight to a number of these global societal challenges; gain input from the community and act as a springboard to encourage partnership development for the future and discuss how to better address these future challenges.

The importance of sharing information and supporting best practice between cities is paramount to a sustainable future, and is something that the European Green capital looks at, as part of the awarding a city the title.

For more information on the environmental indicators for the European Green Capital Award click here

Vitoria-Gasteiz, the 2012 European Green Capital, has focused on sustainability as one of the foundations of its future, and believes that “Green is Capital”, highlighting that in this time of economic crisis, it presents us a great opportunity to generate jobs.

For more information on Vitoria-Gasteiz click here

For more information on the European Green Capital Award click here


For more information on the short listed cities for the 2014 European Green Capital Title click here

For more information on the event click here